FULLERTON, Calif. - The Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl practices continued on Thursday morning in Southern California.
The second day saw the offense improve, but they were still trying to find an answer for the defensive line when it came to the team portion of the practice.
247Sports breaks down the top performers from Thursday’s practice.
1. DE Keyon Brown - Wauchula (Fla.) Hardee - The Georgia commitment had his second consecutive day of dominance in practice. He won every single rep on the day. He displayed his speed once again and an array of moves. He can work around the edge or beat his blocker to the inside. He has a great series of traits when it comes to speed, strength, quickness, and the ability to think on his feet. While Georgia likely moves him into space in their scheme, his strength is always going to be off the edge.
2. DT Ricky Walker - Hampton (Va.) Bethel - Walker was impressive on Wednesday and continued to do good things on Thursday. The Virginia Tech commitment displayed great strength regularly ripping his way through the blocking lineman. Very active hands and a powerful punch allow him to get linemen off-balance and he makes quick, decisive moves into the offensive backfield.
3. DT Poona Ford - Hilton Head (S.C.) - The best player on the first day wasn't far off from defending his crown. The Louisville commitment is extremely light on his feet despite weighing in just shy of 300 pounds. Very quick off the snap and uses his arms to create great leverage. His strength allows him to go toe-to-toe with anybody and everybody.
4. OG Montel McBride - Plant City (Fla.) - The only man to slow down Poona Ford over two days was the Alabama commitment. McBride is a massive guard who is tough to get around due to his general width. When he is able to get his large hands squarely on a defender, he is about as strong of a lineman as you are going to find. He does a good job of moving his feet and anchoring in when he wins the block.
5. RB Mikel Horton - Cincinnati (Ohio) Lakota West - The offense continues to struggle to get off the ground for the East, but Horton had a number of good flashes on Thursday. The Kentucky running back commitment is a strong runner between the tackles with his thick, solid build. Where he impresses the most on Thursday though was as a receiver making some difficult catches look routine. Soft hands on the big back.
6. LB Connor Strachan - Needham (Mass.) St. Sebastian's - The Boston College commitment will continue the line of strong linebacker play for the Eagles. A thick, solid 240-pound linebacker who is very direct when he takes gap assignments. He is very good at getting himself around the ball and shows the ability to end the play. Physical and good in tight spaces. He will thrive in the Boston College defense.
News and Notes:
- While the offense had a better day, in the 11-on-11 portion they were only able to complete a trio of passes down the field. The defensive line still consistently dominated the action on Thursday.
- Pittsburgh (Pa.) Central Catholic quarterback JJ Cosentino is nursing a high ankle sprain while participating in the event. Cosentino fully participated on Thursday, but it was clear the ankle is still tender from the injury suffered just a couple of weeks ago.
- Suwanee (Ga.) Peachtree Ridge offensive tackle Orlando Brown was regularly praised for his potential on the day. For every good rep Brown had, he had one where he struggled. With gains in strength and work on technique, he has the potential to be a special offensive tackle in the view of some of the coaches working the event.
- Carrollton (Ga.) kicker/punter Tyler Newsome impressed with his punting ability. He gets great height and length on his kicks.
- Tallahassee (Fla.) Lincoln defensive back Kendall Randolph named a top two of Kentucky and Louisville. Louisville is his current leader.
- Immokalee (Fla.) athlete Jimmy Bayes said that he expects to play safety when he arrives at USF. He said playing linebacker or even wide receiver isn't out of the question though.
- 1982 Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker was among the onlookers at Thursday's practice. Walker is Savannah (Ga.) Calvary Day School tight end Milan Richard's uncle.