Craig Lee Recruit Scouting Report: Explosive California Running Back

Film evaluation of talented Redlands (Calif.) High School running back Craig Lee.

Redlands (Calif.) High School running back Craig Lee is a recruit that has mostly flown under the radar during the 2013 recruiting cycle. The 6'0, 195 pounder has still managed to garner close to 15 offers despite not receiving the notoriety that his talents warrant. Lee is rated as a high-three-star to low-four-star recruit according to most services. The California back is primarily considering offers from UCLA, Notre Dame, Arizona and Washington; from a list of offers that include Nebraska, California, Colorado and Oregon State.

Lee is a taller runner with a linear build. He possesses good muscle tone through his upper body, but needs to add mass to his lower half. He projects to max out in the 210-215-pound range primarily due to his height. Overall though, Lee's frame appears to be a bit limited.

Considered more of a speed back, Lee should fit in as a change of pace option early on in his career. The best fit would likely be in a rotation where he can be worked into the game in spurts, playing behind a bigger, more durable starter, who would handle the lion's share of the carries. A true two-stepper, Lee is a big-play threat that gets up to top speed quickly and can win footraces in the open field once he's reached the second level of a defense.

At this stage, Lee is primarily a perimeter runner. As he progresses to the next level; however, he will need to do a better job of staying patient inside and pressing the hole. Too often (even on plays designed to go in between the tackles), he looks to burst outside. This is an adjustment he will need to make in order develop into a more consistent back -- one who can help an offense stay on schedule down and distance wise, in addition to hitting the home run. Lee shows the vision to identify interior creases as he does an excellent job cutting back inside and accelerating through running lanes in instances where the defense has sealed off the edge.

Lee is an elusive runner. Instead of dancing, he relies on lateral explosiveness and sudden changes of direction to evade pursuers. Upon reaching the second level, he is very good at inducing a defender to commit to a pursuit angle, then sticking his foot into the ground and bursting in the opposite direction.

Whatever program picks up Lee will gain a talented recruit who possesses upside as an interior runner. This is primarily due to him possessing the vision to locate holes in the interior and the ability take advantage of them with sharp, precise cuts. He will also need to do a better job of coiling up his frame at the line of scrimmage and commit to grinding out the tough yards.

Craig Lee : Redlands High (CA) Class of 2013 : Junior Year Highlights (via utrhighlightvideos)

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