Name: Roderick Bernard
School and hometown: Sharpstown High School in Houston, Texas
Position: Wide receiver
Height and weight: 5'9 and 175 pounds
Ratings: A consensus three-star prospect in the 247Sports Composite rankings, 247Sports has Bernard as a borderline four-star prospect. He's the no. 69 player player in Texas in the former rankings, as well as the no. 69 wide receiver and no. 544 prospect nationally.
Offers: The Sharpstown product committed to Texas on January 30, 2013. He also holds offers from Houston and Oklahoma.
Highlights: Available on Hudl
The biggest knock on Bernard is one that he can't control -- his size. Listed at 5'10 by his coaches, he's a little bit shorter than that and doesn't benefit from the same sturdy build as top national slot receiver Speedy Noil, the explosive Louisiana prospect. If there is one factor keeping him from a four-star rating on 247Sports, size is probably it.
In terms of speed, the film tells the tale of Bernard's quickness, but that isn't always enough for those who like to question competition level, so the track exploits of the Sharptstown star tell a more standardized tale.
Bernard runs the 100m for Sharsptown and has a personal best of 10.81 as a sophomore that he has yet to top this spring as a junior. It's a solid time, but it does suggest that he may be quicker in short areas than he is elite on the top end. In the 40, he claims that he was timed as low as the 4.2 range.
With explosive jump-cutting ability and lateral quickness, Bernard can make opponents miss in traffic and has remarkable start-stop quickness that allows him to accelerate to top speed within several steps.
There's not much evidence on film of developed route-running ability down the field, so that is an area where Bernard will have to spend time in college before he is ready to become a multi-dimensional threat instead of a player capable of executing a package of wheelhouse plays that showcase his raw talent.
A possible threat in the perimeter run game in college, his experience taking handoffs and making plays in high school not only makes it easier to project him at a similar position in college, it also means that he understands the vision necessary to find holes and maximize yardage.
The other factor likely keeping Bernard from earning that fourth star? The high bust rate on players of his size, stature, and talents, as Texas fans know from the career of a similar small, dynamic Houston-area speedster,DeSean Hales.
As high as his natural talent makes his ceiling, the need to design plays around his skillset also makes him more likely to never reach his significant potential in college.
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