The Nike football recruit training camp was excellent Sunday, despite some rainy and cold conditions. Eight players earned invites to The Opening, and over 150 FBS-level players were in attendance.
Chuma Edoga, of Powder Springs (Ga.) McEachern, had a fantastic day in earning an invite to The Opening. The 2015 offensive linemen is set to decide on May 25, and I have a write-up coming on his decision. Edoga came in at 6'3.5, 277 pounds, and ran an amazing 4.86 40-yard dash. It was extremely impressive, as were his other testing numbers, like a 4.46 shuttle and a 32" vertical jump.
But Edoga was not just a workout warrior. He showed good footwork in drills, and was fantastic in one-on-ones, showing quickness, aggressiveness and balance. I'll be interested to see how Edoga does as he adds the 30 or so pounds he needs for college, and am excited to see more of him at The Opening.
Dallas Warmack, the younger brother of Chance Warmack, also earned an invite to The Opening. The 6'2, 305-pounder is committed to follow in his brother's footsteps at Alabama. Warmack has excellent balance and power for an interior player, and is built much like his brother. However, he did not wear a belly shirt.
I still think Clemson commit Mitch Hyatt, of Suwanee (Ga.) North Gwinnett, is one of, if not the best offensive tackle prospect in the country, but he came in considerably lighter than expected at 6'6, 258 pounds, which is very, very light. I know Hyatt is playing basketball and that the sport contributes to weight loss, but keeping on muscle is a trait, and I want to see Hyatt maintain a higher level of muscle mass.
Hyatt was fantastic in drills, but he did not do well in one-on-ones, and did not earn an invite to The Opening.
Chris Barnes, of Leesburg (Ga.) Lee County, is a fantastic 2016 prospect, showing great balance and feet. He should have many offers within the year. And Ben Cleveland is one of the best looking underclassmen prospects you'll ever see, at 6'7, 314 pounds with a 5.11 40-yard dash. Unlike Barnes, Cleveland is a known commodity and has tons of offers.
The defensive line was just as loaded, with numerous elite prospects showing out, though none received invites to The Opening.
Austin Bryant, of Thomasville (Fla.) Thomas County Central showed his trademark burst off the ball, and bested everyone but Edoga. The 6'4, 245-pounder is one of the ten best defensive ends I've seen this year, and a natural pass rusher. He backed up his four-star rating.
UGA commitment Chauncey Rivers isn't the biggest (6'2, 245 pounds), but he also showed good quickness off the edge. D'Andre Walker, of Fairburn (Ga.) Langston Hughes, showed much of the same, though he is thinner than Rivers. Walker has Georgia and Tennessee standing out. Both are quite quick off the edge. Natriz Patrick, another four-star weak-side end from Atlanta (Ga.) Mays, also fits that mold. Atlanta was filled with good pass rushers.
Michael Barnett, of Dorchester (S.C.) Woodand, caught my eye as one of the top strong-side type ends, and has excellent length.
Two underclassmen were the best at defensive tackle: Julian Rochester, of Powder Springs (Ga.) McEachern, and Derrick Brown, of Buford (Ga.) Lanier. I think Rochester could also be an excellent offensive tackle with his length.
WR/TE/DB -- by Jason Kirk
2017 Suwanee, GA defensive back DeAngelo Gibbs made at least as much of an impact as any junior or senior. At 6'2, 200 pounds, he already has a full, powerful frame, which he knows how to use well. At one point, he jammed a receiver so hard the smaller upperclassmen left the drill and went back to stand in line -- Gibbs ended a play before it had even started. He blew an assignment while lined up at safety, but it's easy to see why he has offers from Baylor, Clemson, Georgia, Kentucky and South Carolina as a sophomore.
The most eye-catching receiver was 6'4 2015 Tennessee commit Preston Williams. Some regard Williams as the top receiver in the country. His physique made him too much for any of the corners to consistently handle, and he's a receiver to the core (for better and worse -- he dragged a little during non-catching drills and flipped a caught ball or two back in his opponents' faces). Williams received an invite to The Opening.
Georgia commit Terry Godwin was the most complete and polished receiver. The 165-pound senior from Callaway, GA runs routes well and got open without much stress during seven-on-seven drills. And while he played receiver on the day, Godwin is also a talented defensive back. Godwin also received an invite to The Opening.
Josh Imatorbhebhe, a 6'1 junior out of North Gwinnett, GA, also excelled against defensive backs. He claims a Boston College offer.
Junior Demetris Robertson, a 6'1 athlete from Savannah who claims offers from Alabama, Florida, Georgia and others, impressed in just about everything he did, from agility drills to one-on-ones.
Mechane Slade, a 5'10 running back from Roswell, GA, ran routes and caught better than most of the receivers, suggesting he'll be a capable dual threat in college.
Kevin Toliver II, considered by most to be the best cornerback in the country, also received an invite to The Opening despite sitting out for a while with an apparent leg injury.
RB/LB -- by Ingram Smith
Despite being on the shorter side, running back Taj Griffin, of Powder Springs (Ga.) McEachern, stood tall over all other backs on the day. Griffin was way too much for any running back to consistently handle. Griffin is incredibly quick, and has good top-end speed. And he changes directions quite well, adjusting to throws. Griffin has some size limitations, but he is excellent at being a multi-purpose back. For his efforts, he received an invite to The Opening.
Kyle Davis, a talented 2016 recruit out of Lawrencevile (Ga.) Archer, with offers from Miami and Mississippi State, had a very good day.
On the linebacker side, two stars earned invites to The Opening.
Quarte Sapp, of Alpharetta (Ga.) Milton, had a strong day, showing his quickness. The 6'2, 205-pounder must add good weight, but he has the athleticism to back up his major offers. The same goes for Montezuma (Ga.) Macon County's Roquan Smith, who is also 6'1, 200 pounds, with great quickness, but in need of size.