Finally the MVP Camp has made it down to the youth ranks! The two top writers in the southeast, Chad Simmons of Scout and Rusty Mansell of 247 organized the first ever MVP Camp for the Middle Schoolers and rising 9th graders. The event did not disappoint as there were over 150 youth athletes in attendance ready to make their name known.
Offensive players are always going to standout because they can put points on the board. So everyone is always interested in who is the next big time QB, WR or RB thats coming up. This group didn’t disappoint as there were some big names in it as well as some players that had an opportunity to make a name for themselves.
Harrison Bailey (QB – 2020) Sometimes we take Harrison Bailey for granted because he has been so good for so long. This longevity has caused him at times to be overlooked. Today was not one of those times. Bailey came to prepared to play and showed why he is considered the B2C Top Prospect in the country for the 2020 class.
Ross Malmgren 2019) This QB was his usual self with his accurate, on time passes. Malmgren, or as we like to call him – The General, is the model of consistency ever single time he steps on the field. He also had one of the prettiest throws of the day which was a corner route that was on the money! He definitely made heads turn with this one.
Zach Calzada (QB – 2019) This athlete was one of the best players out there. Calzada was constantly hitting his wideouts on the money all day long, which we all know accuracy is the most important ability a QB needs to play this game. This QB while a bit undersized, is one growth spurt away from being considered one of the top players in the state. He will be attending Blessed Trinity for high school next year and they have a great freshman group coming in that should help prepare the way for his high school success.
Kenyon Jackson (WR – 2019) Arguably this wide receiver had the best day out of any of the wideouts. Jackson is a big body receiver that has had trouble using his size in the past, although now it seems like he finally realizes that he is 6”2, 180lbs and can go after it on the field. Jackson was using that big body to shield off corners and make plays on some of the better corners at the camp. This included a slant route where he got inside and didn’t necessarily beat the DB but his body was able to get in the way and assist him in making the catch as the DB was all over him. Sky is the limit for Jackson if he continues to play like this. Mike Robertson (2020) from Savannah who usually plays RB worked out mostly at WR. He held his own against the older players and to be honest he didn’t look to bad at the position at all as he caught the ball extremely well in individual drills. When he got into one on one you could see that he was raw as he had to deal with coverage but if this is a move that he is making for the future then it is a welcomed idea for the outstanding players from the coast.
At the Running Back position, it was pretty much the same since you do not get a chance to see what the athletes truly look like until they take a hit but B2C RB of the Year Jeremy Smith (2019) from Savannah looked great going in and out of drills. Looking at Smith, he always passes the eyeball test with his size and then when he goes through drills. This RB will blow you away with his athleticism. Paris Brown who is considered the #1 All Purpose Back in the country for 2019 caught passes better than any wideout that was attending the camp and also blew everyone away with his 4.61 forty.
Offensive Lineman were impressive. Coming in with a big name, Quentin Skinner (2019) played very well. After a few rough patches, he was able to rebound very well during the showcase period with two massive pancakes. Harry Miller (2019) continues to climb higher and higher on the charts, challenging all the top defensive lineman at the camp. This says a lot about a player when you are constantly jumping out there to compete against quality competition. He had some losses in one on ones but overall he had an outstanding day and ended up winning the top 8th Grader award in the camp. Nicholas Rowan has all the ability. Big body, his feet are developing, he shoots his hands well and the kid is super smart which is key for lineman. He is going to be the type of kid is going to develop into an outstanding pass blocker because you won’t be able to confuse him with any type of defensive blitz that is put in front of him. As long as he continues to get stronger, which he will, then the kid has the ability to be pretty special. Jackson Ramey, Class of 2020, can literally blow you away with his strength and size. You can tell that he is very raw with his footwork but in due time he will be on everyones watch list.
Defense is your cornerstone. As much as scoring points helps win games, defense wins championships. It couldn’t have been more evident than when you look at the Super Bowl this past season. Defense won the Patriots their championship. The MVP Camp had several marque players that can make an impact on somebodies team this upcoming year.
Nolan Smith looked unreal at the defensive line. He is moving from Linebacker to Defensive End as he has finally started to hit his growth spurt and he looks great! He dominated all day long and had amazing energy out there as he was full go on every play. Not only was he able to show a speed rush but he was able to add a spin move to go along with solid hand work. At this point, he projects to be one of the top players in the state as he continues to develop.
Ty Murray (2019) had some good moments at OL and DL as he worked both sides. His better performance for today was on the Dline. Big body, violent hands and a mean attitude. Whatever he chooses to stick with, he will be good at it because he has everything you want in a lineman to go along with he exceptional work ethic. Tyler Roach and DJ Cameron of the 2020 class were outstanding as well. They consistently competed against the older players and at one point were beating the better ones for three or four straight snaps. Look to see these athletes established as very good players as Tyler can stay outside and DJ has enough ability to play outside and inside on the Dline.
Defensive Backs were loaded with talent. Jaylen McCullough impressed just off size alone. McCullough has the chance to be one of the best freshman safeties in the country next year. Jalen Alexander who is considered the #1 player in the state looked great as he covered well. In press and off Alexander was everything you expected him to be. He only had two passes caught on him – one was an amazing throw on the fade and the other was a great catch by the WR on the slant. Antoine Davis had a great day as well as he was very good at pressing WR. He gave plenty of them fits all day with aggressive play. Any route that was 10 or shorter he was winning all day because of the way he pressed and because of his quickness.
Overall the camp seemed to be a great success as their were a good amount of players out there making a name for themselves. In the southeast this is the strongest class of rising freshman since ironically enough this class that is graduating this year, as far as with the amount of quality players across the board.