Saturday was the first of two stops in the great state of Texas for the Rivals Camp Series Presented by Under Armour, with elite talents from Texas and Louisiana showing their stuff at Westfield High School in Houston. AggieYell.com was on hand and provides a look at some of the prospects that are either committed to Texas A&M or have offers from the Aggies.
2014 La Porte LB and A&M commit Hoza Scott:
Scott arrived late, but for the most part was extremely impressive in his one-on-one matchups with running backs and tight ends -- impressive enough to win an invite to the Rivals 5-star Challenge in June. He told us he's gained about 10 pounds of muscle since the end of the 2012 football season, and he was unquestionably one of the most physically imposing players on the field.
On his first drill, Scott was matched up with a running back on a deep route and he stayed with him stride for stride, leaping up and nearly intercepting the pass. He would pick off several other passes during drills, when he would anticipate the route the receiver was running, cut under it and make the interception. His movements were all fluid, his cuts sharp and his coverage skills were better than you'd expect from a high school linebacker.
While his anticipation helped him for the most part, it got him burned a couple times as well. Scott bit on a couple out moves and lost the running back he was covering, including one time when he fell on his backside. His natural ability makes him truly special, and he's still thriving off of it -- but he needs to improve his technique and learn to read keys that indicate where the receiver's going in coverage. Once he does that, he's going to be more than truly dangerous -- he'll be one of the best handful of players in college football. He really has that much potential.
New Orleans Edna Karr WR Speedy Noil:
The nickname is accurate. Noil, the offensive skill position MVP of the camp, was the most impressive wideout on display today. He told us after the event was over that his goal today was "to make people look bad," and he did that. Solidly built at 5 feet, 10 inches tall and 180 pounds, Noil did a great job of getting separation at the line of scrimmage with lateral quickness or using his hands if he needed to. Noil caught nearly everything that was thrown his way (well, that wasn't underthrown and picked off) and won one-on-ones with some of the best corners out there, including A&M target Jermaine Roberts (more on him in a minute).
Noil said he's got A&M, LSU and USC among his leaders and he'll be visiting College Station either next month or in June with fellow Edna Karr teammate Gerald Willis III (more on him in a second). They'll be going up with another Edna Karr standout, A&M signee Noel Ellis.
Both Noil and Willis will be going to the 5-star Challenge as well.
Edna Karr DE Gerald Willis III:
Willis, like Scott, was one of the more physically imposing players on the field today. For a guy who is already pushing 270 pounds and is almost all muscle, it's really amazing that what stood out with Willis was his quickness. Very few, if any, defensive line prospects at the Houston camp came out of the stance was a more explosive first step than Willis did. In several instances during one-on-one drills, Willis was already turning the corner on the opposing tackle by the time his opponent was out of his stance. Not surprisingly, given his physique, Willis is also capable of pushing around opposing linemen with his impressive upper body strength. It's not much of a shock that LSU, A&M and Florida are hot on his trail.
Baton Rouge University Laboratory School OG Garrett Brumfield:
Brumfield was the offensive line MVP of the camp, and it wasn't much of a contest. He had it one from his first one-on-one, when he took the opposing defensive linemen and pushed him into the dirt face first -- and he took all of one step back in the process.
For a guy who is obviously powerful in the upper body, Brumfield showed good quickness as well. He moved side to side nicely and opposing linemen had trouble gaining leverage on him. He frequently kept them at a distance with his long arms, and, if they did get inside, he as able to regain momentum and move them out of the way. He told us that he is definitely interested in A&M.
New Orleans St. Augustine CB Jermaine Roberts:
Roberts is not a big guy and is perhaps generously listed at 5 feet, 10 inches tall and 175 lbs. He's also soft spoken and very polite.
And he has a look in his eyes when he lines up across from a wideout that lets the other guy know he's in for the battle of a lifetime.
The intensity Roberts brought to the table wasn't the only impressive thing about him; in fact, his whole game is impressive. His forte, without question, is press coverage -- he'll get up on a receiver, regardless of his size, and push, grab and dictate the receiver's route inside the first five yards. From there, his cover skills are outstanding as he'll stay right in the receiver's hip pocket and doesn't turn around to look for the ball until the wideout does. He got beat a couple of times, including once by Noil, but the coverage in both instances was excellent and a perfect throw beat him. There was nothing wrong with his performance in either instance.
Roberts has Alabama as his leader and A&M in second, but he said he'll be visiting College Station again this spring.
Texas City WR Armanti Foreman:
Foreman did not have the best of days today, struggling with catching the football. And he knew it, too, saying afterwards he was disappointed in his performance.
Foreman did show why Oklahoma was in pursuit of him early and why A&M and Florida have offered more recently: he's fast and breaks on the ball well. Getting open is not a problem for him; he'd blow past defending corners and get open, but was fighting the ball and at one point dropped four out of five passes.
There's no question that he's a playmaker, but he wasn't on Noil's level today.