Wednesday, March 27, 2013

2013 NUC West Five-Star - Top Performers Defense

2013 NUC West Five-Star - Top Performers Defense
Photo by: National Underclassmen Football Combine

2013 NUC West Five-Star - Top Performers Defense

Courtesy: Barry Every / National Underclassmen Combine
          Release: March 27, 2013
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2013 West Five-Star Showcase 
Barry's Top Performers - Defense

Menifee, California- The National Underclassmen held its second annual West Five-Star Showcase this past Saturday on the campus of Paloma Valley High School. Approximately 100 athletes from the Pacific Time Zone were on hand to compete in the premier NUC event. If you were looking for true cover corners than this was the camp to attend as the defensive backs dominated the camp. Below are the defensive top performers as seen by NUC National Analyst Barry Every.

Dillon Faamatau, Norwalk, CA (2015)  
Official Size: 6-2-1/2, 270  

The first thing that stands out about this interior defensive lineman is his overall body structure. Faamatau has little to no bad body weight and a frame that can easily hold another 20 pounds. He proved to be very powerful at the point of attack while using good pad level. When Faamatau comes off the ball he understands how to shoot his hands out front looking to gain the advantage. His size potential will allow him to project as either an interior defensive lineman or offensive lineman.

Defensively he needs to work on his arsenal of pass rushing moves. Too many times he relied on the bull rush when approaching the point of attack. This move seldom works at the next level. He has two more years to develop as a player and that is why I think he will eventually become a hot commodity with college coaches.

Joseph Hurtado, Liberty, CA (2014)  
Official Size: 6-1, 224  

This weak side defensive end plays with his hair on fire. Hurtado comes off the ball hard and low while using his hands as medieval weapons. The only way to describe his get off is that each individual muscle fiber is twitching in his body just before the snap of the ball. His speed off the edge was just too much to handle for most of the offensive lineman in this camp. Several of the offensive linemen ended up punching at air as Hurtado went unabated to the quarterback. For his tremendous effort he was honored as the Defensive Line MVP.

Hurtado is what we call a tweener; not quite the ideal size of a defensive end but considered huge for a linebacker. He is very lean and could hold another 20 pounds of muscle mass. He really needs to be looked at as a pass rushing specialist. He could easily excel at the Big Sky level or perhaps Air Force, Army, or Navy.


Lonnie Sharpe, Arbor View, NV (2014)  
Official Size: 5-11, 172  

Sharpe caught my eye early on the camp as he whipped through, over, and around the bags during agilities. He demonstrated quick feet, flexible hips, and excellent change of direction. During the two-on-twos he proved to be physical at the point of attack. He has a nice backpedal and looked natural moving in space while playing off the line of scrimmage. His recovery speed proved to be superior to the other competitors. For his hard work Sharpe earned LB MVP in this camp.

Sharpe is really the size of a safety prospect. He is very lean with a frame that can hold at least another 25 pounds of muscle mass. The big question is will he be big enough to player linebacker? I think he would be a steal of a quality FCS program because his skill set really lends itself to excelling on special teams and playing against the spread offense.


Isaiah Edwards, Valhalla, CA (2014)  
Official Size: 5-11, 175  

Edwards really came on during the two-on-twos and one-on-ones. He had at least three picks on the day. He has great size for a corner and could even project as a safety at the next level. He was very physical with receivers coming off the line of scrimmage. The bottom line is the defensive back group was very talented and Edwards was clearly one of the top competitors in this camp. I have little doubt about him being a major DI prospect.

Edwards needs to get his film out there for college coaches to evaluate. Picking a series of one-day college camps will get him one step closer to gaining his first set of offers. If he does end up projecting as a safety he will need to add about 20 pounds of muscle mass.

Tyler Horton, Edison, CA (2015)  
Official Size: 5-11-1/2, 160  

Wow this kid is a good looking corner prospect! He caught all the coaches eyes early in the camp with his smooth backpedal and hips on a swivel. Horton also attacks the ball like a receiver. He does a great job of high pointing the ball while using freaky body control to adjust when necessary. His performance during the one-on-ones was also top shelf as he made several plays on the ball. This kid is a true lock down corner with ball skills a rare commodity. He is a no doubt can't miss prospect in my opinion. His herculean effort earned him DB MVP in this camp.

He is a tad thin at this time but in two years he will easily be over 180 pounds. Look for him to gain offers before his senior year ever begins. There is just something in the water up in Fresno, CA because they just seem to produce high level defensive backs.

Robert Sanders, Franklin, CA (2014)  
Official Size: 5-9, 160  

Quicker than a water bug and stings like a bee is the only way to describe this competitor. Sanders is smooth, quick, and balanced in his backpedal. This allows him to pounce out like a South American jungle cat (Ocelot) and attack the ball. I will go on record and say this guy reacts quicker than almost anyone I have ever seen at an NUC event. On top of that Sanders has excellent ball skills for a true cover corner. His performance wowed the entire NUC coaching staff so he ended up being the easy choice for Overall Camp MVP.

He may not be the biggest corner but he makes up for it with sure determination and superior athletic ability. College coaches need to figure out where Elk Grove, CA is on the map. Its 17 miles south of Sacramento just down CA-99. This defensive back is worth the trip and he has a teammate Joey Banks that is also a major DI prospect.

Other Top Performers: Juan Jimenez, DB, Dorsey, CA (2014)
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