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May 3, 2013
CLICK HERE for complete Rivals Camp coverage
What are the Rivals Camps? The first ever Rivals.com Camp Series sponsored by Under Armour will make it's second of two Illinois based stops on Saturday May 4th at Maine South High School in Park Ridge, Illinois. Maine South is located just a stone's throw from O'Hare International Airport in the near Northern suburbs.
Who is invited? The Rivals Camps are invitation only and will feature the best of the best recruits in the region as determined by the Rivals.com network of national and regional recruiting experts. The Chicagoland area Rivals Camp will bring together roughly 200 recruits from several different states this Sunday. Registration is closed for this camp and no walk-up registration is allowed.
For more details on the Chicagoland Rivals Camp CLICK HERE for starting times and directions.
Why Chicagoland area for the Rivals Camp? The Chicagoland Rivals Camps will be the 15th and final stop on this nation-wide tour and Chicagoland makes sense for these camps on many levels. Chicagoland and Illinois has been producing some solid recruiting classes in 2013 and now 2014. The area as a whole is improving on a recruiting scale both regionally and nationally. Chicago remains one of the most accessible big cities in the nation. O'Hare airport is literally 10 minutes away from Maine South and the Chicagoland area is accessible via several different transportation means. Chicago is also the third largest media market in the country and Yahoo/Rivals.com has a recent partnering agreement with NBC Sports/Comcast Sportsnet.
Important for Chicagoland? The O'Fallon Rivals Camp a few weeks ago no question made a solid impression on the uppity ups at Rivals and showed that Illinois can and will support these camps both with overall talent and numbers as well as with support from the high schools and the state association. Chicagoland will hopefully increase the impression and the reputation for the Land of Lincoln when it comes to football. Illinois has been known as a basketball state for many years and while hoops is still top dog events such as this along with the recently announced Rivals.com 5 Star Challenge (which will feature the Top 100 prospects nationally in June at Soldier Field) will just increase the presence both regionally and nationally of football in Illinois.
Why go to the Rivals Camps? The Rivals Camps are a great place to compete against some of the top recruits in the nation. These invite only events will guarantee that you'll square off against the best of the best. The amount of recruits allowed to attend the Rivals Camps have been capped unlike other similar camps so player can expect to get plenty of work all day on Saturday. The overall coverage and exposure from the Rivals.com network is second to none just CLICK HERE to see some previous camp coverage. Rivals.com is the unquestioned online leader in football recruiting coverage and the Rivals.com audience literally doubles several other networks combined. Yahoo/NBC Sports which includes Rivals.com was recently named as the #1 most viewed sports network in the nation.
Also important to note: The Rivals Camps are NOT combines and unlike others this camp does NOT perform any testing or any timing whatsoever. The Rivals Camps are all football drill work and skills. The Rivals Camps feature the best players doing what they do best which is play football. Recruits are judged and evaluated performing football only related drills and one on ones. We leave the stop watches at home.
Below are some 2014 prospect who I feel have a chance to either make a strong impression or who could boost their overall recruiting stock on Saturday.
WR Jauan Wesley (5-foot-11, 170 pounds) Thornton Township- still a bit surprised that Wesley, a speedy receiver who was a standout at the Core 6 Showcase back in January is still sitting with just a few offers including his first from Illinois. Wesley has track speed yet is also football tough. Wesley can and will make all the catches, runs very good routes and has hands. Wesley will be a handful for any opposing defensive backs to handle here and I expect another solid showing for Wesley on Saturday.
RB James Butler (5-foot-9, 195 pounds) Wheaton St. Francis- a lack of junior film is honestly the only real hangup I see from Butler having more than early offers from Temple and Eastern Illinois. Butler transferred last year from Bartlett to St. Francis and needed to sit out his junior season. Butler has a great mix of speed and power and will no question can and will hang with the elite group of running backs on Saturday.
RB Jarvion Franklin(6-foot-0, 214 pounds) Andrew- yet another under-recruited prospect here. Has all of the tools and attributes of a top flight running back prospect. Has size, speed and strength. Runs well, is very fluid in drills and just carries himself well on and off the field. While Franklin might not be at the top of the top at his position he's not too far off. A good showing on Saturday could boost his rankings even higher.
DE Will Colmery(6-foot-5, 240 pounds) Nazareth Academy - a big kid that I felt showed well both in person and on tape for the 2012 season. Has a very big wingspan and has the frame to add more weight and strength. I'm still a bit stunned that at least some of the lower D-1/1-AA schools haven't offered Colmery just yet. Needs to come out and prove he belongs with a very good group of defensive linemen. Colmery also needs to win some one on ones. A big day on Saturday could earn Colmery some stars.
DT Steven Richardson (5-foot-11, 280 pounds) Chicago Mount Carmel- Minnesota verbal commit. Speaking of star rankings he currently has none per Rivals and that's just wrong. Richardson is a perfect NG type who will battle all shapes and sizes. Terrific mix of brute force and quickness and Richardson has a chance on Saturday to establish himself in a big way from a rankings/stars standpoint. I see Richardson easily as a mid three star kid to start. If Richardson was three inches taller he would have 30 offers and be a potential four star already just based off of his tape.
WR Simmie Cobbs(6-foot-4, 207 pounds) Montini Catholic- another transfer victim from the 2012 season. Cobbs transferred into Montini last summer and also had to sit out the season (IHSA rules). Cobbs is also a standout basketball player who brings his hoop skills to the football side. Cobbs is a big target with very good hands, insane length and reach and Cobbs is also not afraid of contact whatsoever. Cobbs has a chance to really impress the national guys on Saturday but this Illinois guy has been impressed with Cobbs since the Core 6 Showcase back in January.
QB Bret Mooney (6-foot-4, 205 pounds) Jacobs- it's not a great overall quarterback class here in Illinois for 2014 yet that doesn't mean we still don't have some talent to watch. Mooney is a very solid kid physically. Mooney throws a big time pass, has a very good arm and touch and he also is a bit under-recruited these days. An event like this is the perfect showcase and a chance to make a name for himself on Saturday.
DL Raphael Canty (6-foot-3, 250 pounds) TF South- pretty hard for this old TF North Meteor to say ANYTHING positive about those damn TF South Rebels, yet Canty is my type of kid and player. Canty has played linebacker and some tight end as well for the Rebels and veteran head coach Tom Padjen since his freshman season. Canty I feel is a DT type who has the physical makeup to add size and bulk at the college level. Canty is already in the 250-260 pound range and moves very well for his size. Canty is another sleeper type with a chance to make a name for himself. My biggest question is can Canty handle the serious step up in competition here on Saturday?
DB Deontae Brown (6-foot-2, 200 pounds) Chicago Mount Carmel- Western Michigan verbal commit. Brown gave the WMU Broncos his verbal commitment a few weeks ago, but the recruiting process will NOT stop for him this fall as several Big Ten level schools are finally starting to come around on this talent. Brown has size, strength and all of the physical tools needed to be a big time safety at the college level. Brown on tape is a major hitter and plays very physical at all times. Brown is also a prospect who is still growing and developing physically and his best football is still way ahead of him. You've all been warned. Again.
Make sure to visit the EDGY Nation and find several other High Risers to Watch on Saturday. An EDGY Nation exclusive.
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