Florida Stars Shine
D'Angleo McCray
D'Angleo McCray
Scout.com
Posted Mar 20, 2006


JACKSONVILLE, FL -- High quality coaches. Beautiful weather. Great athletes. Those seem to be a common trend when any combine event comes to the state of Florida. Sunday was no different, as Scout.com's All-American Combine Tour made its annual stop in Jacksonville. On the practice fields of Jacksonville University, over 150 players tested and competed.

The camp was loaded with quality football players and athletes and several of them left a major impact on the coaches and people of Scout.com, an official selection partner of the U.S. Army All-American Game.

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MVP D'Angelo McCray proved why he's being recruited as hard as any player in the state right now. At 6-foot-4 and 283 pounds, McCray looked extremely impressive everywhere he went. Whether it was ripping off a 4.88/40 on grass or dominating the D-Line drills or catching every ball thrown his way at tight end, the talented junior made things look easy on Sunday. While he enjoys playing tight end, it's pretty clear that he's a legit All-American candidate on the defensive side of the ball.

"I had a lot of fun out here today," McCray said. "It's just good to come out here and enjoy all the competition. I saw some new things, competed with guys from all over, and just had fun. I wanted to come out here and show people that I'm one of the best."

Several other players could challenge McCray for MVP honors, including Orlando Edgewater's Lorenzo Edwards, Miami Pace's DeMarcus Van Dyke, and Sandalwood's Jacoby Monroe. Edwards, who plays safety in a linebacker's body, is a man among boys when he's on the field. His physical upside is off the charts. When he lines up at cornerback, he just beats people up. He's quiet, yet very confident. Edwards looked exactly what a preseason All-American should look like.

Monroe, who sat out his junior season, came out to enjoy the event. At 6-foot-2 and 280 pounds, he dominated from start to finish. His football skills are off the charts and there's a reason why he's already received several major college offers.

"Today was fun," he said. "It was a good experience, I'm glad I came. I heard the Pouncey twins had signed up to come so I wish they would have been here but oh well. There was some good competition."

Van Dyke, who made the 5-hour trip from Miami, arrived with just one scholarship offer (FIU). A lot of people knew about him coming in but many weren't expecting what they saw. Van Dyke was, by far, the fastest player at the event. He's effortless when he runs. He worked in at both wide receiver and corner but he projects as a DB in college. You can be sure his performance will open the eyes of more coaches.

"I wanted to come here and show people what I'm capable of," he said. "I could have done better. I'm gonna try coming to the one at FAU (May 13). I liked it a lot here and I'm glad I came."

Now lets break things down by position and look at who some of the top players were.

Quarterbacks: Coach Tim Glanton, who worked with this group, talked about two that stood out to him. "(Will Saffen from Daytona Beach Seabreeze) was pretty darn good. He had the best footwork. He has an active arm and he's smart. Plus, he can throw a nice deep ball. The other kid (Robert Marve from Tampa Plant) throws one heckuva deep ball. His footwork's not as good as the (Saffen) kid but he throws a really nice ball. His drops are very quick."

Another very impressive quarterback on hand, I thought, was Chris Forcier, who made the trip all the way from San Diego. The talented signal caller has a nice frame and has tremendous athletic ability. He's coming off an outstanding junior season and you could see why he has several Div. 1 offers already.

Running Backs: St. Augustine's Rai-Shawn Wilson showed up 20 minutes late today and after being a little unsure about whether to jump into the action after a tweaked hamstring at his school last week, he decided to participate. Good idea, as Wilson was very impressive from start to finish. "He's impressive because he's just got so much raw speed," said Ben Barrick of Competitive Edge Sports. "He's got a lot of talent."

Wide Receivers: It was a pair of Georgia stars who stole the show at receiver. William White and D.J. Donley were very impressive, as was Gulf High's Shawn Williamson, who ran one of the fastest 40-times of the day.

Tight Ends: The top player at this position was John I. Leonard's Nick Provo. At 6-foot-3 and 225 pounds, Provo tested well and then dominated during drills. He caught everything thrown his direction. "He's just real fundamentally sound," Barrick said. "He's just a football player. I don't know what he ran or anything but the kid just understands the game really well and knows how to get after it."

Although he has bounced back and forth between tight end and fullback at his school, Deland's Ricky Kay looked impressive on Sunday. With so many college teams now using H-Backs as opposed to a straight tight end or fullback, someone like Kay, who has soft hands and good athletic ability, is definitely a kid to keep an eye on.

Offensive Linemen: The O-Linemen were coached by Jerry Odom, a former college assistant who is one of the top young coaches in the state of Georgia. "The kid who looks big-time to me is the kid from St. Pete Catholic (Elvis Fisher)," Odom said. "He is the total package. He has everything you look for, including those long arms. I also liked the kid from Nease (Clyde Yandell) and the kid from Lake Howell (Billy Offutt). They're both talented kids but they're both a little raw still."

Defensive Linemen: While I talked about McCray and Monroe already, another kid who opened some eyes is Lake City Columbia's Rene Perry. "He reminds me a lot of the (Kendrick) Stewart kid from Lakeland a couple years back," Odom said. "He's one neck of a nose guard. He's a little short but he's a player."

Linebackers: Josh Cragin was the top player in the group on Sunday. He tested well and then looked very impressive during drills. "We teach these kids quickly out here," Barrick said. "He's one of those kids who understands things very well and picks up on things quickly. He plays downhill. He's quick, he has good hands, and he just knows how to play the position."

Defensive Backs: Edwards and Van Dyke werent the only standout performers in the secondary on Sunday. Charlton Sinclair, one of the top safety prospects in the state, looked very impressive. His testing numbers were very good and he proved why he's one of the best players in the city of Jacksonville.

Sunday's event in Jacksonville was very successful. On behalf of all my Scout.com partners, we would like to thank all the coaches, players, and parents who made this event such a success. There were some kids who emerged as legit All-American candidates. There were kids who put their names on the recruiting map. We'll have complete coverage of the camp, including testing results, on our website, ScoutCombines.com. We'll see ya in Durham, North Carolina (or Boca Raton, Florida for me. If you'd like to register for the other Florida event, please email me at mbakas@scout.com).


Related Stories
Video: D'Angelo McCray & Jacoby Monroe
 -by NoleDigest.com  Mar 20, 2006
Jacksonville - McCray Named MVP
 -by ScoutCombines.com  Mar 20, 2006
Edwards is Making His Point
 -by IrishEyes.com  Mar 21, 2006

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