« February 2011 | Main | April 2011 »

39 posts from March 2011

March 24, 2011

Youth standout Tim Irvin in the spotlight

Irvin1
The nationally-syndicated Sports Stars of Tomorrow (SSOT) will feature Miami area youth football standout running back Tim Irvin this weekend in its program about the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl from January at the Alamodome in San Antonio. Irvin was the offensive MVP for the winning East team in the 8th-Grade, unlimited weight limit game, which will be featured along with a unique personal profile spotlight. SSOT airs Saturday at 11:30 a.m. on FOX-affiliate WSVN in the local market. He was joined by fellow Richmond Giants’ teammate Jaquan Johnson who played linebacker in the Bowl. Irvin is a two-time Pop Warner National Champion and one of the country’s best youth players.

Sports Stars of Tomorrow is hosted by legendary broadcaster Pat Summerall and features the brightest young stars in sports and is the only high-school sports program in national syndication. Started in 2005, SSOT airs in over 90 percent of home in the United States and has featured such future stars as LeBron James, Sam Bradford and John Wall, as well as U.S. Army All-Americans Chris Wells, Tim Tebow and Matt Barkley. The show is partners with the website PrepTicket.com, which features clips of the show in its national section.

SSOT will portray the exciting All-American Bowl week experience of the Eastbay Youth Bowl and Combine athletes. It shows viewers the Eastbay Youth Bowl experience through the athletes from 8th-Grade, unlimited weight limit game. This year’s 7th-Grade game and the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and the U.S. Army Combine are also spotlighted, as well as running back Sony Michel’s breakout game in the 2010 7th-Grade game. The Eastbay Youth All-Americans are also shown being recognized on the sidelines of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and working hard in practice while bonding with teammates and getting first-class training and performance gear. The segment features the youth athletes getting a chance to meet with the U.S. Army All-Americans, including former U.S. Army All-American C.J. Spiller, who also addressed the All-Americans.

The 3rd annual Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl, presented by Football University (FBU) and Eastbay, had four exciting games at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, featuring the top 7th and 8th-Grade talent from across North America. The Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl consists of three East vs. West all-star games, one for the top 40 7th graders with a 175-pound limit, one for the top 40 8th graders with a 185-pound limit and a third game featuring the top 40 8th graders with no weight limit. New this year was a fourth game—the USA-Canada Youth Bowl. All of the games aired live on www.eastbay.com and www.allamericangames.tv.

Last year, many of the top players in the bowl received college interest and national attention from media outlets such as USA Today, Sports Illustrated and the New York Times. The 2010 game was also the unveiling of YouTube sensation Sony Michel who ran away with MVP honors after a four-touchdown, 275-yard performance.

Several thousand youth all-stars were nominated for the elite honor of competing in one of the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl games. Athletes had to fill out a nomination form and submit a highlight tape.  The selection committee, which consists of Football University’s regional directors and scouts, work year round with hundreds of local youth football coaches and commissioners who help identify top athletes.

For more information on the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl and its related events, visit: www.footballuniversity.org.  National sponsors of the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl include the U.S. Army, adidas, Eastbay, EFX Performance, Gatorade, NCSA, Schutt, TapouT, and the Youth Football Coaches Association.

March 23, 2011

HERALD SPOTLIGHT: Trashaun Ward

Ward22
Having the opportunity to watch many of the athletes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties when they begin playing football at the youth football level, the Miami Herald will continue to shine the spotlight on many athletes during the pre-spring, spring and summer.

With the chance to see the athletes away from the football field as well, we can bring you up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the nation - right here in our own backyard.

Don't forget that the exposure continues on FACEBOOK (Herald Recruiting) and via Twitter @ larryblustein.

PLAYER: Trashaun Ward

YEAR: 2012

SCHOOL: Coral Reef

CITY: Miami

POSITION: Athlete

HEIGHT: 5-8

WEIGHT: 165
HEAD FOOTBALL COACH: Chevas Clements

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: If you follow football in South Florida, you are fully aware by now, that athletes like this pop up all the time, finding their way into the spotlight and then settle in and become yet another D1 prospect.

Having watched him for the past three years, we all know that judging him by the lack of size or weight completely takes away with this imp-ressive athlete does to help his team win. Refreshing that someone like this plays up to seven positions, but gets no love from anyone!

Competing in one of those most talented districts, he managed to chalk up over 1,000 (650 rushing, 350 receiving and a number of return yards) total yards. By the way, he was also the starting safety on a team that made huge strides in 2010.

His speed and athletic ability have drawn praise from opposing coaches as well as college coaches who have had the chance to watch his speed and athleticism.

Will be a catalyst for a Barracuda team that also features such standouts as Vernon Davis, Darius Hall, Cory Griffin, Roosevelt Donaldson, Tyler Rosenblatt, Stephen McGriff, Lamar Bynum and Brendon Clements.

HERALD STATEWIDE INFORMATION
Statewide Information

van der Kuyp, Mastrole & Strong on radio

Maroonefronters1
Different night, earlier time this week as the Maroone High School Gridiron Report returns to WQAM (560 AM) on Thursday night (8-9) with an impressive guest list.


Larry Blustein has been busy attending camps, combines and 7-on-7 events and has plenty of information to share with everyone this week as he is joined by Hialeah fast-rising athlete Gheirry van der Kuyp, quarterback guru Ken Mastrole and University of Louisville head coach Charlie Strong.

MAKING A STATEMENT
He may have started his career as an unknown, but this winter and spring has been extremely special for van der Kuyp, who led the South Florida Football Fire to the championship of the Badger 7-on-7 tournament.

Whether as a quarterback, where his pinpoint passes and leadership have attracted plenty of attention - or as a receiver, who simply overwhelms many defensive backs, van der Kuyp has elevated himself to a different level.

Offers are pouring in for this 6-2.5, 190-pounder. He will join the show at 8:15.

PASSING FANCY
Running the highly successful Mastrole Passing Academy, this one time Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons and University of Maryland standout has spent the past few years developing some of the top young quarterback prospects.

His year-round passing camps and clinics has opened up an avenue in South and Southwest Florida that has never been there before.

From Iowa-bound Jake Rudock to some of the top rising players for the Classes of 2012, 2013 and even 2014, Mastrole, who worked the Elite 11 event in Orlando, has set standards in teaching and coaching.

Mastrole will join the show at 8:30.

A STRONG START
The Big 3 in the state of Florida withstood one of the most impressive out-of-state recruiting jobs this past year when Strong and his Louisiville staff - spearheaded by former University of Miami coach Clint Hurtt - came south and landed some of the top-rated prospects in the state, including Miami-Dade's No. 1 player, Teddy Bridgewater and the No. 2 player, Gerod Holliman from Southridge.

After waiting 27 years for an opportunity to be a head coach, Strong made the most of his first season by leading the Cardinals to a bowl game for the first time in three seasons and becoming the first Louisville coach to earn BIG EAST Coach of the Year accolades.

Strong led the Cardinals to a 7-6 record, but had the Cardinals playing hard and consistent football all season. Louisville was in every football game it played, losing six games by a total of 49 points.

During his head tenure at Florida, he has coached 13 All-Americans, a National Defensive Player of the Year, a Jack Tatum Award winner, two SEC Defensive Freshmen of the Year, two Thorpe Award finalists, two Nagurski Trophy finalists and the 2008 Chevrolet Defensive Player of the Year. He has developed seven first-round NFL Draft picks and 18 players that were selected in the third round or higher. This year, cornerback Joe Haden was the seventh pick in the NFL Draft to the Cleveland Browns, while Carlos Dunlap, Brandon Spikes, Jermaine Cunningham and Major Wright were all selected in the first three rounds.

Strong will join the Maroone Gridiron Report at 8:45.

You can listen to the show on www.wqam.com as well as checking out archived information and more high school sports at www.sfhighschoolsports.com.

March 22, 2011

HERALD SPOTLIGHT: Marshall Morgan

MarshallMorgan1
Having the opportunity to watch many of the athletes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties when they begin playing football at the youth football level, the Miami Herald will continue to shine the spotlight on many athletes during the pre-spring, spring and summer.

With the chance to see the athletes away from the football field as well, we can bring you up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the nation - right here in our own backyard.

Don't forget that the exposure continues on FACEBOOK (Herald Recruiting) and via Twitter @ larryblustein.

PLAYER: Marshall Morgan

YEAR: 2012

SCHOOL: Archbishop McCarthy

CITY: Southwest Ranches

POSITION: K

HEIGHT: 6-3

WEIGHT: 195

HEAD FOOTBALL COACH: John Timmins

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Having had the pleasure of watching some of the elite kickers throughout the years, including Sebastian Janikowski, there have been few who have been at this level for this period of time.

Since his special teams coach Tim Conrad first began working with him, this is kicker and punter who has set standards with one of the most gifted legs around.

This is a two-time All-State selection for a reason. As he awaits for his third selection in his first three years, this University of Georgia-bound prospect boasts a year in which he made 15-of-16 field goals (long of 53 yards) and converted eight over 43 yards. He is also an exceptional punter as well.

His work ethic is the main reason why he has elevated his elite status over the past three years. He attends camps and workouts year round - all in an effort to be the best in the country, which he is already considered by many who work in the industry.

HERALD STATEWIDE INFORMATION
Statewide Information

March 21, 2011

HERALD SPOTLIGHT: Robert Conyers

Conyers1
Having the opportunity to watch many of the athletes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties when they begin playing football at the youth football level, the Miami Herald will continue to shine the spotlight on many athletes during the pre-spring, spring and summer.

With the chance to see the athletes away from the football field as well, we can bring you up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the nation - right here in our own backyard.

Don't forget that the exposure continues on FACEBOOK (Herald Recruiting) and via Twitter @ larryblustein.

PLAYER: Robert Conyers

YEAR: 2012

SCHOOL: G. Holmes Braddock

CITY: Miami

POSITION: OT

HEIGHT: 6-4

WEIGHT: 270
HEAD FOOTBALL COACH: Frank Rojas

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: First watched him play last year in a big game against rival Coral Park and was impressed by the way he was able to to elevate his play against a number of athletic players the Rams had.

Great footwork that is still getting better, this is a leaner, more athletic lineman who plays tackle now, but could be moved because of his ability to pick things up quickly.

Whether it's a combine setting or in a game, you can easily see why this is a football prospect who will only get better as he gets stronger and becomes more familiar with competing against stronger and faster defensive players at the next level.

What has already gotten him noticed is his athletic frame and footwork, which is easy to spot in a workout, combine or see him during the course of a game.

HERALD STATEWIDE INFORMATION
Statewide Information

Elite Scouting Services Combine

CombineLifting
FORT LAUDERDALE - Most high school football combines are pretty much the reflection of those who host them and put them on.

With so many different people and organizations rushing to get as many football prospects to their event, there is always something that is missing from those who believe that all that needs to be done is test and throw the ball around.

This past Sunday, Elite Scouting Services, which has over 50 combined years of running events that send athletes and their parents away with answers and a better understanding of the process, hosted one of the spring's best outings.

Over 275 of South Florida's emerging prospects came out to run, lift, play football and listen to the reality of this entire process is all about.

ESS founder and President Charles Fishbein and his quality staff have always provided an event that people talk about for years, and the South Florida stop of this combine that will head to Tampa and the Jacksonville area this spring, was easily one of the most complete events that will take place anywhere.

"First of all, we have been running these events for so long, there is a template of success that you have to follow," said Fishbein. "Anyone can host one of these combines, charge the kids a whole lot of money and send them away with very little in the way of recruiting knowledge."

What ESS accomplished on Sunday was not only bringing athletes in from Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach, but the opportunity to show parents and athletes that there is a whole lot more to a combine than getting a few stopwatches out and throwing the ball around.

"This entire combine was easily the best I've been to," said Dade Christian 2012 quarterback Bilal Marshall, who was one of the players who turned heads with his accurate arm and athleticism. "Most combines don't get into the flow like this one did."

From Homestead to the Palm Beaches, it was all about learning and coming away something different. It also showcased how much talent there is in this region - in all classes.

Among the top 2012 players on hand was Hialeah athlete Gheirry van der Kuyp, who dazzled the week before in Tampa as a quarterback for the South Florida Football Fire 7-on-7 team. This weekend, van der Kuyp was creating mismatches as a receiver.

"This was a lot of fun," van der Kuyp said. "There were a lot of very god players out here, which heated up in the one-on-one drills."

In addition to van der Kuyp, other 2012 players who looked good included Coral Reef defensive back Vernon Davis and running back Trashawn Ward, Hallandale quarterback Abe Coleman, Jupiter Christian top-flight QB Kedric Bostic, and Homestead receiver Herbert Waters and linebacker James Burgess Jr.

"We came last year and wanted to return this year," said Burgess, who ran well and did extremely well in the drills. "This was a very good event."

In addition, St. Thomas Aquinas quarterback Max Lescano was on hand with DE teammate Joey Nicoletto. So were Miami Beach standout Ricardo Louis, Miramar offensive lineman Kevin Gonzalez and defensive lineman Willie Paisley, Delray American Heritage OL Arthur Crouse and Northwestern quarterback E.J. Hilliard and fast-emerging receiver Amari Cooper.

Other 2012 players who turned some heads were Boyd Anderson athlete Bruce Natson, Hollywood Hills DE Jean Marc-Charles, Felix Varela WR John Green, Braddock OL Robert Conyers, Fort Lauderdale receiver Kolby Gray, Chaminade-Madonna DE Eric Kinsey, DL Quinton Bynoe and receiver Fred McRae.

Ely defensive back Adrian Burton was impressive. So was his teammate OL Trevian Perdue, American DB Larry Hope and Boyd Anderson speedster Daniel Gray, who was easily one of the fastest on hand.

The Class of 2013 also showcased some rising juniors such as Miami Palmetto's Cornell Gilmore and quarterback Troy Cook. Stranahan receiver Dionte Taylor and American Heritage Plantation QB Tyler Cogswell were also head-turners.

The Class of 2014 also took center stage on this day, as it has throughout the first few months of the off season. While American Heritage standout Sony Michel was on hand, he didn't take part in the drills, but Chaminade QB Sean White, Miami Westminster Christian QB Hunter Boyett, St. Thomas DB Al Harris Jr. and Ely QB Tyquan Fields all made a lasting impression.

"How can you not be impressed with the athletes who came ready to learn and make a statement," said Fishbein. "The objective of an event like this is to have everyone leave happy and appreciate the experience."

There were many more athletes on hand for the event who we will continue to spotlight throughout the spring. Also check out the photos (FACEBOOK - HERALD RECRUITNG) and videos on South Florida High School Sports – sfhighschoolsports.com/ and Generation Nexxt - www.gennexxt.com

March 18, 2011

HERALD SPOTLIGHT: Daniel Braverman

Daniel Braverman1 US
Having the opportunity to watch many of the athletes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties when they begin playing football at the youth football level, the Miami Herald will continue to shine the spotlight on many athletes during the pre-spring, spring and summer.

With the chance to see the athletes away from the football field as well, we can bring you up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the nation - right here in our own backyard.

Don't forget that the exposure continues on FACEBOOK (Herald Recruiting) and via Twitter @ larryblustein.

PLAYER: Daniel Braverman

YEAR: 2012

SCHOOL: University

CITY: Davie

POSITION: WR/S/PK

HEIGHT: 5-10

WEIGHT: 175

HEAD FOOTBALL COACH: Roger Harriott

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: If you have ever had the pleasure of seeing this gifted football player compete, you would be sold on the fact that there may not be a more versatile talent in the state.

While some want to minimize what this Division 1 football prospect is all about, those in the know that when it comes to valuable, here is an MVP - at any level - and on any team.

First off, he rarely leaves the field during the football game. After catching a touchdown, he changes shoes and kicks the extra point. He then kicks off and plays in the secondary, where he is among the fastest (4.47) players in South Florida.

In addition to catching the ball, defending and kicking, he also returns kicks for the Suns, who finished second in the state this past season at the 2B level with just one loss!

HERALD STATEWIDE INFORMATION
Statewide Information

March 17, 2011

HERALD SPOTLIGHT: Gheirry van der Kuyp

Gherry1
Having the opportunity to watch many of the athletes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties when they begin playing football at the youth football level, the Miami Herald will continue to shine the spotlight on many athletes during the pre-spring, spring and summer.

With the chance to see the athletes away from the football field as well, we can bring you up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the nation - right here in our own backyard.

Don't forget that the exposure continues on FACEBOOK (Herald Recruiting) and via Twitter @ larryblustein.

PLAYER: Gheirry van der Kuyp

YEAR: 2012

SCHOOL: Hialeah

CITY: Hialeah

POSITION: Athlete

HEIGHT: 6-2.5

WEIGHT: 190
HEAD FOOTBALL COACH: Marc Berman

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Having watched his progress over the past three years, which included a stint at Boyd Anderson as a backup quarterback and the as a receiver, this is yet another emerging player we began to evaluate when he wasn't considered a prospect.

Take your pick with where he will play at the next level. While he is a very good athlete, who produces at quarterback, receiver or in the secondary at safety, there is a great chance he will play receiver at the next level.

Tremendous hands, great route running ability and deceptive speed are things that colleges have talked about. Because of a strong promotional coaching staff at Hialeah, his film was out as soon as he began making plays.

He will be used in a number of ways this coming year by the Thoroughbreds Athletically and production wise, he reminds many of North Miami Beach standout Ritchy Desir, who is headed to Syracuse.

HERALD STATEWIDE INFORMATION
Statewide Information

March 16, 2011

HERALD SPOTLIGHT: Erick Hallmon

Hallmon1
Having the opportunity to watch many of the athletes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties when they begin playing football at the youth football level, the Miami Herald will continue to shine the spotlight on many athletes during the pre-spring, spring and summer.

With the chance to see the athletes away from the football field as well, we can bring you up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the nation - right here in our own backyard.

Don't forget that the exposure continues on FACEBOOK (Herald Recruiting) and via Twitter @ larryblustein.

PLAYER: Erick Hallmon

YEAR: 2012

SCHOOL: Cardinal Gibbons

CITY: Fort Lauderdale

POSITION: LB/S

HEIGHT: 6-1

WEIGHT: 200

HEAD FOOTBALL COACH: Mike Morrill

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Yet another prospect we had the opportunity to watch and evaluate when he was in the ninth grade - way before he was on anyone's radar screen.

An outstanding football player who has matured, gotten bigger and learned plenty while being taught well by a very good coaching staff.

While he is a quality linebacker prospect, some have hinted that his aggressive style of play will lend itself to the safety position as well.

Having watched his father play in high school and at the University of Miami, you can see much of the same instincts in both. This is a talented young man who has not gotten the publicity that he was certainly receive this coming year.

HERALD STATEWIDE INFORMATION
Statewide Information

March 15, 2011

HERALD SPOTLIGHT: Christian Hill

Christian Hill
Having the opportunity to watch many of the athletes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties when they begin playing football at the youth football level, the Miami Herald will continue to shine the spotlight on many athletes during the pre-spring, spring and summer.

With the chance to see the athletes away from the football field as well, we can bring you up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the nation - right here in our own backyard.

Don't forget that the exposure continues on FACEBOOK (Herald Recruiting) and via Twitter @ larryblustein.

PLAYER: Christian Hill

YEAR: 2012

SCHOOL: South Dade

CITY: Homestead

POSITION: LB

HEIGHT: 5-11

WEIGHT: 190

HEAD FOOTBALL COACH: Greg Dentino

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: This highly regarded two-sport (wrestling) standout has emerged as one of the top prospects in the state - at a position that helps him showcase, speed, balance and incredible strength.

This is not just another quality athlete, competing at a high athletic level. This is someone who can play the sport of football, and play it very well.

Many felt he was one of the state's elite juniors at the end of the 2010 season because of his productivity on the field, where he led the Buccaneers in tackles.

Can cover extremely well as he is very agile, has tremendous balance and is quick on his feet. This is one of those football talents who does much of his talking with his actions.

HERALD STATEWIDE INFORMATION
Statewide Information