December 14, 2007
Miss. all-stars making most of opportunity
MOBILE, Ala. - Practice has begun for the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star game and while the stars are attracting their share of attention, some lesser known prospects are also taking advantage of their time in the all-star spotlight.
Rivals.com Recruiting Analyst Barry Every took in Mississippi's afternoon session and gives his thoughts on some of the top prospects at the practice.
Expert's View of Mississippi Prospects
Bret Jefcoat, 6-1, 199, QB, Itawamba Agricultural
Committed to Louisiana Tech
Assets: Has a nice delivery and quick release.
Areas for improvement: Needs to gain some overall strength, but he does have a nice frame, so that should come with time.
What was most impressive in practice: His passes over the middle were very accurate, and he is a decent kickoff guy.
Conclusion: I think this is a tremendous pickup for Louisiana Tech. I can see him being a two or three-year starter.
Chris Lofton, 6-1, 165, WR, Raleigh
Assets: Appears to be very quick and showed nice hands.
Areas of improvement: Definitely needs to gain some weight and strength, currently is only around 160 pounds.
What was most impressive in practice: He was one of the few guys that got deep and made a nice reception.
Conclusion: Also is a baseball star (shortstop), which explains his hand-eye coordination. He said he prefers football and I think he will get serious looks from mid-level D-I schools before signing day.
Alonzo Lawrence, 6-1, 187, CB, George County
Assets: Great height for a corner at 6 feet 1, and very good ball skills.
Areas of improvement: Needs to continue to work hard on his academics.
What was most impressive in practice: He has really good hips for a big corner, and goes full speed on every practice snap.
Conclusion: I became aware of Lawrence after my visit to Ocean Springs this fall. He is a definite candidate for a bump up in the rankings. He is also worth signing and placing because he is a big-time prospect that can match up with taller receivers.
Avis Shelton, 6-1, 260, C, West Point
Assets: He has good pad level and quick hands.
Areas of improvement: Needs to work on his pass protection.
What was most impressive in practice: He had excellent lateral movement.
Conclusion: Has a chance to be a center at the mid-level D-I college.
Tobias Smith, 6-4, 292, OG, Columbia Sr.
Assets: Very athletic for 300 pounds, and quick feet.
Areas of improvement: Needs to make sure his weight does not get any heavier than 300 pounds.
What was most impressive in practice: Saw him pull and he was just very fluid for a big guy.
Conclusion: I think this kid is better than a two-star, I have not seen him on film, but I know a couple of the college coaches at the practices were asking: Who is this guy?
Quin Sanford, 6-1, 295, OG, South Panola
Assets: He moves really well for a 295-pounder.
Areas of improvement: He also needs to not get any heavier than he already is.
What was most impressive in practice: His footwork is above average in run blocking and pass protection.
Conclusion: He should make an excellent offensive guard or center for Ole Miss. His current ranking at three stars is probably accurate.
Barry Every is a Football Recruiting Analyst for Rivals.com. He comes to Rivals.com after working in recruiting offices for Mark Richt at the University of Georgia, Bobby Bowden at Florida State University and Mack Brown at the University of North Carolina. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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