January 2, 2008

Offense-Defense: Wednesday's Daily Rewind

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Rivals.com takes a look at the top five news items of the day at the Offense-Defense All-American Bowl in Fort Lauderdale in the Daily Rewind. Each day Rivals.com will breakdown the biggest news, player injuries and updated recruiting news in a compact and easy to digest format. The game is set to be played on Friday, January 4th at 8 p.m. Players attended their second day of practice and will continue to do so through the end of the week.

1. Armond Armstead Blows Up In His First Day

Yesterday Rivals100 lineman Armond Armstead sat out of practice due to a injured knee. It was unclear if he would practice this week at all. Those questions were answered on Wednesday when the Southern Cal commitment made a huge impression in practice from the get go. For the most part, the West offensive linemen struggled to contain Armstead due to his quick and explosive first step and outstanding moves. Numerous times it took Armstead just a second to get into the backfield, blowing by linemen. The only lineman that seemed to slow him down a bit was Alameda Ta'amu.

2. A Cold Front hits South Florida

A cold front blew into the Fort Lauderdale area on Wednesday and made practice brutally cold for both the morning and afternoon sessions. If that wasn't bad enough the wind made things even worse, stopping 30-yard field goals well before the uprights and causing passes to veer off. The weather dipped to approximately 40-degrees. The cold clearly had an effect on the players as the East struggled to pass the ball more than 10-yards. The West running backs struggled particularly in the morning with fumbles, likely due to the intense cold on their hands.

3. Glenn Harbin Makes a Change

Multiple players discussed their recruiting situation this afternoon, but nothing was exactly new for any of them except Rivals250 defensive end Glenn Harbin. The Mobile prospect has changed up his list slightly claiming his final five schools for visits are now Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, LSU and Florida. In other recruiting news, cornerback Victor Johnson announced he plans to take a visit to Oklahoma in late January.

4. A Quarterback Battle is Brewing on Team West

Yesterday we spoke very highly of quarterback Nate Stanley, the Oklahoma prospect continued to impress today. Although he may have seen his top spot fall to Arizona verbal Matt Scott who put on a show and at this point appears to be the frontrunner for the West's starting job. Despite the wind, Scott hit a couple nice fade routes and clearly got the most reps of the three quarterbacks.

5. Return teams finalized

Both the East and West squads looked to finalize their return units on Wednesday. The East will focus on undersized 5-foot-6, 160-pound defensive back Matt Brown on punt and kickoff returns. He'll be joined on kickoffs by Florida State commit Jermaine Thomas. On the flipside, the West's primary return man will be receiver Kemonte Bateman, running back Jamal Womble and receiver Allante Battle will see time on kickoff returns as well. Of the return men seen today, Bateman looked the best, cutting one kickoff up past midfield before being touched.

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