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March 24, 2011

Carolinas first up for VTO camps

MORE: VTO page | VTO talent tour | Five-star academies

The first weekend of the Rivals.com/VTO Sports Elite 100 Showcases is quickly approaching as the events hit the Carolinas in less than two weeks. Both the South Carolina and North Carolina camps will be loaded with talent and remaining spots are limited. Led by players such as defensive tackle Carlos Watkins, both events will have headliners and many sleepers will be found as well.

The first event is on Saturday, April 2 at York Comprehensive High School in York, S.C., where Jadeveon Clowney's former coach, Bobby Carroll, has now taken over. Carroll, who led the nation's No. 1 player through the recruiting process last year, will speak to the players regarding the process and what to expect. Following that, the players will be tested in the 40-yard-dash, short shuttle and vertical jump. Positional drills and one-on-ones will follow as the prospects will be coached up by former NFL players such as Mo Collins (Oakland Raiders), Brenston Buckner (Carolina Panthers), Natrone Means (San Diego Chargers), Ethan Horton (Oakland Raiders), Anthony Wright (Dallas Cowboys) and Myron Bell (Pittsburgh Steelers).

Many say the talent in South Carolina is down in 2012, but don't tell that to players such as Shaquille Lawson, Jonathan McLaughlin, Devontre Parnell, T.J. Burrell, Cordrea Tankersley, Casey Gladney, Justin Meredith and Jay Jay McCullough, who are all expected to be in attendance.

Lawson, a 6-foot-3, 240-pounder from Central South (S.C.) D.W. Daniel, is already committed to Clemson but that won't stop him from coming out to compete. McLaughlin, a 6-foot-5, 280-pounder from Mauldin, S.C., has early offers from Wake Forest and East Carolina while Parnell, a 5-foot-11, 170-pounder from Winnsboro (S.C.) Fairfield Central, has offers from Illinois and Kentucky.

Burrell, a 6-foot, 190-pound linebacker from Goose Creek, S.C., has offers from both in state powers Clemson and South Carolina while Tankersley, a 6-foot-2, 195-pound athlete from Aiken (S.C.) Silver Bluff, also has the two offers. Gladney, a 6-foot-1, 180-pound athlete from Columbia, S.C., has early offers from Kentucky, Tennessee and Cincinnati, while Meredith, a 6-foot-5, 210-pounder has offers from Clemson, Auburn, LSU, North Carolina, N.C. State and others. McCullough, a 6-foot-4, 225-pound athlete from Fort Mill (S.C.) Nation Ford, has an early Clemson offer with more to come.

VTO SPORTS ELITE 100
Here's a look at the 2011 schedule for the Rivals.com/VTO Sports Elite 100 Showcases:
April 2 - York, S.C.Facebook page
April 3 - Charlotte, N.C.Facebook page
April 9 - Marietta, Ga.Facebook page
April 10 - Birmingham, Ala.Facebook page
April 17 - Richmond, Va.Facebook page
Other notables include Greer (S.C.) Blue Ridge quarterback Caleb Rowe, a 6-foot-3, 182-pounder earning a lot of early interest, North Charleston (S.C.) Fort Dorchester quarterback Ethan Long, a 6-foot-4, 225-pounder who is rising on many lists. Winnsboro (S.C.) Fairfield Central offensive lineman Iyan Roseborough is also gaining interest, as is his teammate Ryan Raley.

The next day, the Rivals.com/VTO Sports Elite 100 hits Charlotte, N.C., and the home of five-star offensive tackle D.J. Humphries. The 6-foot-5, 275-pounder was one of 12 five-star prospects named last week by Rivals.com. While Humphries will be in attendance he won't be working out. However, the event that is being held on Sunday, April 3 at Humphries' school, Mallard Creek High School in Charlotte, is still loaded with talent.

Mallard Creek head coach Mike Palmieri, who helped four-star quarterback Marquise Williams through the process last year, will speak to the players regarding the process and what to expect. Like in South Carolina, the players will be tested in the 40-yard-dash, short shuttle and vertical jump, and then begin positional drills and one-on-ones coached up by the former NFL players.

In addition to Humphries, many top prospects from North Carolina will be on hand including two of his teammates with early offers. Wide receiver Jamel Harbison, a 6-foot, 191-pounder, has early offers from Virginia, West Virginia and Minnesota while running back Jela Duncan has a Duke offer. Duncan stands 5-foot-10 and weighs 190 pounds.

Two defensive linemen lead a strong group of prospects at the event as Forest City (N.C.) Chase defensive tackle Carlos Watkins and Shelby (N.C.) Crest defensive tackle Jonathan Bullard will compete. Watkins and Bullard have offers from programs like Alabama, Florida, Clemson, South Carolina and Georgia Tech to go along with in state offers from North Carolina, NC State, Duke and Wake Forest. Watkins stands 6-foot-4 and weighs 275 pounds while Bullard is 6-foot-4 and 255.

Monroe (N.C.) Sun Valley wide receiver Jody Fuller, Charlotte (N.C.) Phillip O Berry Academy of Tech teammates Nick Dawson and Germone Hopper, Cary (N.C.) Panther Creek tight end Daniel Beilinson, Hope Mills (N.C.) South View linebacker Dahman McKinnon, Leland (N.C.) North Brunswick tight end Keilin Rayner, Greenville (N.C.) Rose tight end Anthony Rook, Deep Run (N.C.) South Lenoir defensive tackle K'Hadree Hooker and Roxboro (N.C.) Person Senior offensive lineman Casey Lawson and others are also all set to compete.

Fuller, a 6-foot, 200-pounder, has offers from Clemson, South Carolina, North Carolina, N.C. State, Michigan, Tennessee, Virginia and many others, while teammates Dawson and Hopper, checking in at 6-foot-3, 228 pounds and 6-foot, 165 pounds, have offers from Auburn, Clemson, North Carolina, N.C. State, Tennessee and more.

Beilinson, a 6-foot-5, 220-pound tight end, has early offers from N.C. State, Duke, East Carolina, Arizona State and Vanderbilt, while McKinnon, a 6-foot-2, 200-pounder, is an early commitment to Virginia Tech. Rayner, a 6-foot-3, 210-pounder, has Clemson, Duke and East Carolina so far while Rook, a 6-foot-3, 215-pounder, has a Wake offer.

Rounding out the Carolina prospects with offers are Hooker, a 6-foot-2, 280-pounder, and Lawson, a 6-foot-4, 280-pounder. Hooker has offers from Auburn, North Carolina, NC State, Georgia Tech, South Carolina, Virginia Tech and others while Lawson has an early offer from UNC.

Coaches with prospects with D-I ability and interest or players being heavily recruited can e-mail mike@rivals.com for more information on how to attend.



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