Prospect Evaluation: Tre Turner

New Orleans Holy Cross two-sport star Tre Turner will play football and baseball for Arizona State. Here's our take on Turner as a football prospect.

At 5-foot-9 and 198 pounds, Tre Turner is the No. 62 running back prospect nationally, No. 21 in the South and No. 2 in Louisiana. A two-sport star who will also play baseball (outfield) at ASU, Turner was in the USA Baseball 17-and-under National Developmental Program.

Turner is known for his speed, with the Times-Picayune calling him the "best home run threat" of the running backs in the state's 2016 class. He purportedly turned in a 4.38 second 40-yard dash time, and ran in the 4.4s at Florida State and Mississippi State last summer.

In 10 games as junior, Turner had 858 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns for a New Orleans, Holy Cross High School team that went 5-5. As a senior his production decreased to 551 rushing yards on 154 carries (3.6 yards per carry) with six touchdowns and 222 receiving yards on 15 catches with two touchdowns. While he played in 10 games, Turner said he was only healthy in about five games and played the rest with a shoulder injury. 

In October of 2014, Turner committed to Mississippi State, but ultimately reopened his recruitment in January of 2015, picking up a reported offer from Texas A&M at that time. Arizona, Arkansas, Cal, Houston, Kentucky, Missouri, Ole Miss, Miss St, Texas A&M, South Carolina, Utah and Vanderbilt are some of the 20 or so schools to have reportedly offered Turner during the course of his recruitment.

Turner plays low to the ground and is a patient back who likes to feel his way to the hole and then use an impressive linear burst of speed to try to break runs. He has relatively quick feet he turns over well without being choppy, and is very physically composed, which on film belies his impressive overall speed. He has a good top end gear, which a lot of similar players lack and is one of his better attributes. In traffic, he's more of an arcing style runner than a violent, aggressive cutter, or a back who transitions at speed, which is an area he'll have to further develop in order to maximize his acceleration and high RPM motor.

With a naturally low operation base and the way he feels for run lanes, Turner flows well into space and can gain the edge effectively. This also makes him a good candidate as a stretch zone runner and receiving target on the full range of screens, both inside and out. He projects to have full service ability within the ASU scheme, even though there's not enough film to really determine his capability as a route runner in more space with how ASU uses its backs in the slot. But he uses his feet a bit like Demario Richard on screens and probably is a similar type of route runner.

The strength and conditioning program in college will be critically important for Turner. He tends to have good forward lean through contact and can additional yards, but is not as elusive a runner as he can be given his lower center of gravity and the type of open field speed he possesses. He doesn't have the separating power cuts at speed that enable runners of his type to truly flourish at the high college level and beyond. This can be further refined to some degree though with a lot of lower half and core strength and flexibility work, however. How much will ultimately determine his ceiling. He needs to become more elusive around would-be tacklers, and increase his shiftiness, as well as his power through contact. 

As a blocker, Turner needs an overhaul of his approach. He doesn't tend to attack what's in front of him or use his hands properly, instead choosing to use his arms and really get in the way of defenders instead of delivering the blow. But he does have a good base here, and a lot of it is developing the mindset and technique.

Turner should be a solid mid-tier Pac-12 running back with a versatile skill set and someone who makes sense as an ASU target from a schematic fit standpoint. He's very much in the mold of some of the types of backs the staff has recruited since arriving in Tempe.

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