There are a handful of big questions heading into The Opening. It begins next Tuesday in Beavertown, Oregon.
The state of Florida leads the way with 27 selections. There are 162 participants in all. Here are ten story lines from the Sunshine state leading into the event.
1.) Is offensive tackle Martez Ivey really the No. 1 recruit in the nation?
Jamie Newberg @JamieNewberg • Dec 17
Was blown away watching Apopka junior OT Martez Ivey on Saturday night. IMO - No. 1 prospect in FLA in '15 class. Upside is off the charts
That was my tweet a few days after the state championship games from Orlando. There, Apopka lost to Homestead South Dade.
I was stunned at the play of their junior offensive tackle Martez Ivey (video just below from that game). This kid's upside is ridiculously high. I mean it's off the charts.
Since mid-December I have had him pegged No. 1 in the state, leaping over cornerback Kevin Toliver (Jacksonville Trinity Christian Academy). Toliver himself is a very unique talent because he's a big, long and athletic cornerback.
Then Scout came out with our initial Scout 100 rankings for the 2015 class. Guess who's No. 1? Yep, it's Mr. Ivey. He's the guy we penciled in as the top dog for this class. With The Opening starting next week will Ivey live up to that hype? Everyone, especially the defensive linemen, will be gunning for his number.
To me, this is one of the biggest storylines of the event. Is he really No. 1 overall? Is Ivey the top offensive tackle in the nation? We will have a much clearer understanding next week.
Ivey is 6-foot-6, 275-pounds. I have covered recruiting since 1992 and I can't recall seeing a prospect with his length. I mean his arms literally go almost to his knees. Even at his size now Ivey looks like he could easily carry an additional 50-pounds. He moves incredibly well. You should see him pull and block on the run. He's just light on his feet and very athletic.
The Blue Darters ran a single-wing T last season. From a standpoint of run blocking you can see Ivey do it all. They would flip flop him, sometimes he would play on the right side, sometimes on left. Ivey has supreme athletic ability for his size. He shows flexibility and the ability to move and bend. Even at his size he plays with good leverage, whether he's coming off the ball at the line of scrimmage and going after a moving target when pulling. Ivey can get to the second level. If he doesn't put a defender on the ground he will sustain his block and drive the opposition backwards.
It's going to be an interesting week watching the offensive tackles, in particular this one from central Florida, as Ivey has a big bull's eye on his jersey.
No. 2 – The Rematch
No. 3 - How will George do?
No. 4 -The State's Top WR Is…
No. 5 - Watch These Two
No. 6 - The McFaddens
No. 7 - WR or S?
No. 8 – Is Toliver Top CB?
No. 9 – Opening Sleepers
No. 10 – Just How Explosive?