Nolan Smith (Photo by Student Sports)

Scout takes a look at the underclassmen prospects who turned heads at The Opening Orlando

DAVENPORT, Fla. - The Opening Orlando was a loaded event among rising-senior prospects, but a handful of underclassmen turned heads in the process.

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Samuel Brooks, 2019 OLB, Miami (Fla.) Northwestern

The debate about his future position, between outside linebacker and defensive end, may be far from over but one thing is sure about Sam Brooks -- he's an athlete. His testing results alone Sunday warranted consideration on Scout's list. He was a top 10 overall Nike Rating performer, checking in at just under 6-foot-2, 200 pounds, logging and impressive 4.62-second 40-yard dash time in the process. But what turns heads more with the edge rusher is a short shuttle time of 4.20 seconds, a top 20 overall time regardless of position. That time would be impressive in any region, even moreso in the fertile state of Florida. The Miami Hurricane legacy recruit holds double digit scholarship offers at this time, including Power-5 extensions from Kentucky and Rutgers.

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Jayion McCluster, 2020 RB, Largo (Fla.) High School

Long and lean, the rising-junior running back prospect can make plays as a runner or as a pass-catcher out of the backfield. McCluster gets up the field in a hurry when he sticks his foot in the ground and he can redirect well after that point, too. In the cat-and-mouse drill, he set up defenders more times than not and held his own in passing drills all afternoon long. Boston College and Iowa State are on board with early offers.

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Trey Sanders, 2019 ATH, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy

The longtime Alabama Crimson Tide verbal commitment checked in as big as we have seen him over the last few years -- 216 pounds. Sanders says "it's all muscle" and a tribute to the IMG Academy program, and it looked like it on Sunday. He navigated through drills well and backed it up with above-average showings in the cat-and-mouse drill and during passing drills. An athlete who is still getting looks as a defensive back at the next level, Sanders does prefer offense and it's not hard to see why with a near ideal frame and strong skill-set. 

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Nolan Smith, 2019 DE, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy

A recent pledge to the homestate Georgia Bulldogs, Smith was perhaps the top underclassmen performer Sunday. He was probably the No. 2 overall defensive performer of the day behind five-star Xavier Thomas and Smith did some things as well as his IMG Academy teammate. He uses his length to bend on the edge with speed, evidenced in testing as well with a sub 4.6-second 40-yard dash, but he can do it with power as well. At just over 220 pounds, he gained ground quickly after the snap and used his hands well enough to overwhelm blockers at different points throughout the one-on-one portion of competition. 

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Avantae Williams, 2020 DB, Deland (Fla.) High School

The University of Miami (Fl) Hurricanes commitment has picked up a good amount of national offers since pulling the trigger for the in-state program with his near 6-foot frame. Despite being just under three years away from signing a letter of intent, Williams has an intriguing skill-set at defensive back. Not the flashiest one-on-one defender, he holds his own with physical play and above-average technique for a prospect many feel will grow into a true safety sooner rather than later. 

Scout's Corey Bender contributed to this report.


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