I usually do not cover middle school events, neither does Scout. Since this camp was the day before the high school camp and I was in town, I wanted the opportunity to see the next generation in action. If you are not featured in this write-up, fret not, there is a lot of time. As a general caveat, we are still in the business of covering high school players and their recruits, but I wanted to give these few kids a little bit of recognition for a job well done.
8th Grade MVPs (chosen by camp staff)
- From Michigan, wide receiver Justin Gabriel, who will attend Walled Lake Western, is a skilled route-runner who is used to competing with older players, so a higher level of competition was not foreign to him. He is a competitive kid with good positional skills already for being so young.
- Defensive back Joseph Baka from Canada could have passed for a high school junior. He has great size already, but he was not just big, he had cover skills to go with it. This is a name recruiting fans should be hearing a lot about in the future.
- Caden Propst, a defensive lineman from Missouri who will attend Fort Zumwalt North, was quick, aggressive and earned this MVP honor after the camp coaches saw him regular win his 1-1 reps.
7th Grade MVPs (chosen by camp staff)
- The two MVPs will play in the inaugural Under Armour Youth Game in January of 2019. They were about as opposite as you could be. Offensive lineman Kiyaunta Goodwin is already 6-foot-5, 342 pounds and the Louisville native can move around for a kid of that size. By comparison, Missouri-based defensive back Aidan McLean is not a big kid, but his quickness and instincts drew praise from the coaches including one Mr. Deion Sanders.
6th Grade MVP (chosen by camp staff)
- Wide receiver Ryan Boyd, another Missouri kid, was chosen by the staff as MVP after they saw his competitive spirit at a young age and also his ability to run routes and catch the football.
- East St. Louis (Ill.) always has great talent and they are in good hands for the future as quarterback Tyler Macon has a strong arm and throws a nice ball already. Wide receiver Keontrez Lewis has the size and ability to be a great target for Macon and fall in line with a long lineage of great ESL skill players.
- Like wise, St. Louis (Mo.) Trinity Catholic has had a lot of talent recently and they had two players in wide receiver Demetrius Cannon and defensive back Tyler Hibbler who look like they will have a chance to very good high school players and potentially be recruited prospects.
- The quarterback position was very strong. In addition to Macon, we saw several who impressed: Maddox Tavernier (Indiana), Connor Easthope (Michigan), Shedeur Sanders (Texas), Te'Sean Smoot (Ohio) and Christian Veilleux (Canada) all looked like kids we will hear a lot more from come high school. Those kids are all 8th graders, Jordan Moore, a 7th grader from Michigan had a good day for a young guy.
- Giovanni Thomas from Ohio was a skill player who was touted as a quarterback but has the size and strength to project to other positions. He played running back at the camp. Jake DeJong, an 8th grader from Michigan and Elijah Brown, a 7th grader from Ohio were two other skill guys whose size and potential stood out.