Scouting Report: Emerald City Kickoff Classic

With five games in one day at Qwest Field in Seattle, the two "main events" were the late games of the Emerald City Kickoff Classic. Scout.com was there for all of the action, and here is the scouting report on the top prospects on Kennedy, Kentwood and Central Kitsap from Washington and Honolulu (Hawaii) Punahou, including a look at the top strongside linebacker in the country, Manti Te'o...

Kennedy
QB/CB Nolan Washington. Washington struggled to get things going in the passing game for the Lancers, though he did make a couple of plays. Defensively, he was playing cornerback, but didn't make a lot of plays, primarily because of Kentwood's running game. Still, he would show flashes of athleticism at both positions. At 5-9, 170, Washington's future is at cornerback.

LB D'Mario Carter Carter was the standout for the Lancers defense, getting in on numerous tackles and playing actively in pursuit. At only 6-0, 215, Carter likely projects as a safety in college, but he played well in space, and moved good sideline to sideline. He's added a lot of weight since we saw him in Las Vegas at the Badger/New Level tournament and could end up as a weakside linebacker if he continues to bulk up.

RB Tre Watson. Watson carried, literally, the Lancers offense, going over 100 yards in the season opener. Watson has good burst, and showed it on his 75-yard touchdown. We like his size and speed, but think cornerback is where he ends up at the next level.

Kentwood
C Hunter Blackmore. Blackmore stands as our top center prospect in the West, and he's one of the best pure centers around. He's quick off the ball, gets to the second level quickly and plays with a lot of nasty. He did a great job opening holes for Darrius Coleman and played well on the defensive side of the ball. But we think Blackmore's a definitely D-I center.

RB Darius Coleman.. Coleman replaced one of Kentwood's best players ever, Washington signee Demetrius Bronson and his debut went about as well as he could have expected, running for three touchdown for the Conks. Coleman will need to have a big senior season to open up more eyes, but he's on his way. He's got good speed and is a tough runner.

Central Kitsap
WR/TE Christian Wesley. Just a junior, Wesley had the highlight for Central Kitsap, scoring on a 64-yard touchdown reception. The 6-5, 215-pounder looks like he would have some decent speed at tight end and being a junior, he's got some time to beef up some. He was more than willing to block some DB's, so with more size, he's got potential at tight end. He lacks the top-end speed for a wideout but his good hands and playmaking ability make him an intriguing prospect.

Punahou
RB Dalton Hilliard. Hilliard finished with 10 carries for 58 yards with a touchdown and five catches for 64 yards with a touchdown. He showed that he really is a great all-around high school back that can translate it to the next level. Hilliard has great burst and when he lined up a fullback, and ran a few dives, he was quick through the line. He had a good spin move and threw a couple of stiff arms as well that were pretty effective and as the tape will show, had a few plays where he makes more than one guy miss. If nothing was there, he wasn't afraid to lower his shoulder and get what was available to him. Most impressive was his ability and desire to both run and pass block. Granted, Hilliard was bigger than most, but he wasn't afraid to get in there and hit somebody. He was able to push piles for additional yardage when he got stacked up, didn't drop a ball, and made himself available on his touchdown catch when the quarterback was in trouble. The only negative was his fumble, in which he scooped up and ran for another 12 yards anyhow.

QB/DE Kimo Makaula. With teammate, and starting quarterback Cayman Shutter sidelined with a shoulder injury, Makaula handled the passing duties for Punahou, and left a big mark on the game. Because he stayed at quarterback, the Hawaii-commit didn't play defense at all. And he was absolutely the star of the game, going 19-for-24 for 315 yards and three touchdowns to one pick. First, the bad. One, on the first drive on third down, he tried to force a 20 yard throw to his receiver in the end zone into triple coverage that was almost picked, but it was dropped. Later, he floated a ball into the end zone and that pick too was dropped. Then on the next play, there was a receiver screen which he threw two yards upfield to a defender for a pick. Besides that, Shutter, a New Mexico commit, must be lights up, because Makaula made plays all night long.

He had decent enough zip on his passes, and he showed great touch on a couple of throws. He made a 33-yard throw over two defenders to a diving receiver for a catch. On another one, he threw in stride to his receiver for a 70-yard touchdown to go up 28-6. His poise and ability to buy time in the pocket was truly impressive. Two times he escaped pressure to throw for touchdown. The first one allowed Punahou to go up 21-6, escaping pressure long enough to just flip the ball to Hilliard as he was getting sacked and Hilliard did the rest and ran for the touchdown. The second was just an absolutely wow play, to go up 35-6 on a 27-yard touchdown pass. He stepped up in the pocket, avoided two rushers and threw a ball to the back of the end zone that his receiver came down with. His ability all night to create in the pocket was impressive really.

WR Roby Toma. Toma was the main target for Makaula, and he was the guy who caught the 74-yard pass from Makaula. Toma finished with 8 catches and 177 yards and constantly got behind the CK secondary. He's not the biggest, at about 5-9, 165, but is the kind of receiver the hometown Warriors have been winning with.

LB Manti Te'o. The nation's premier strongside linebacker showed why offenses fear him and his defense features him. In just three quarters of work, Te'o had 12 tackles by our count, two passes defensed, one that maybe could have been caught, and another in his chest that should have been caught for a pick six. He was flying around everywhere on the field, running across field to make the tackles as it was obvious Kitsap was trying to avoid him at the beginning. Te'o would hit piles and just drive them back or lay them out all together. Most of his coverage seemed to be in zone, which he seemed to pick up guys in his zone pretty well On one play, he peeled off his zone to make a nice tackle on his receiver and on another, he had a nice read on a running back screen and disrupted the play.

For the most part, Te'o was able to shake his block when blockers engaged him and he was able to keep them at bay and throw them off when the ball carrier was coming. On kickoff coverage, he would hang back and get a feel for where the returner was going and then sprint full speed at him, and the pile that was about to be created, and just try to light things up, one time just hammering the returner. The only negative was when he missed one tackle where he lowered his shoulder on a guy and didn't wrap up and the guy bounced off him, and on the touchdown run that cut the lead to 35-13, he got locked up by one blocker as the runner ran by him. But you're picking nits because Te'o was just an absolute force and did nothing but prove he's the best SLB in the country. He's definitely an emotional leader on the team and set the tone for the defense.

Brandon Casey from EvergreenStatePreps.com contributed to the scouting report


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