We will both have more in-depth reports, videos and photos from the trip, but here are a few notes from the day.
Their big named guy is DerJuan Gambrell, who told us today that is only a matter of time before he commits to Ohio State. Gambrell looked to be about right at his listed 6'2, 180-lbs. We put on the tape and saw a rangy safety with the speed and "hurdler's hips" to project to cornerback, which is where the Buckeyes want to start him. He's a kid who was under the radar. Ohio State got him to camp, liked him at camp and he stayed hidden and it looks like the Scarlet and Grey are getting a great athlete. Film on him tomorrow.
The tape kept going though and there was a #17 flying down the field and making plays. That was Damond Powell, a 5'11, 165-lb junior, who has been a varsity basketball starter since his freshman year and continues to be one of the top hoopers in the area. He knows his next level ticket may come on the gridiron and after seeing him on film, I think he can definitely play at the FBS level.
There aren't just skill guys at Rogers though, as the Rams also have a 6'7, 315-lb offensive tackle named Felix Fowler. We have yet to see film on him, but this junior definitely has the size to play at the next level.
Toledo St. Johns Jesuit
Their premier player, two-way lineman Jack Miller, is being recruited on both sides of the ball, but head coach Doug Pearson says more schools are saying defense. He currently holds a Toledo offer, but Pearson says a couple others, like Cincinnati, are close to joining the list.
Wide receiver Cheatam Norrils is another one with a Rocket offer. The 5'11, 175-lb basketball standout also has a Bowling Green offer for both sports and is leaning more towards hoops, but is a D1/FBS caliber wideout as well.
One 2011 sleeper here is junior running back Nate White. The 6'0, 185-lb White had a strong junior season and has already visited Bowling Green and Michigan.
The Titans always have talent coming up the pipe and the youngsters to keep an eye on in the 2012 class are 6'6, 300-lb tackle Troy Favorite, 6'4, 235-lb tight end Zach Steinmetz, and Brandon Smith, who averaged over 40 yards a punt last season.
Highly sought defensive tackle Kevin Williams gave a great interview which will be posted tomorrow. Nebraska, Michigan and Michigan State seem to be the three in contention right now, but several schools, including Ohio State, Notre Dame, and Alabama, could offer down the line. He wants to make a decision before summer. He's a very smart kid who was actually on his way to pre-Calc when we talked to him and he wants to pursue engineering. Coach Vince Marrow let us watch the tape of him and I saw a kid who was athletic enough to play tight end as well as defensive tackle. He was fundamentally sound, played with great leverage and used his hands well. A lot of the schools recruiting him use a 3-4 or 3-3-5, but I think Williams can play as a one-gap or two-gap lineman.
He has some teammates that can play too. While watching his tape, a #15 kept flashing, which turned out to be Glandoy Hill, a 6'3, 185-lb wide receiver/safety, who Marrow believes is a big time prospect. It was tough to argue as he closed fast, liked contact and made some plays at wide receiver. He left me wanting to see more.
Sophomore (2012) quarterback Leroy Alexander is a basketball player as well who stands about 6'1 and Marrow says he is on his way to being a highly recruited player himself.
We checked in with Ohio State commitment Ken Hayes, who had a giant stack of mail in his hands. He's firmly committed to Ohio State, but he says he still likes to look at the letters. He actually has six offers, some of them coming after his early commitment to the Buckeyes.
His sophomore counterpart Chris Wormley was the most physically imposing player we saw all day. He is a chisled 6'5, 255-lb kid who told us Indiana has already verbally offered. Ohio State is also recruiting him hard, but he says he grew up following Michigan.
The 2011 class for the Panthers also offers 6'4, 250-lb guard Chris Reaper, who head coach Joe Palka believes will pick up some offers this summer. They also have several 2012 prospects that we will cover in future columns.
We stopped and saw Allen Gant, a sophomore who many feel will be one of the top prospects in the state in the 2012 class. He is a solid 6'1, 205-lb kid who looks like he'll grow into a strong safety. We have not seem film yet, but he passed the eye test. Ohio State and Michigan, where his father played, are the two schools he mentioned. He visited Columbus for the USC game and says it was a great experience and then came to Ann Arbor for their game against the Buckeyes at the end of last year.
We saw many other kids and picked up loads of film on our trip. We will have more on all these Toledo area kids in the coming days.
A special thanks to all the head coaches, players and school administration for cooperating with us today.