Pre Spring: DT

Note, this is only a partial list since my list will continue to grow throughout the spring and summer as I attend more camps and combines and get a chance to watch more of the top players.

Kareem Crowell, 6-3, 275, Tallahassee (Godby) -- If you took a trip through the entire Panhandle region of the state, you'd have a hard time finding a defensive lineman the caliber of Crowell. After having played defensive end as a sophomore, he moved inside and bulked up to about 270 pounds last season. His quickness and non-stop motor allowed him to make a lot of plays. He brings a tremendous amount of athletic ability to the position and has a chance to be a 290+ pound, athletic defensive tackle at the next level.

Charles Deas, 6-4, 315, Ft. Lauderdale (Dillard) -- A dominating presence in the middle of Dillard's defense, Deas was unblockable as a junior last season. He combines tremendous size, strength, and quickness to destroy opposing offensive linemen. He's the type of player who likes to get into the heads of his opponents and he's just a kid who's fun to watch on the field. He has some work to do academically and is considering transferring from Dillard for his senior season but that remains a question mark at this point. On the field, he's a big time football player.

Kendrick Ellis, 6-4, 310, Greenacres (Leonard) -- The last truly dominating defensive tackle prospect to come out of Palm Beach County was Vince Wilfork five years ago. That's going to change this season as Ellis was on top of his game as a junior last season. He'll soon be a rare four year starter and has really developed into one of the state's top players at that position. He was a first team All-County pick as a junior, despite facing double and triple teams on nearly every play. He already has a qualifying SAT score so he should be solid academically.

Bryant Miller, 6-3, 250, Miami Central -- Dade County is loaded with quality defensive linemen every year and next season will be no different. The head of the class will be Central's Bryant Miller. Although he only played in four games as a junior because of injuries and wasn't a full-time starter in 03, Miller showed flashes of being a big time player. He plays with tremendous quickness and that's the first thing you look for in a defensive line prospect. He plays with his head up and his hands out in front and he goes laterally very well. He looks a lot like Bryan Pata at that age. He'll also be one of the top shot put and discus throwers in Florida this spring. If he can stay healthy for his entire senior season, forget about trying to block this kid. He'll show up on most national recruiting radar screens by the end of spring.

Reggie Odom, 6-1, 285, DeLand -- While everyone at DeLand High is talking about NBA-bound small forward Keith Brumbaugh, Odom is quietly becoming one of the state's top players at his position. He was everywhere as a junior last season and because of his strength and ability to play with good leverage, he's able to win most of the battles inside. He's a solid student with a 3.0+ gpa and will be the school's most heavily recruited defensive lineman since Roy Williams back in the late 90s.

Leslie Stirrups, 6-4, 305, Tampa (Hillsborough) -- After I saw Stirrups dominate a game like few are capable of this past season, I asked his coach what he thought of him. His response? Stirrups is as good as any player he's coached in over 30 years. He's got everything you look for in a defensive tackle prospect -- he's very quick, he's relentless, he's instinctive, and he makes a lot of plays from the middle of the defense. He's over 300 pounds but plays on his feet like he's 250. He's a classic two-gap player who has a chance to be a really good defensive tackle at the college level. He's the school's best DL prospect in several years and that includes former Hurricane and current 49er Andrew Williams.

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