After attending several combines, watching sets of film and speaking with high school coaches across the state, we at Pack Pride are ready to release our in-state rankings. Today we begin our look at the top 50 prospects in North Carolina with #1-10.
Pack Pride breaks down the top 50 prospects in the state of North Carolina for the class of 2011.
Today we take a look at No’s 1-10.
1. LB Stephone Anthony
Anson County High School
6-2 221 4.49
Outlook: Historically, the state of North Carolina has not produced an over abundance of linebackers in any particular class. However, 2010 has been very different and Pack Pride lists as many as 12 players in the top 50 that could potentially line up at linebacker in college. Out of that group, Anthony is the best. It's not so much what he is now as what he could potentially be down the road. Anthony is just scratching the surface physically and has the upside to grow in to an all-american caliber linebacker. He boasts offers from around the nation but appears focused on the likes of Florida, Clemson, Georgia, Virginia Tech, UNC and NC State.
2. QB Christian LeMay
Outlook: With offers from coast to coast, LeMay quickly emerged as one of the most sought after prospect in the class of 2011. College caliber quarterbacks are at a premium and many schools have adopted a wait and see approach with many of them to assure they're getting a solid prospect for the next level. However, that was not the case with LeMay. While he has a good frame, LeMay is thin and will need time in college to fill out. However, his throwing mechanics are flawless and reminiscent of former Florida QB Chris Leak. He doesn't have a cannon but does have adequate arm strength. His accuracy is good for now but will need to improve as the throwing windows get progressively smaller once in college.
COMMITTED TO GEORGIA
3. LB Christian Russell
Hoke County HS
5-11 221 4.63
Offers: BAMA, UGA, UCLA, NCSU, WF, DUKE, UK
Outlook: Of all the players listed in the top 50, Russell may be the most physically impressive. He looks like a player preparing for the NFL draft instead of someone getting ready for their senior year. He may not be as athletic as some of the other linebackers in this class but he moves well and plays aggressive. Russell can cover from sideline to sideline and may be best suited for middle linebacker in college. He originally committed to UNC but backed off that claim after his coach recommended checking out a few other schools. Russell reaffirmed his pledge to the Heels recently.
COMMITTED TO UNC
4. DE Jeoffrey Pagan
6-3 268 4.66
Outlook: Pagan is another North Carolina standout with a world of potential and upside. Physically, he's big, quick and athletic. Pagan plays with a high motor and consistently makes plays. As a defensive lineman, he will need work on technique because strength alone won't get him by on the next level but that shouldn't be an issue. Although some project Pagan as a defensive end, a move to defensive tackle is certainly a possibility. With better than 20 offers under his belt, Pagan committed to Florida this year but that commitment has been shaky of late. Distance from home has reportedly come into play which means schools like Clemson, Georgia and Tennessee have come into play. For now, we'll leave him as a Gator commit.
COMMITTED TO FLORIDA (SOFT)
5. ATH Kris Frost
6-2 216 4.51
Outlook: Frost may just be the best overall athlete in the class of 2010. He has impressive versatility, standing out at outside linebacker one minute and then impressing with a tremendous pass reception the next. While somewhat difficult to say exactly, our feeling is he may be better suited for defense although Frost certainly has the talent to excel on either side of the ball. He currently holds offers from UNC, Auburn, Georgia Tech, LSU, Michigan, Maryland and Virginia Tech among others. Frost says he is currently favoring LSU, Auburn, Michigan, California and UNC.
6. WR Nigel King
Oak Ridge Prep
6-2 190 4.7
Offers: LSU, UNC, NCSU, LOU, ECU...
Outlook: Pack Pride probably has King rated somewhat higher than others but if you judge him solely on football potential, he's as good at his position as just about anyone in the state. He can be the solid, go-to guy on offense but also has the knack for making the impossible catch look easy. Athletically, he is off the charts. His recruiting and perception has taken a hit due to off the field questions but he still landed early offers from Maryland, UNC, NC State, LSU, Louisville and East Carolina among others. To the surprise of many, he committed to Maryland earlier this year and the Terps all but promised he could start as a freshman in their three wide receiver set.
COMMITTED TO MARYLAND
7. DL Shaun Underwood
Fuquay-Varina High School
6-0 318 4.97
Offers: PSU, SCAR, NCSU, WF, DUKE, ECU...
Outlook: There aren't many defensive tackles in the top 50 listing but Underwood is one of the best. He has the classic nose guard build and looks like a fire hydrant on the field. Underwood shocked many who witnessed him run a sub 5.0-second 40-yard dash earlier this year, all while weighing in just under 320 pounds. He has the ability to clog running lanes and occupy offensive linemen which will be his strongest suit in college. Underwood landed offers from NC State, UNC, East Carolina, Duke and Penn State among others but selected the Heels earlier this month.
COMMITTED TO UNC
8. LB/DE Norkeithus Otis
Outlook: Otis was somewhat of an unknown on the recruiting trail this year because he was never scouted at a camp or combine setting. However, watching his film there's no question Otis is a big time talent. He would probably be best suited as a standup defensive end in a 3-4 alignment because of his ability to explode off the line of scrimmage and make plays. Otis shows tremendous redirection and seemingly sheds blockers with ease. He currently holds offers from NC State, UNC, Tennessee, Virginia, Georgia Tech, Florida and Duke among others
9. TE Drew Owens
Ardrey Kell High School
Outlook: Physically, Owens appears college ready right now. He has a long frame and does a good job of using that size to his advantage. Owens is an all around tight end prospect. He is a very reliable receiver and seems to have a knack for finding open spaces in the defense. Fundamentally, he has a tendency to catch the ball with his body which should be an easy fix in college. Owens is also very impressive in run blocking and does a very good job of getting his pads under the defender. He holds offers from NC State, Clemson, South Carolina, UNC, East Carolina, Maryland and Tennessee to name several. He lists a top five that includes NC State, Clemson, South Carolina, UNC and Arkansas.
10. ATH Matthias Farley
6-1 185 4.4
Offers: UNC, NCSU, MD, UCLA, WISC, ILL, DUKE...
Outlook: Farley didn't start playing football until his sophomore year in high school but he more than made up for lost time in 2009. Because he's still learning the game, Farley will bring a ton of upside and potential to the collegiate level. First and foremost, Farley is football fast. He blows by defenders in high school and his running style appears effortless with that forward lean you love to see in a ball carrier. Farley displays great body control but it's apparent he'll need to learn an expanded assortment of routes if he hopes to stay on offense in college. Farley committed to Notre Dame in April over offers from NC State, Duke, Illinois and Maryland among others. He may begin his career at corner for the Irish.