We've been doing a lot of recruiting updates on the Ohio players so far, and many of them are guys you had heard about before. While researching for Ohio's Future Stars magazine though, we have found many players who we haven't heard much about yet but should definitely be followed this year. Many of these guys will be ranked between 51-100 in Duane Long's rankings, and some might not even be in the top 100. But we wanted to let you in on some of the state's sleepers and unknown stars, so here is a look at a few (remember, these are just a few of the many standouts across the state).
Let's start in Dover, where you will find huge OL Chauncey Incarnato (pronounced In-car-nay-toe). Chauncey's name is not unknown anymore as chances are you have seen a few Web updates on him, but he's one whose stock is on the rise. Dover head coach Dan Ifft had a lot of great things to say about him; as a matter of fact, his description of Chauncey is exactly what you want to hear when finding out about an offensive lineman. He's big, very strong, flexible, and runs well. He also had great things to say about Chauncey off the field. OSU has a solid interest, and schools like Syracuse and Alabama have sent mail as well. There's also another OL at Dover who is getting interest from MAC schools, Shawn Donaldson (6-4, 265, 5.4).
From there, we're going to go up to Mentor, where the Cardinals will have a talented group of seniors this year. You may have heard about QB Thom Abbott, who threw for 2700 yards last year and is one of Northeast Ohio's top returning QBs. Coach Steve Trivisonno at Mentor said Abbott gives the team a Brett Favre-type presence and is a complete player. He was at OSU junior day, as was LB Chad Mayse and DB Scott Goodwin. Mayse is the player Coach Trivisonno raved about, saying he was definitely a big-timer and should get some early offers. Michigan State is also a school that is showing heavy interest in Chad, and he has family connections up there as well. Goodwin (6-3, 195, 4.5) is a guy who Trivisonno thinks could be a real nice safety prospect as he shows excellent coverage abilities and great speed and jumping ability. Others to watch in Mentor are 6-2, 190 pound WR Greg Godic, 6-2, 185 pound safety Tony Martucci, 6-0, 180 pound safety/punter Angelo DiFranco, 6-0, 225 pound MLB Paul Burger (also an excellent wrestler), and a sleeper DE in 6-5, 225 pound Keith Lawrence.
Jumping over to the west side of Cleveland, there are many prospects to talk about. At Lorain Southview, Coach Tony Shoulders has a couple of good ones in CB Marqual Miller and LB Brian Joyner. Miller had a fantastic sophomore season but struggled a bit during his junior season. He will be looking to have a big senior season since he is determined to play Division I ball. Joyner is a guy who Coach Shoulders seemed very high on. Joyner is about 6-1, 225, 4.6, and has fine physical skills and also knows the game very well. Both of these players should get a lot of looks this year. Coach Shoulders also gave the latest on excellent RB Jeff Hughes, who is working towards qualifying. Akron has surfaced as a possibility for him.
Lakewood St. Edward also has some good senior talent as we talked with Coach John Gibbons about defensive lineman Ryan Marando, DB/RB Damien Pride, and others. Marando has LB size right now at 6-3, 215-220, but he is a fine pass rusher and a very good athlete. He's also got good strength. Virginia has shown quite a bit of interest, and he checked out a game there. Pride had a fine year at TB last year, but Coach Gibbons thinks his stock could really rise as a corner. He also talked about three other potential D-I players in OL Nick Lembach, FB Mike Grier, and WR/FS/KR Haruki Nakamura, but the player he raved about the most was junior-to-be OL Alex Boone (6-8, 280), who Coach Gibbons said should be able to play anywhere in the country and is already getting plenty of interest (OSU is one of the many schools who has shown interest).
Also in the Cleveland area, Benedictine has some fine players to watch. Many of you already know about TB Ray Williams, who put up monstrous numbers last year. Coach Art Bortnick said there are more players to watch though, particularly LB/TE Joe Schaefer, DE/TE Bill Brody, and K Sam Koyl. Schaefer has good size (6-5, 215, 4.8) and is getting Big Ten and MAC interest. Brody has similar size, runs a 4.7 and had great numbers in 2002 as he racked up 15 1/2 sacks and 23 hurries. Koyl is a smaller guy at 5-7, 160, but he has shown 50-yard range and Coach Bortnick thinks he could be the best kicker in the area.
We also talked about quite a few intriguing prospects with Coach William Powers at Bedford Chanel. Two names you'll want to remember are Anton Veasley and Antonio Steele. Veasley (6-3, 215, 4.5) is a WR/LB who they call "the man-child." He was hurt much of last year, but he has rebounded and should be set for a big season in 2003. Wisconsin is very interested in him as they have already been in to check out one of his basketball games, and Virginia is another school interested. Michigan State also likes him. Steele (6-2, 185, 4.5) is the brother of Dallas Cowboys LB Markus Steele, and he is showing some big potential. He had 15 sacks last year at LB but projects as a safety. Virginia is also in on this player, and brother Markus has been trying to set him up to camp out at USC. Another player to watch here is DB Doug Alford, who has good numbers both on the field and in the classroom.
Moving east from there, two real interesting players can be found at Youngstown Liberty. One is LB DeShawn Crenshaw, who is the brother of ex-PSU player Sam Crenshaw. He had to learn the LB position last year but has fine ability and is definitely one to watch. He does