The University of South Florida held its annual 7 on 7 Sling & Shoot Tournament and big man camp this weekend and with 52 teams from all over the state of Florida, there was plenty of talent and prospects on the USF campus all weekend long.
With 52 teams in attendance they were spread out between the Fowler fields and the new fields on Juniper, with the Big man camp on the Bulls practice fields. All teams played the cross pool seeding on Saturday and Sunday morning and began the single elimination tournament. A new twist to the camp was once they got down to the sweet sixteen they moved the tourney to the Bulls new practice fields, so all the athletes in attendance got a chance for a close up look at the Bulls new digs.
This was the fourth Sling and shoot/Big man camp under coach Holtz and considering it was the largest turnout yet for the annual event and how many kids were on campus, everything was well organized and went very smoothly from start to finish.
By Sunday evening the second USF Sling & Shoot 7-on-7 tournament of the summer came to a close when Pasco defeated Gaither High 27-12 to win the coveted Sling and Shoot title, and I have to give a shout out to all the teams that participated and to those who made the sweet sixteen, Armwood, Jupiter, Plant, Blake, Gaither, Palm Beach Central, Jefferson, Eastlake, Dwyer, Pasco, Tarpon Springs, Jesuit, Wayne County, Land O Lakes and Countryside, with a little extra notice to Gaither and to Pasco for of course to winning the tourney.
Who wins the tourney is great but all the good stuff has to deal with the athletes that participated. With that in mind here's my player notebook and who stood out during the weekend.
Player Notebook: Offense
With 53 teams there were plenty of quarterbacks to look at and here's who caught my eye through the weekend.
Jupiter's Tyler Cameron was one of the better signal callers at the tourney and even though a 7on7 format isn't to his team's strength, displayed good arm strength and that he can make the throws he needed to, and since the QB's couldn't run, showed he could move the chains with his arm and not his legs, which is a big part of his game. Cameron led his team to the sweet sixteen before losing to Armwood on a somewhat controversial interception. With all his offers Cameron lists USF with LSU, Wake Forest, UCLA, Purdue, and Illinois as his top choices.
I liked what I saw out of quarterback Greyson Lambert from Wayne County (GA), who led his team to the sweet sixteen before bowing out to Jesuit. Lambert is a big QB at 6-foot-5, 210 pounds, and the 4-star prospect has offers from some of the top programs in the southeast.
After watching Countryside's Gray Crow, a UM commit, I thought he looked markedly improved from when I saw him last season. The team struggled the first day going 1-5, but turned it on in match play. However I also remember him playing well at 7on7's last year as well.
I thought Jesuit's Tommy Eveld continues to show improvement every time I see him play and was making throws all weekend long and I think he'll get better once the season begins and he gets more experience. The younger Eveld still doesn't have offers but that has to do with minimal game film on the rising senior, but they will come down the road that's for sure.
I have to give a big shout out to Pasco's Jacob Guy, who played well all weekend long and led his team to the win the championship.
Other 2012 QB's that played well were Tarpon Springs Louis Pappas, who led his team to the sweet sixteen and Carrollwood Day's Deuce Gruden, who for a little QB threw the ball well and showed some nice touch while making throws.
A look ahead
Armwood's Darryl Richardson, a rising junior is another player that has looked better every time I've seen him since the beginning of the spring. Richardson has elite size (6-5, 215,) good arm strength and was making throws all weekend leading the Hawks to the final four he did struggle a few times but he's still learning. He has early offers from USF, Ohio State, and Tennessee.
After Eastlake QB Pete Dinovo caught my eye at the SuperBull last month, I was very impressed with the 2013 QB from Tarpon Springs during the Sling & Shoot. He was fantastic all weekend long, not losing a game all weekend going 10-0 until losing to Pasco in the triple overtime in the finals when Pasco went for the 2 pt and got it. As far as I know he didn't throw one interception through 11 games either. Pete's one to keep an eye on for 2013.
One player that came out of nowhere for me was Gaither's Alex McGough, who was solid all weekend and shocked a stacked Armwood defense to lead his team to the finals and he's only going to be a sophomore. McGough, who is listed at 6-foot-2, 150 pounds transferred from Wesley Chapel so I'd expect big things from him in the future.
Wharton's rising sophomore QB Chase Litton started off slow during the weekend and even though he bounced back wasn't as impressive as the last sling & shoot.
Wide Receiver -With 52 teams in attendance, there were 100's of receivers at the tourney and here's who stood out throughout the weekend.
Jesuit's Travis Johnson was one of the top receivers at the event and was making big catches from Tommy Eveld all weekend. The 2013 6-foot-4,4, 210 pound receiver used his frame to make plenty of great grabs and used his frame to out muscle defensive backs. He already holds a long list of offers including one from USF.
Palm Beach Central WR Angelo Jean Louis, a UM commit, was a good looking receiver prospect. At 6-foot, 185 pounds has size, speed and is a physical receiver that showed that he was explosive, could jump and make big plays.
Armwood's WR Javonte Sneed, caught a lot of people's attention at the last sling and shoot and was impressive again this past weekend. He ran nice routes, showed good speed and would go up and catch the ball using nothing but his hands. At 5'11, 175 pounds he has a good build and uses it well and has enough speed and moves to get it done.
Plant senior Austin Aikens was their go-to-guy all weekend and caught almost everything thrown his way. Aikens ran solid routes and showed very good hands as he made big play after big play for Plant.
Land o Lakes TE Kent Taylor came from FNL to compete and even though he made some good plays on Saturday looked a bit gassed by Sunday and wasn't as involved in the offense as I'm used to seeing.
Spoto WR Geronimo Allison caught my attention early and kept it. At 6-3, 175 pounds he's a big lanky receiver and showed great ball skills, coordination, and was very tough for DB's to contain, especially when they through the jump ball to him in the end zone similar to how Jefferson used USF freshman Andre Davis.
Jefferson has a good trio of receivers in Adrian Jenkins, Aaron Jenkins and Charles Booth, Adrian had the best weekend from what I saw, using his big frame to go up and make the catch. Booth is shifty, just on the small side. Aaron (2013) gets better each time I've seen him, and will be a target next year.
Gaither's Carlo Perrello, a 5'11, 175 pound senior WR caught almost everything thrown his way and came up big all weekend long helping Gaither get to the finals.
Delray Village Academy's senior WR Devonte Robinson (West Virginia commit) had good size and looked quick and showed some explosiveness while making plays.
Pasco senior Trey Dudley-Giles, a 5'10 170 pound athlete was making a lot of plays while lining up all over the field.
A look ahead
Pasco athlete Janarion Grant had a break out weekend, the 5-foot-9, 163-pound rising junior starred on offense and defense. He showed speed, moves, great leaping ability and hands like glue. He made play after play and in the championship game proved to be too much with two touchdown grabs.
Another Armwood prospect that showed up all weekend was Alvin Bailey, a 2013 receiver that's quickness and speed are tough for defenders to handle. Not to mention he has good hands and makes the tough catches look easy.
Gaither's Shug Oyegunle, a rising junior who was listed as the team's quarterback played wide receiver most of the time that I saw and the 5-10, 175 pound athlete was a big part of the offense. Apparently he can play QB, but showed he's athletic, has speed and can make cuts in the open field to be a game changer at receiver.
Countryside wide receiver Marrieo Taylor was an impressive looking prospect. At 5-foot-10, 170 pound s, he's a shifty playmaker from the slot position and showed playmaking ability while hauling in plenty of deep balls for scores.
Eastlake's Artavis Scott is only a rising sophomore and is a star in the making. The 5-11, 160-pound receiver has speed, hands and oozes of big play ability and was huge all weekend long for Eastlake. He'll be top prospect for 2014.
Dwyer had two youngsters that caught my attention, Johnny Dixon, a 5'10, 180 pound 2013 WR/DB, and Clint Stevens, a 5'9, 155 pound 2014 WR. Both made a lot of plays all weekend long and are two to keep an eye on.
The top running back at the tourney was Armwood's Matt Jones, who's committed to the Gators. The big back didn't actually play in the 7on7 and was just there to support his team, but was the best looking back on the fields.,p>Alonso's Brandon Holloway, a 5-foot-8, 160-pounder was one of the fastest players out there, he's small, but can fly all over the field and make things happen with the ball.
Plant's Wesley Bullock was an offensive weapon for the panthers all weekend. He's on the small side, standing around 5'5, 155 pounds, but showed speed and elusiveness.
Western running back Fabian Moreau, a 6'0, 180 pound running back/defensive back was a pretty good looking back that made plays for Western.
A look ahead
Admiral Farragut's Cortavious Givens, a 5'11, 200 pound running back is an impressive looking prospect. He was making plays and showed he had good hands catching short passes as well as showing the speed to go deep as well, and I saw him make a 40-yard TD catch. Givens who's teammate of USF commit Rayshawn Jenkins also lined up at linebacker and made several interceptions and defensive plays out there.