Talent overflows at TCU camp

TCU hosted two camps on Friday and by the end of the day five prospects had offers from the Horned Frogs.

Over the course of Coach Gary Patterson's career, the talent level of his TCU program has risen higher and higher each year. With every 11 or 12 win season comes another highly touted recruiting class. These days however, the talent that participates at TCU camps is on a whole different level. Friday's camp saw the most talented group of campers to ever participate on TCU's campus and the Frogs are hoping to parlay that into multiple commitments for their 2013 class.

The talent didn't stop with the 2013 prospects however. 2014 and even a select few 2015 prospects put on dazzling shows of athleticism and fierce competition. Watching some of the region's top talent battle it out for a coveted scholarship offer was a treat to watch and made this camp one that won't soon be forgotten.

By the end of the day, five prospects had received offers from the Horned Frogs. Among those prospects who received offers were three 2014 prospects and two 2013 prospects.

In the morning session, the linemen had the first crack at making an impression on the TCU staff. It was one of the most stacked field of competitors ever at a TCU camp. One of the top players in attendance was 2014 star Demetrius Knox. The big lineman from Ft. Worth All Saints turned in an impressive performance and earned a scholarship in the process. He also holds offers from Alabama, Michigan, Ohio State among many others.

Other top performers in the morning session were Alex Mayes(6'6" 285) and Connor Mayes(6'5" 320) from Van Alstyne, Nicholas Thurmon from Lake Highlands, Jesse Robinson(6'6" 280) from L.D. Bell, Ryan Messer(6'3" 270) from Nolan Catholic and Gaius Vaenuku(6'4" 245) from Euless Trinity. Last but not least, Andrew Billings(6'1" 305) dazzled onlookers with his speed and power, showing why he is one of the most sought after linemen in the country. Coming in at nearly 6'1" and over 300 pounds, the Waco high school product turned in an impressive 5.18 40 yard dash.

Out of the group mentioned above, Trinity's Vaenuku was the one the impressed the coaches enough to earn on offer to TCU on the afternoon. The legit 6'4" 245 pound defensive end prospect was impressive in every drill showing a motor that made everyone take notice.

Robinson and Alex Mayes were among the players that coaches told should be hearing something from them in the next few weeks in regards to their status.

In the afternoon session, some of the top athletes in the state of Texas were on display and if you blinked, you likely missed it. The speed that was exhibited was like nothing I had ever seen at a TCU camp and a lucky few participants earned offers on the day.

Two players had originally planned to stay in the comfort of their homes on Friday, but a late change of plans had them competing in Ft. Worth and as a result both of them landed offers. That distinction belonged to West Mesquite defensive backs Will Earley and Dylan Sumner-Gardner.

Earley tipped the scales at 6'1" and 185 pounds and ran one of the fastest forties on the day with a 4.47. The athletic corner put on quite a show for everyone to see and came away with an offer for his hard work.

It didn't take long for coaches to take notice in Sumner-Gardner who barely broke a sweat during safety drills. Regarded as one of the top defensive backs from the 2014 class, there weren't many receivers who got behind the talented safety on the day. At 6-foot, 190, he was also one of the more physically impressive safeties on the day.

The same can be said for another 2014 prospect, Hebron safety Jamal Adams. At 6-foot-1, 185-pounds, like Sumner-Gardner, it didn't take long for Adams to get the coach's attention, more particularly head coach Gary Patterson. Adams displayed an excellent knack to break on the ball and had several pass breakups on the day.

The talent pool was deep and as Coach Patterson spoke to the group at the conclusion of the camp, he said there were "20-25" offerable players that he saw participate on the day. Included in that group were 2013, 2014 and 2015 prospects. He went on to say that he had never seen that much skill at a TCU camp since he came to Ft. Worth in 1998.

Here's a list of other top performers on the day. Some already held offers and some are on the verge of breaking out.

2013 Ath Cameron Echols-Luper (5'11" 185) Auburn HS, Auburn, AL – offer

To simply put it, Echols-Luper couldn't be covered during one-on-one drills as he routinely beat whatever defender that lined up across from him. Whether it was beating a corner on a deep or short route, Echols-Luper made it look effortless. Without a doubt he is a Jeremy Kerley starter kit. Echols-Luper said his visit to TCU put them even higher on his list and he plans to make another visit over the summer.

2013 QB Austin Robinson (6'3" 217) Bellaire Episcopal Bellaire, TX

Robinson was definitely one of the top quarterbacks in attendance, in fact the coaches held him after the camp to watch him throw more passes. Let's put it this way, when Echols-Luper was in line during one-on-one's, the coaches made sure Robinson was the quarterback throwing to him. He displayed an accurate arm and stronger than what he's given credit for. He's also fleet footed, while he didn't run his fastest forty, he did run a 4.6.

2014 QB Colby Moore (6'1" 190) Springtown HS Springtown, TX

Moore was another quarterback who impressed on Friday. Moore carried over his strong performance from the Texas A&M camp on Thursday where we was mentioned as a top performer. Moore definitely had one of the most accurate arms at the camp and connected on several deep passes during one-on-ones. Moore also displayed good feet which was evident from his 4.65 forty and 4.04 pro shuttle.

2013 WR Robbie Rhodes(6'1" 185) Southwest HS Ft. Worth, TX – offer

There's a reason Rhodes is one of the top 10 receivers in the country, and he showed it on Friday. When it comes to creating separation on route running, there may not be a better receiver at creating space. Rhodes also displayed excellent and reliable hands on the day. He didn't blister the track in the forty, but is also didn't look like he was running as fast as he could go. However, when it came to running routes and beating defenders, Rhodes definitely looked like the fastest receiver (along with Luper-Echols) on the day.

2013 LB Xavier Phillips (6-2, 220) FW All Saints

Phillips is becoming one of the most talked about recruits in the state in recent weeks. He added another offer Friday afternoon, this time from Rice which gives him 22 offers. Phillips was definitely one of the top linebackers in attendance and drew the attention of linebacker coach Tony Tademy throughout the workout. He also ran in the 4.7 range which isn't bad considering he's continuing to work on his speed. Phillips did well enough on Friday that he was told the coaches should have a decision on where he stands for an offer within the week.

2013 CB Darby Smith(5'9" 175) Ennis HS Ennis, TX

Smith isn't the tallest cornerback, but his footwork was one of the best on the day. Smith won more battles than he lost during one-on-one's, even going against Robbie Rhodes a few times to break up some passes. He's definitely an under the radar kid at the moment, but expect that to change as the season approaches.

2013 CB/QB Wesley Harris(6'1" 165) Southwest HS, Ft. Worth, TX

Harris didn't work out at quarterback and spent a majority of his time working as a cornerback. Harris has excellent size for the position and once he develops better flexibility in his hips, he can definitely make the transition into playing cornerback in college. Harris ran an unofficial 4.53 forty on the day.

2013 WR Dameon Gamblin (5'10" 165) Mesquite

Gamblin was one of the top receivers in attendance and had the best play of the day against one of the Frogs' newest offers. On a post route, Gamblin completely turned that particular defensive back around and drew a ton of praise from those in attendance. Gamblin was one of the better route runners in attendance and caught everything thrown his direction.

2013 WR Buck Wilson (5'11" 165) Commerce

Wilson was another receiver who was held after the camp so the coaches could further evaluate his skills. Wilson worked exclusively as a slot receiver and displayed good speed and the ability to catch the ball even when the coverage was there.


This camp undoubtedly had the fastest kids ever at a TCU camp. One player who really set him apart in the forty was Mansfield Timberview runningback Josh Smith who clocked a 4.3.

Cedric Dale Jr. out of Keller Timber Creek was another player who ran a good forty, posting a low 4.4 for his best. Last week Dale ran a 4.40 at the Oklahoma Camp.

2015 prospect makes a splash

We usually don't put too much time into reporting on prospects that are going into their sophomore year but one 2015 prospect just about stole the show in the afternoon session.

Guys, remember this name because this kid will be on everyone's list in the very near future. We would like to introduce you to Huntsville's Morie Evans. One of the most impressive looking athletes on the field also turned in one of the best performances. He came in at 5'11" 190 pounds and ran a 4.38 40. Coach Patterson was so impressed with the young man that he sent him over to introduce himself to Coach Glasgow. Talk about an impressive looking kid, you won't find many that look the part more than Evans.

HornedFrogBlitz.com has updates from these prospects and several others from Friday's camp and will give their thoughts in the coming days and will also have photos from the event.

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