Five Thoughts on the West, Day Two

Five thoughts on the West's second day of practice at the U.S. Army All-America Bowl.

* Oklahoma commit Trey Metoyer didn't receive as many snaps after a dominant Monday performance, and his absence allowed USC commitment Victor Blackwell to emerge as the West's top receiver on Tuesday. Blackwell showed great hands and made excellent adjustments to the ball in-flight. He isn't as highly rated as fellow USC commitment George Farmer, and lacks Farmer's pure physical tools. But there's something to be said for getting open and catching the ball, and Blackwell did both Tuesday.

* Who is the best cornerback on the West side? According to multiple receivers Tuesday, that player is USC commitment DeAnthony Thomas, Scout.com's No. 1 cornerback. Thomas might wind up playing running back in college, but his ceiling is off the charts as a defensive back.

"Even if he falls, he's going to get right back up and make a play because he's that quick," said Jaxon Shipley. "He's very physical, too, and he's one of those guys who is just a speed demon."

* The West rotates each of its running backs through the fullback spot, which made for an intriguing group when Cibolo Steele running back Malcolm Brown was asked to pave the way for San Antonio Madison back Aaron Green. But the most intriguing pairing might have been the opposite group, when Green — listed at 185 pounds — was asked to serve as Brown's fullback. Brown weighs in the 220-225 range.

Brown admitted that his time at fullback was probably the more natural of the two.

"I just go out there and play wherever the coaches have me at," Brown said.

But Green disagreed.

"It's better for Malcolm when I'm at fullback," Green joked. "I'm a bigger dude, so I just go out and lay guys out."

* If you're a Texas fan, the Longhorn linebackers made you more happy on Tuesday. After a rough first day, Steve Edmond and Kendall Thompson each responded well on day two. Edmond showed increased confidence and played downhill at the rate expected of the No. 2 middle linebacker in the class. Not to be outdone, Thompson forced a fumble and nearly came up with another interception.

But perhaps most importantly, Thompson, who was rumored to be considering LSU, reaffirmed his commitment to Texas.

"I'm 150 percent going to Texas," Thompson said. "Hook 'em."

* On Monday, defensive lineman Marquis Anderson of Cibolo Steele sat out most of practice with a shoulder stinger. But Anderson was back in full pads Tuesday, meaning that Texas commitment Quincy Russell remained as the only defensive lineman questionable for Saturday's game. Russell is still nursing a knee injury from earlier this year, and put himself at 40-45 percent on Tuesday. But he also said that he wanted to play in the game, and added that him sitting out was the trainer's decision.

"I feel good," Russell said. "I feel like I can play, and I want to play."


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