International Bowl: Trials Day One

Standout performers from Day One at the International Bowl Team USA Trials.

* One of the most impressive players in person, on the hoof, was San Antonio East Central safety Austin Jupe. Jupe measured out at 6-1 186, and has a frame similar to current Texas safety Kenny Vaccaro.

The other players jokingly called Jupe the Honey Badger because his hairstyle is similar to LSU standout Tyrann Mathieu. But the two share something else in common as well: they're both destructive forces on the defensive end.

Jupe plays cornerback for East Central, but he projects as a cover safety at the next level. And he shows great feet and physicality for the position. He displayed outstanding ball skills, intercepting one pass, and taking the ball out of the hands of another receiver even after giving up position.

He should also get high marks for leadership: multiple times on Saturday he pulled aside younger players to instruct them on how to improve.

Jupe is part of what should be a very strong secondary at East Central next season, along with cornerback Matt Coleman (5-9 160). Coleman is the younger brother of 2012 prospect Nick Coleman. Matt had a nice day as well on Saturday, especially in the afternoon session. Matt, a trickster who has been clocked in the 4.4-second range in the 40, could see interest start to pick up this spring.


* When I asked Jupe about the toughest matchup, he turned and pointed at the guy standing right behind him, Livingston athlete Chevoski Collins (6-1 185).

Collins, who is working out at wide receiver, said he's at about 80 percent after sustaining a hip-pointer in a basketball game. But even at 80 percent, Collins showed speed and fluidity that made him darned near impossible to defend. He also showed a fantastic final gear, accelerating past defenders to catch up to passes that looked like they were too far overthrown.

Even more impressively, Collins seemed to take more repetitions than any other wide receiver, even with his injury. Whenever players were a bit slow to step up, he hopped right in front to take the next rep. I talked with a scout afterward who said that Collins's confidence level could make him special.

Collins was probably the top receiver in attendance, though 2014 prospect Keyon Dilosa (6-2 188) and 2013 receiver Ryan Shakeir (5-8 150) were also very good. Dilosa is the younger brother of former Texas standout James Kirkendoll.


* It was a tough day for quarterbacks. The cold meant that there were some dropped passes, and the wind certainly didn't help matters. But there were still a few who stood out.

Potentially the most consistent was 2013 QB Austin Henyon (5-11 183) of Trinity Valley School in Fort Worth. Henyon showed great accuracy on a number of throws, displaying some arm strength and placement when he hit Shakeir on a flag route. Henyon also had nice footwork, and is somebody who could fit well into a spread at the next level.

2014 prospect Bear Fenimore (6-1 221) has a thick body and great footwork. But he stood out the most during drills when the quarterbacks had more than one option. While several QBs in attendance seemed to want to make the more difficult throw, just because they could, the Round Rock Westwood signal caller had no problem hitting the underneath receiver if that throw was open. He threw a nice ball, too.

Max Partlo (6-3.5 203) was another 2014 player who stood out, largely for his frame, size and ability to spin the ball. He looked outstanding in drills, then wasn't quite as sharp when they added defenders. He'll be someone to watch as the next few days go on.


* Obviously, there's only so much you can tell about running backs in these kinds of situations, especially for the few power backs in attendance. But count me impressed by 2013 prospect Justice Love (5-10 177). Love had some thickness to him, but most impressively, showed fluidity in his cuts and the ability to shake a defender in space. And he did it without dancing, instead making one sharp cut and getting upfield.

2014 prospect Gavin McDaniel (5-9 155) was awfully difficult for the linebackers to stay with because of his speed. McDaniel is the younger brother of Notre Dame running back Cam McDaniel, though he's a different kind of runner, which Gavin pointed out afterward. Cam is thicker and more of a balanced running back, whereas Gavin is a pure speed guy at this point, somebody who can plant his foot and take off.


* I didn't get to spend as much time with the linemen. But you don't have to spend much time in that area to come away impressed with Christian Lacouture (6-5 254). The Texas A&M commitment from A&M Consolidated won every matchup I saw, and he passes the eyeball test. He's big, but has the frame to add quite a bit more weight. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that he plays in the 270-280 range in college.

The other lineman to stand out was Tyler Colbert (5-11 320). Colbert has nice feet for his size.


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