Asante Trenchmen Academy Recap

All the news, notes and quotes from the Asante Trenchmen Camp in Los Angeles, where a couple of UCLA targets on the offensive line were in action...

Encinitas (Calif.) La Costa Canyon offensive lineman Erik Magnuson was among the talented big men that showcased their talents during the Asante Trenchmen Academy Camp this past weekend in Los Angeles.

The 6-6, 270-pound tackle already has double-digit offers, and displayed the athleticism and footwork that has made him such a highly sought after prospect, taking home MVP honors in the process.

On the recruiting front, Magnuson continues to pile up offers and said that Miami, Michigan and Oregon currently stand out.

Independence High School offensive lineman Fernando Villanueva travelled south from San Jose and made the most of his trip to Los Angeles.


Magnuson and Villanueva battle in the trenches. (Kevin Carden Photo)
Viilanueva really shined during the one-on-one drills, where he used his athleticism and sound technique to dominate most of the smaller defensive linemen, and won the Best Footwork Award.

At 6-6, he has a very big frame but is on the slim side and will likely need a redshirt year to add weight.

The talented lineman has offers from Oregon State and Washington State and recently attended Cal's Junior Day.

"I really like Cal. I went up there for their Junior Day and they are building new facilities," Villanueva said. "I like their coaching staff and their atmosphere."

Dominguez standout Lacy Westbrook is still recovering from an ankle injury that he suffered last season, but still attended the camp and showed his toughness.

Westbrook recently took unofficial visits to USC and UCLA for their junior day festivities and came away very impressed with both schools.

UCLA - "UCLA's was good. They really showed me the facilities and what kind of programs that they have. The kind of offense and defense they run and what kind of technology and weight room equipment they have to better ourselves to go to the next level."

USC – "USC was really exciting. I got to see a lot of other great athletes from all over the country. Really good coaches and they know the game of football inside and out. They went really deep into academics."

Westbrook currently lists Oregon, UCLA, USC and Washington as his top four schools.

The 2013 class was well represented by Orange Lutheran offensive tackle John Lopez.

The 6-6, 320-pound lineman has already caught the eye of several college coaches, with the hometown UCLA Bruins being the first school to come through with an offer.

"It all came really fast with going out to some of these camps," Lopez said. "All the coaches saw my size and I guess I just have a natural talent playing football."

Getting an offer from UCLA was exciting news because Lopez grew up a fan of the Bruins.

"My family has always been a part of UCLA," he said. "We used to go see their games when I was little."

Dominguez offensive guard Johmel Charles was one of the most intriguing players in attendance. Charles is a 5-10, 240-pound bulldog that won the Strongman Award after putting up 24 reps of 185 pounds during the bench press competition.

Charles is being recruited as a fullback and is hearing from New Mexico, New Mexico State, SMU, Arizona and Arizona State.

"The transition will be easier because I am used to blocking, staying low and being explosive with my legs," he said of being projected as a fullback on the next level.

Charles' high school teammate, Dejon Allen, was one of the top overall prospects and took home the Best Technique Award.

Allen already has a handful of offers and said that Arizona and Arizona State standout as his top schools.

Carson athlete Sia Leni was one of top two-linemen, displaying good quickness off the line as a defensive tackle. Leni was also one of the most impressive players in the weight room, posting 20 reps in the 185-pound bench press.

Other notables: Lavell Sanders won the Fastest Man Award and David Garcia was named a Camp Captain.


Erik Magnuson was named the Asante Trenchmen Academy MVP.


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