Army Bowl: Breaking Down the Defensive Players for the West

Jan. 6 -- Scout breaks down the players on defense for the West at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio...

The U.S. Army All-American Bowl kicks off on Monday, with practices starting in San Antonio leading up to the game being played on Saturday, January 9 at 12 p.m. CT.

Here is a breakdown of the defense for the West.

Defensive Line

The headliner for the defensive line is Texas A&M commit Justin Madubuike from McKinney (Texas) North.  The future Aggie is the lone five-star defensive end and is the No. 13 overall player in the 2016 class.

He leads a strong defensive line contingent that is heavy with Texans.

Cibolo (Texas) Steele defensive end Mark Jackson is another Scout 300 end headed to A&M and he'll join Madubuike in bringing an Aggie-laden pass rush. 

The defensive tackle has Houston (Texas) Westside tackle Jordan Elliott, who is committed to Michigan and fellow Scout 300 four-star prospect Ross Blacklock from Missouri City (Texas) Elkins.

Inside with Elliott and Blacklock is Meridian (Miss.) tackle Raekwon Davis, who's a soft commit to Alabama and Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton tackle Garrett Rand, who is a Wisconsin commit.

On the edge, Los Angeles (Calif.) Windward defensive end Breland Brandt, a UCLA verbal, Darien (Ill.) Hinsdale defensive end Josh King, a Michigan State pledge and Wichita (Kan.) East defensive end Xavier Kelly, a Clemson commit, bring their pass rushing to San Antonio.


The linebacker crop is absolutely loaded for the West, with the top three outside linebackers in the country and four of the top six nationally, all on the West roster, and all from California.

The top outside 'backer nationally, Torrance (Calif.) North five-star Mique Juarez, leads the group but right behind him is Fresno (Calif.) Clovis West five-star Caleb Kelly is right behind him nationally and overall out West.

Juarez will decide closer to Signing Day, and is considering UCLA, Mississippi, Washington, Oklahoma and Alabama while Kelly is focusing on Oklahoma, Notre Dame and Oregon.

Stanford commit Curtis Robinson is the No. 3 outside linebacker out of Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei and is pushing for a fifth star himself.

The final member of the California quartet is Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd four-star Camilo Eifler, who is committed to Washington.

Notre Dame commit Daelin Hayes from Ann Arbor (Mich.) Skyline and Manor (Texas) outside linebacker/defensive end Erick Fowler, an LSU commit round out the outside backers.

The lone true inside backer on the roster is Paintsville (Ky.) linebacker Kash Daniel, who is committed to Kentucky.

Defensive Back

Almost half of the secondary headed to San Antonio are players rated by Scout as athletes, showing tremendous position versatility this season and in college.

The highest-rated prospect in the secondary is Jack Jones, the five-star athlete from Long Beach (Calif.) Poly, who is the No. 2 rated athlete nationally.  Jones has a top five of Alabama, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, UCLA and USC.

A pair of Arizona two-way threats are also playing for the West, Arizona State commit Chase Lucas from Chandler (Ariz.) and Byron Murphy from Scottsdale (Ariz.) Saguaro, who is considering the Sun Devils along with Washington and Texas A&M.

Kingwood (Texas) athlete Sewo Olonilua is headed to TCU after he's done with high school and he can play a number of spots.

True corners on the roster are a trio of Scout 300 prospects.

Los Angeles (Calif.) Loyola four-star David Long, who decommitted from Stanford and has a top of two of Michigan and Washington is No. 6 nationally and is joined by No. 7 ranked LaVert Hill from Detroit (Mich.) King, who has Michigan, Michigan State and Penn State on his short list.

Fairfield (Texas) cornerback Charles Oliver is another in-state prospect in the game and he'll stay in the Lone Star State for college, committed to Texas A&M.

At safety is Detroit (Mich.) Cass Tech four-star Demetric Vance, who's committed to Michigan State and Shreveport (La.) Calvary Baptist three-star Chanse Sylvie, a verbal to Oklahoma.

Special Teams

Three of the best specialists nationally dot the West's roster and all are headed to in-state programs for college.

The No. 2 kicker in the country, Heber City (Utah) Wasatch four-star Skyler Southam, is committed to BYU.

The No. 2 punter nationally, Drue Chrisman from Cincinnati (Ohio) La Salle is committed to Ohio State.

And the West's top longsnapper, Hayward (Calif.) Moreau Catholic's Johnny Den Bleyker, is committed to UCLA.

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