New Level Camp: Def. Prospects

With over 200 players in Las Vegas this weekend for the Badger/New Level 7-on-7 Pass Camp, several prospects caught our attention. Here is a look at some of the top defensive prospects who participated in the camp...

Here is a look at some of the top defensive prospects we saw this weekend in Las Vegas at the Badger/New Level Pass Camp. There were obviously more players that were there and had good days, but these were some of the guys who caught our eye.


Meridian (Idaho) Mountain View linebacker Darren Markle, who has a Pac-10 offer, physically looks well put together, and looks like a solid middle backer. He was the top defender for Idaho. Markle moves very well in space and did a nice job jamming the backs and tight ends.

Kyle Van Noy, a Nevada native, also excelled at receiver, but when he played defense, he looked like an elite D-I prospect. Van Noy is big and physical and looks like he could play on the weakside in college if defense is where he ended up. Physically, Van Noy is very similar to D.J. Shoemate, as well as in their versatility.

From Utah, L.T. Filiaga was stellar all day. The South Jordan Bingham backer is still new to the position but is physically, very strong and had very good feet. Filiaga played with some passion out there and was one who you would have loved to see hit with the pads on. Todd Golper anchored CaliTwo's defense and was mostly matched up with the slot receiver, and he too is physical but is excellent in pass coverage. Golper had a few picks on the day and some nice breakups. He's an intelligent player and reads the quarterback exceptionally well. Michael Clay from San Jose Bellarmine Prep is another weakside backer who could make the transition to safety if necessary but he really did a nice job playing backer. He could still add some more weight and be a good WILL in college. Anthony Larceval from La Mesa Helix played a lot of middle backer for CaliTwo, and at 6-1, 250, is a physical presence. Larceval, though, looks like he could get up to 270-280 and be a quick defensive tackle. John Michael Davis is someone we've seen on numerous occasions, and he looked good on Sunday, doing a good job in space, and in pass coverage. Davis looked quicker than when we saw him last spring, and he's got good instincts. He too looks like he could end up at safety. Robert Larivee had a nice day as well, and has a very good build. He's more of a middle. Aside from having the best hair on the day, Dylan Reda from San Clemente made some good plays from his spot.

Vontaze Burfict is the top middle backer in the country and he's a vicious hitter. Unfortunately for Burfict, the pads weren't out on Sunday, so he had to hold up what would have likely been a big hit. Still, Burfict looked very good in coverage, and does a good job of shutting down the middle of the field. A couple of times, a running back would try to lower the shoulder, and on one occasion, Burfict didn't even budge but the back landed on his butt.

Robert Franco played more of the weakside for CaliOne and had some good plays, a couple of times running down a back downfield for the stop. Brent Seals also had some good moments and he has some of the best feet of any backer there. Seals looks like he'll end up at safety in college.

Other linebackers who had good days include Ace Ward, D'Mario Carter, Jake Pele and Andrew Meredith.

Defensive Backs

Cliff Harris is the top defensive back on the West Coast and on Sunday, he showed why, locking down the biggest and best receiver early in the day, and making a ton of plays on both sides of the ball. The five-star prospect did a good job disguising his coverage and he gets such a good break on the ball. Harris just about shut down his side of the field to the offense.

Chris Metcalf and T.J. McDonald, a pair of USC commits, both looked physically impressive. McDonald struggled at times in coverage, but got in gear by the end of the day. Metcalf is more of a gambler, going for the big play, but reined it in over the course of the action. Byron Moore is a guy we liked on both sides of the ball, maybe even more as a receiver, but he looked the most comfortable in the secondary.

Utah native Chris Washington was probably the best revelation on the day. Washington played safety and looks like he could even grow into a Will in college, but on this day, safety was where he excelled. He had numerous picks, tremendous breaks on the ball and quick feet. Washington had a pick-six that was controversially overturned, that included an impressive shake of a receiver. Expect the interest in him to increase as his film gets out.

Nolan Washington from Seattle was in lockdown mode most of the day, doing an exceptional job of taking his side of the field away and using quick feet and hands to bat away a ton of passes.

Chris Badger out of Provo Timpview is a younger player, he's in the 2010 class, but he didn't let his age get in the way of a strong day. Badger still will grow, but he looked mature on the field, and very confident in his ability to make a play.

Tre Watson from Burien Kennedy had some good plays in the second part of the day as he got more confident and comfortable. He was finding his way in the early going, but really picked things up. Gino Simone, who starred at receiver, tried his hand at defense a bit and looked very good.

Corona Santiago's Sean Martin, after Harris, probably was the most consistent performer, and easily was the day's leader in interceptions, including three in CaliTwo's win over CaliOne. Martin looks bigger than when we saw him in the fall, when he was still on the skinnier side, and did a good job matching up with the opponents top receiver. Martin could also play safety, but he's got really good hips and recovery ability, that you'd want to keep him at corner.

San Bernardino Cajon corner Marlon Pollard is another guy who's put on weight on what was a skinnier frame and he too had a strong performance on Sunday, playing a lot of nickel. Pollard has long arms that bat away a lot of passes. Kenny Cavness from San Francisco Sacred Heart Cathedral was the biggest surprise for CaliTwo and he had some clutch interceptions himself. He looks like a future safety, and did well playing both spots. Devin Jackson from Chino Hills Ayala might be only 5-8, but he played much bigger, showing off good backpedal quickness and ability to jam.

Sheldon Price from Bishop Amat is a taller, lankier corner who has really long arms and looks like he could easily add 15-20 pounds and be a solid 6-1, 185. Price, who's father played in the NFL, did a good job in coverage, has good hips and plays physically. Tevin McDonald, who's father also played in the NFL, may not have his older brother T.J.'s size yet, but he looked like he belonged, despite being one of the younger players there. Rashaad Reynolds plays quarterback for his high school team, but he knows his future is in the secondary, and he looked like a natural. Daniel Cox has played defensive end and linebacker for his Sacramento Christian Brothers team, but he may be best suited for safety and saw his first extensive action in the secondary. It was a smooth transition for him there too.

One of the best performers, despite his teams struggles was Marte Sears from Fresno McClane. From a physical standpoint, Sears may have been the most impressive safety from California there. His brother, Johnny, played corner at Michigan, but Marte already has the makings of a D-I body as a safety, and he can also play corner. He could even put a few more pounds on and play Will. Sears had numerous big breakups, and two picks in the morning and has exceptional quickness and plays with a swagger. Chris Brown, from Newbury Park, played both ways on Sunday, and he looked solid at DB.

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