Sizing up D prospects in Northern Cal

PALO ALTO -- There's a reason every major Division I program in the land is hot on the trail of Jeff Schweiger, a defensive end from Valley Christian High in San Jose. At Nike's Northern California combine last weekend, the 6-4, 240-pounder was absolutely dominating in one-on-one drills against some of the finest offensive linemen the region has to offer.

Schweiger's stats from Saturday tell a lot of the story: 4.56 in the 40, 4.11 in the shuttle, 31 reps of 185 pounds on the bench and 30.9 inches in the vertical jump.

But seeing Schweiger in action was the real deal, and earned him camp defensive MVP honors. He made Andrew Woodruff, one of the top five hosses in camp, look like he was standing still with some bull-rushes where he nearly wasn't touched. Schweiger's first step is incredible. Michigan, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Colorado, UCLA, USC and Washington are the schools he's considering at this point, but with the rest of the Pac-10 lurking he can pretty much write his own ticket.

Other lads on the defensive side of the ball who impressed last weekend were:

DEFENSIVE LINE
Phillip Mbakagu - Hayward, California (6-2, 260)
Isley Filiaga - Orem (Utah) Timpanogos (5-11.5, 290)
Ekom Udofia - Scottsdale (Ariz.) Chaparral (6-1, 265)
Jonathan Nichols - Oakland (Calif.) St. Elizabeth*
Jason Roberts - Fresno (Calif.) Fresno*
Marvin Jones Jr. - Vallejo (Calif.) Jesse Bethel*

LINEBACKER
Joe Mortensen. The 6-1, 235-pound LB from Concord (Calif.) Clayton Valley moved very well for a guy his size and had the attitude you like to see in a middle thumper. Every coach watching him loved him, and like Mission Viejo's Jed Collins, Mortensen is built very much in the mold of a prototypical MIK, will plug holes. Good all-around day, picked things up well, great recognition. In short - very coachable.

Other LB's to watch:
Ryan Reynolds - Lake Havasu, Arizona (6-1, 218)
Alan Darlin - Elk Grove (Calif.) Laguna Creek (6-0.5, 223)
Terrance Kelley - Concord (Calif.) De La Salle (5-11.5, 207)
Ray Mualaga - Eureka, California*
Parker Hanks - Concord (Calif.) De La Salle (6-0, 205)
Worrell Williams - Sacramento (Calif.) Grant (6-0, 240)
Trenton Tuiasosopo - Everett (Wash.) Mariner (6-1, 220)
David Haile - Union City (Calif.) James Logan (6-3.5, 200)

DEFENSIVE BACK
Bernard Hicks. It's nearly impossible to separate Hicks, a 5-11, 190-pound DB from Fresno (Calif.) Edison from Willie Glasper and Randy Estes, but in the final analysis Hicks had the best feet of all the DB's at camp, and you can't coach that. His natural ability to move in any direction effortlessly was the only difference between him and the other two, but it's substantial and it's what makes Hicks such a fantastic college prospect. The things that make the other two players you can't see without pads on, as both have made their reputations as ferocious hitters.

Other DB's to watch:
Willie Glasper - Concord (Calif.) De La Salle (5-11, 170)
Randy Estes - Los Alamitos, California (6-1, 180)
Marshawn Royal - Fresno (Calif.) Sunnyside*
Antoine Cason - Los Alamitos, California (5-11.5, 165)
Virdell Larkins - Oakland (Calif.) Tech (5-10, 177)
James Lewis - Los Angeles (Calif.) Venice (6-1, 197)
Mesphin Forrester - Los Angeles (Calif.) Venice*
Angelo Fobbs - San Mateo (Calif.) Serra (6-1, 173)
Keenan Jones - Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne (5-11, 170)
Lamar Herron - Sacramento (Calif.) Natomas (6-0, 190)

* signifies vitals not available at press time.

CLICK TO THE CF.C FRONT PAGE FOR A RUN-DOWN ON OFFENSIVE PLAYERS AT THE NOR-CAL NIKE CAMP.

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