Rising Stars Notebook, Day Two

SEATTLE - Enough with the formalities: let's get down to some football! And even though Washington's 2013 home opener is still a couple of months away, the UW coaches hosted Day Two of their Rising Stars Camp Friday, complete with enough star power to light up the new Husky Stadium for a night session of Husky Ball.

Not everyone expected to participate Friday arrived. There was no Andrew Mike, who apparently unofficially visited UW earlier in June and no Michah Quick, who is working on summer school and other things down in Fresno. Joe Mixon is at his team's camp and there were others, like Juanita's Paul Finau and Portland Jesuit standout Henry Mondeaux that were seen at camp but it's unclear if they are just unofficially visiting or if they'll take part in Saturday's camp.

Here's a quick position-by-position breakdown of who was there and who stood out.

Tate Martell (Poway 2017). The UW verbal commit showed up Friday ready to compete with the big boys, and he did very well. He needs to tighten up his throwing motion, but he delivers the ball quickly and accurately.
Running Back:
Chico McClatcher (Federal Way 2015). With Mixon not around, as well as top target Demario Richard, it was up to the youngsters to provide the fireworks. McClatcher certainly is capable of that, and Chico has been working out too. He's still in the 5-8, 5-9 range, but now he's up to around 175 pounds and looks solid.

Brandon Wellington (Eastside Catholic 2016). As it was Thursday, Wellington was getting a lot of attention from the UW staff, and for good reason. Even though he'll only be a sophomore for EC this fall, the 6-foot, 180-pound Wellington is a pure athlete with a genuine gift for running with the ball. He's another youngster it appears the Huskies have targeted, and while it may be too early for a scholarship offer I wouldn't be shocked at all to see Wellington's name near the top of the 2016 in-state recruiting wish list.
Wide Receiver:
Cameron Sims (Ouachita Parish 2014). Sims, the No. 10 receiver in the country (also from the same school as former UW commit Caleb Tucker), showed up for the morning session and tore it up. The 6-foot-4, 200-pound Sims did everything you'd expect a top-10 performer to do, and then some. He was simply overpowering. With offers from nearly every big school in the country, Sims is expected to make a verbal commitment at the end of the summer.

Erik Brown (Summit 2014). The Huskies have been on Brown's short list for a while, and he had a chance to show his stuff Friday before taking off to Beaverton, Ore. to get ready for The Opening. He's very athletic and can make all the catches. A prototypical receiver prospect with big-potential at the next level, Brown will be announcing his college decision during The Opening, most likely between Washington and UCLA.

Terence Grady (Kentwood 2014). Grady, who we have lovingly nicknamed 'Sideshow Bob' for his out of this world hair, is just one of those players that draws attention to himself and then backs it up with his play. While there are guys out there with bigger offers, bigger portfolios, bigger names - Grady had as good a day as any of them. The 6-foot-5, 190-pound Grady made all the catches, and even wrestled them away on jump balls. I don't know if Grady turned the UW coaches to the point of offering in a short class, but he'd be a slam dunk walk-on option, in my opinion.

WR Tyjon Lindsey (Poway 2017). At 5-foot-9 and 150 pounds, Lindsey was the 2017 version of McClatcher, but more of a wide receiver. He will be Martell's go-to guy at Poway starting this fall, so expect to see a lot of Martell-to-Lindsey connections for the distance. To see more, you can watch film of Lindsey HERE
Tight Ends:
Chase Blakley (Coeur d'Alene 2014). The pride of the Vikings, the 6-foot-4, 245-pound Blakley worked out during both the morning and afternoon sessions and will head to Beaverton for The Opening, repping the Huskies the whole way. Blakley has a chance to be a real load in college, and he already has the moves to get separation in space. It will be interesting to see how he does against some of the top linebackers in the country during The Opening's 7-on tournament.

Quin May (Napa 2014). No, that's not a vintage. May came to Seattle with the rep as a versatile athlete, good enough to play offense or defense. He played offense and definitely stood out along with Blakley. He's taller than Blakley but not as thick or as imposing physically, but there's no question he has room to grow into his impressive physique. May will certainly be a name to follow over the next months to see if he's a second tight end Washington decides to take. He is athletic, so his versatility could pay dividends for him down the road.
Offensive Linemen:
Layth Friekh (Peoria Centennial 2014). Friekh was the cream of the crop when it came to 2014 tackles Friday - and it wasn't much of a contest. He held his own against a morning one-on-one session consisting of Qualen Cunningham, Don Hill and Matt Dickerson - and that's saying something. The 6-foot-5, 265-pound Friekh has room to grow, and I believe the Huskies have already targeted him as one of the three tackles they want to sign for 2014.

Trey Adams (Wenatchee 2015). It was clear watching the UW staff Friday that they were enamored with the play of Adams, who - along with Bellevue's Henry Roberts and Newport's Calvin Throckmorton - should make up the early hit list of top in-state tackles for the class of 2015. We were able to confirm that Adams did receive an offer during the camp and will continue to check out the facilities and campus during the rest of his visit. We'll be in touch with Adams after the camp Sunday to see how the UW offer impacts his recruitment. Right now we've been led to believe this could be a game-changing offer for Adams, so stay tuned.

Defensive Linemen:
Ainu'u Taua (Lompoc 2014). While the DL wasn't loaded on Thursday, Tosh Lupoi came fully armed with a handful of top defensive linemen - and Lompoc's Taua was right there in the thick of things all morning. Taua is generously listed at 6-foot-1; I'd say that's if his hair is especially frizzy on any particular day. He looks a lot closer to 6-feet tall, but his first step is cat-quick.

Jacob Daniel (Clovis North 2015). Daniel is a stud. He's bigger than the 6-foot-4 and 298 pounds listed on Scout.com, but don't be surprised if he gains weight in the fat-muscle exchange that's expected to happen in the coming years. Like Taua, he has a quick first step and has a great feel as to what it takes to get into the backfield from the defensive interior. He has a lot of scholarship offers already, so for the Huskies to nab a camp visit from Daniel bodes well for the future.

Qualen Cunningham (Chandler Hamilton 2014). Coming from the home of another defensive stud, Terrell Suggs, Cunningham was a surprise visitor to Montlake this week but he made his presence felt right away Friday morning. The kid is greased lightning coming off the edge, and only Layth Friekh could stay with him - and even then it was 50/50 and pick 'em. Cunningham has a litany of great offers, so if UW can pull out another rabbit from the desert like they did last year with Marcus Farria it would be a huge coup for Lupoi and the defensive staff.

Matt Dickerson (Junipero Serra 2014). From the home of former UW running back Erich Wilson, Dickerson has been a coveted kid for Washington for what seems a long time now. They offered back in early spring and his list of suitors has grown exponentially since - but back in April he told us an unofficial visit to Montlake back then 'set the standard' and a first-rate camp appearance Friday solidified his status as a prospect the Huskies are going to move Heaven and Earth to get.

Don Hill (Boise Timberline 2014). Hill went step-for-step with players like Cunningham and Dickerson all morning long, and while he's not quite as big as they are he showed a tenacity and spirit for competition that will keep him in good stead with the UW coaches. Hill committed to the Huskies back in early May and we saw why Friday. Even at 6-foot-4 (max), Hill is a natural pass rusher, but not a one-trick pony. He's clearly a strong athlete who has just started to scratch the surface of his potential.

Michael Mathewes (Mission Viejo 2014). At 6-foot-3 and 235 pounds, Mathewes was one of two defensive ends that showed up Friday as a relative unknown to the media and really impressed. Built similarly to Don Hill, Mathewes explodes out of his stance and makes a bee-line to the quarterback most every time. He is definitely one to keep an eye on this fall. If you are interested in seeing a highlight tape from Mathewes' junior season, you can watch it HERE

John Jackson (Tucson Canyon Del Oro 2014). After leaving camp, I had to find out more on John Jackson. Come to find the dreadlocked, 6-foot-4, 245-pound Jackson has four offers, but not from the schools I expected: New Mexico State, North Dakota State, Northern Arizona, and Wyoming. Jackson is a ridiculous athlete for his size, and while he's slightly below the group of Cunningham, Dickerson and Hill when it came to effective pass rushers, Jackson is way too intriguing to forget about. To watch a 2012 Junior Highlight reel, click HERE
Joel Dublanko (Aberdeen 2016). The 6-foot-3, 215-pound Dublanko is already a known prospect around these parts and with three offers to boot he showed up for the first couple days of Rising Stars to show Washington they should be next in line. Will they pull the trigger on an offer soon? Who knows, but Dublanko is a player you really can't ignore at this point, even at his young age.
Jamal Scott (Anaheim Magnolia 2014). Scott's recruitment has blown up in the last month or so and turned the once unknown prospect into a highly-coveted safety target. The Huskies haven't offered Scott yet, but boy does he pass the look test and looked very solid working out in the morning. At 6-foot-2 and over 200 pounds, Scott could be the replacement for Sean Parker down the road - a hard-hitting safety that isn't afraid to come downhill on ball-carriers or play receivers tough in space.

Drew Lewis (Eastlake 2014). Lewis's recruitment hasn't taken off like gangbusters compared to Scott, but the son of former Seahawks Director of Player Personnel Will Lewis still has five solid offers to his credit and the Huskies were looking long and hard at Lewis as he performed Friday. Lewis and Scott have very similar bodies, and even though it's not a padded camp you can tell both love to put themselves in positions to lay the lumber. We'll see if Lewis did enough to earn an offer from UW or if one may be forthcoming during his senior season.
John Plattenburg (Corona Centennial 2014). A top-20 cornerback nationally, Plattenburg's recruitment has been somewhat similar to Jamal Scott's in the sense that once colleges started to offer they came in droves. At 5-foot-11 and nearly 190 pounds, Plattenburg was the class of a very good group of cornerbacks. His ball skills in terms of turning defense to offense aren't the best, but he sticks to his man like glue and really looks the part of a future Pac-12 defensive back.

Demonte King (Los Alamitos 2014). There were a few players from Los Alamitos that showed up to the Rising Stars Camp, but King was by far the best of the lot. Scout.com's Brandon Huffman highlighted King as an emerging defensive prospect out west a couple months ago, and for good reason: At 6-feet tall he is a very intriguing cornerback. He's athletic enough to play receiver, and did so for a little while, but then went to corner and I think that's where he stood out most.

Nik Needham (Buena Park 2014). UTEP has offered Needham, who was at Servite last year and is the son of Keith Price's quarterback coach, Steve Calhoun. More than one coach remarked Friday how they thought Needham was the best defensive back on the day, maybe even better than Plattenburg. I'm not willing to go that far, but the 6-foot, 180-pound Needham is another corner with size and the physicality to intrigue Pac-12 coaches.

Elijah Jones (Upland 2015). Coming from the same school that produced 2013 UW signee Joe Mathis, Jones is one of two youngsters with offers that impressed Friday. At 5-foot-11 and 175-pounds, Jones worked side-by-side with players like Plattenburg, King and Needham and did not look out of place at all. He's certainly one to look to the future for, as San Diego State has already offered him.

Kameron Powell (Rancho Cucamonga 2015). Oregon State has already offered Powell, who was another underclassman that went stride-for-stride with the seniors to be. He's about an inch shorter than Jones but has all the tenacity and game you'd expect from a 2015 prospect currently carrying a Pac-12 offer. Did the Huskies see enough Friday to pull the trigger themselves? Only time will tell, but I wouldn't be surprised. At 5-foot-10 you have to have game to earn a BCS offer as a sophomore, and Powell certainly stacks up in that regard.

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