Jacob Sirmon (Kim Grinolds)

May Madness - The Standouts

Ford Sports Performance put on the third-annual May Madness event at Bellevue's Newport High School on Saturday and there were over 150 prospects on hand for the workout and 7v7 tournament. Here's who stood out on both sides of the ball...

The Quarterbacks


Every time he steps on the field, Bothell's Jacob Sirmon impresses you with his size, arm and gregarious personality. He's got the physical tools to be the best quarterback in the country, but it's always been a question of whether he will put it all together or not. On Saturday, Sirmon won the "Biggest Arm" competition for the second year in a row and he showed a nice touch on several passes during the one-on-one sessions. 

In addition to Sirmon, the other 2018 quarterbacks who stuck out during the workout were Redmond's Teryn Berry, Nooksack Valley's Casey Bauman, Lake Stevens' Conor Bardue, Meridian's Simon Burkett and Rainier Beach's Max Nall.

Berry can really spin the ball. Only thing holding him back is his height, but the kid can run, he's an accurate passer and he really shows the ability to fit the ball into tight spots.

Bauman is a lot like Sirmon in that he's a physical specimen at 6'5", 220 pounds. He's really improved as a passer since the season due to a lot of work with Jake Heaps at his Empire Quarterback Academy.

Bardue, Burkett and Nall all are the trigger-men for explosive offenses and each had their moments on Saturday.

2019 quarterbacks Ayden Ziomas from Glacier Peak and Dylan Morris from Graham-Kapowsin also lit it up at times. Ziomas isn't very big, but he's smart and he has great timing. Morris is one of the top quarterbacks in the class and he always seems to light it up at camps and Saturday was no different.


The Running Backs


The running back group wasn't as loaded as some of the other positions, but 2018 Snohomish's Keegan Stich is an impressive kid with the ability to make guys miss int he open field or run between the tackles with power. He showed good hands in the passing portion of the event.

There were a handful of other backs on hand, but none stood out when we got the chance to watch them go through their drills.


The Wide Receivers and Tight Ends


Even though he was one of the youngest wideouts on the field, Scott was one of the smoothest operators out there.

He's strong off the line of scrimmage, he's got a great burst when he gets by the defensive back. He did have a pretty glaring drop after he beat a defensive back on a slant route, but other than that, he looks like he will be one of the top two or three players in the state's 2020 class.

Mason Starling has made the move from Franklin Pierce in Tacoma up to Rainier Beach and he looks the part as one of the top 2018 wideout prospects in the state. He's savvy getting off the line of scrimmage, he's explosive in and out of his cuts and he'll fight for the ball in the air.

No prospect has been hotter than 2018 Jackson wideout Daniel Arias in recent weeks and he showed why on Saturday with his ability to get open and "go up and get it". 

Rainier Beach's Anthony Stell showed great quickness and the ability to get off the line in one-on-one work. He's got a handful of offers and more could start rolling in once he hits the camp circuit this summer.

Clover Park's D'Angelo Biggs and Skyview's DeMonte Horton were two of the biggest surprises of the camp. Both showed outstanding quickness and good hands in the one-on-one session.


Washington commit Devin Culp is impressive on the hoof, but what really stuck out was how much better he was at catching the ball. As a sophomore when we saw him last spring, Culp really fought the ball and got by more with his athleticism than his abilities as a receiver. Now, he seems figured out how to run routes and catch passes more fluidly and that spelled doom for almost all of the defensive backs he faced.

Rainier Beach's Jarrell Anderson, like Culp, really seems to have worked on his receiving skills and it showed on Saturday with the way he set defensive backs and linebackers up on short and intermediate routes. He also showed good speed getting deep, but we didn't see him connect with a quarterback on a long pass during one-on-one work.

Keep an eye on 2020 Eastside Catholic tight end D.J. Rogers. He's big, he's strong and he's pretty athletic, but he hasn't had the chance to prove it much on the field since he took a back seat to Hunter Bryant. He's going to be a good one.


Offensive Line


Couldn't have been more impressed with Corvallis (Or.) OL Marco Brewer. He's got great feet, he's a competitor and he handled almost every one-on-one rep with ease. He's got a handful of offers and more could be on the way once coaches get a chance to watch him work this spring.

We've always been a big fan of Newport's Charlie Baumann and he didn't disappoint in the linemen drills on Saturday. He's gritty and he loves to mix it up and get after guys. He's not suited for tackle although his height might make you think that he could handle it. 

The real up-and-comer among the offensive linemen, the one that has everyone talking right now is 2019 Rainier Beach Nathaniel Kalepo. He moves really well, but his fundamentals still need some work. He got beat one a couple of inside moves, but after he got some coaching, he corrected things on his next rep.


Defensive Line and Linebackers


White is a hard worker and he's explosive off the line of scrimmage. A 2019 prospect, the only thing holding him back is his lack of height. Keep an eye on this kid. He'll be one of the standouts for Lincoln this season.

The rest of the defensive linemen really didn't stand out in the time we watched them.


Winston is one of the top outside linebackers on the West Coast and he really held his own during the one-on-one session. He really jams tailbacks and tight ends and doesn't allow them to get clean releases. 

The camp setup isn't typically a setting that Central Cathlolic's Malakai Salu will shine because he's much better with pads on, but he was solid in coverage and showed the ability to stick with receivers and tight ends in coverage.

2018 Archbishop Murphy linebacker Emmanuel Osuoha is an emerging star and you can see why with his abilities in coverage where he showed the ability to stick with tight ends and running backs.


Defensive Backs


Gordon is so smooth and he's great when the ball is in the air. He had several picks in his one-on-one reps and he really played a physical game against the receivers.

It's hard to believe that 2018 Eastside Catholic safety Malik Putney only has three offers, but we've heard more and more schools are starting to notice him and he's on the cusp of blowing up as a recruit. He looked really good in coverage, but he's at his best when the pads are on and he can play a physical brand of football.

Bellevue's Isaiah Ifanse is a talented corner and he really locked guys down most of the day.

Gonzaga Prep's Sam Lockett made the trip across the mountains and he was one of the best defensive backs on the field on Saturday. He actually got bowled over by a bigger receiver on one rep and then demanded another one and locked the guy down, batting the pass away and glaring at the receiver as they returned to the sidelines.

A 2020 prospect from the east side of the state worth keeping an eye on is Pullman's Isaiah Strong. He's very athletic and his Football I.Q. is off the charts. It should be, his father is former Seattle Seahawks fullback Mack Strong.

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