IN THE HUDDLE: Sabbath Joseph

While there are some stars we already know about in Florida, here is a linebacker who is starting make some noise with his tremendous ability to play the game of football. With the University of Miami No. 1 on his list, and FSU, Tennessee, Iowa and the University of Georgia in the mix as well, here is a player to keep an eye on.

During the spring and into the summer, www.floridakids.us will bring you our IN THE HUDDLE segments with football players throughout the state of Florida.

These are similar to the evaluations we pass on to the hundreds of colleges who visit our website, call us on the phone and correspond via e-mail.

Here is another top football player to keep an eye on this season – and beyond.

PLAYER: Sabbath Joseph
POSITION: LB
SCHOOL: Miami Central.
HEAD COACH: Anthony Saunders.
HEIGHT: 6-0
WEIGHT: 210
SPEED: 4.55
www.floridakids.us Pre-Spring Rating: 130

After the pre Nike Camp back in February, Joseph didn't look pleased with the time he had in the 40-yard dash and also in the shuttle run. While it is a way to get a read on an athlete, it tells people very little how someone can play the sport of football.

Having watched him play twice as a junior during the regular season, at two summer camps and four different times on film, the times that he ran in Coral Gables, at the University of Miami, told me nothing about how solid a football player this young man has the potential to become.

When he attended the Perfect Competition/FloridaKids.us camp he only showed what type of football talent he will be during his senior season for the Rockets. This is a budding star on the horizon.

"I thought Sabbath was one of the most physical linebackers I saw in the junior class last season," said Charles Fishbein of FloridaKids.us and Scout.com. "He reminded me a lot of Elijah Hodge the way he played and dropped back into pass coverage."

STRENGTHS: Joseph does drop into pass coverage as well as any linebacker I have watched. He has great feet, keeps his hips low and has tremendous concentration, which is hard to find in a 17-year-old prospect.

Remembering those times he put up at the Nike Camp isn't something that coaches will want to do. Test him and you will lose. He has great closing speed and patrols the field from sideline-to-sideline a lot like his former teammate Ali Highsmith.

Playing the run is something that he learned to do against his own team. When you have teammates with the speed and running instincts as rising senior Terry Williams, and rising juniors Gordon Warner and Avione Rolle, you get practice going against the best, and Joseph passed the test - often!

WHAT HE NEEDS TO WORK ON: Sabbath has a habit of getting on himself too much. He expects his play to be flawless, and has even started to play receiver to get a better grasp on what the defenders are thinking.

He just needs to step back and enjoy his senior year, and there is little doubt that he will be a top 100 player by the end of the season.

IN CONCLUSION: Because he is a part of one of the state's most athletic defenses, there is little doubt that the name Sabbath Joseph will be someone you will hear about over and over again.

COLLEGES ON THE HORIZON: University of Miami is his first choice, but Florida State, Tennessee, Iowa and the University of Georgia are close behind.

If you have film (VHS/DVD) or a color photo of a player and you want us to get him aboard in our INSIDE THE HUDDLE series, simply e-mail us at FloridaKids1@hotmail.com or forward to Florida Kids, P.O. Box 3181, Hallandale Beach, Fl. 33009.
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