During the summer and into the season, 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: Daron Love
SCHOOL: Palm Beach Gardens Dwyer
40 SPEED: 4.47
HEAD COACH: Jack Daniels
www.floridakids.us Summer Rating: 55
As he took two steps and looked back for the ball, there was just something special about Daron Love. Whether it was his build, his quick step after making the catch - or perhaps his tremendous concentration, this was a football player who was easily among the best in the state.
In a state where talent doesn't remain hidden for too long, Love is a truly someone that will play this game for a long time at an elite level.
If you talk his coaches, they fall all over themselves running out of praise for this gifted athlete. Talk to his teammates, who are sometimes too into themselves to praise another teammate, and they are simply impressed.
Because I see so many quality athletes, getting many quality football players by me is tough. Not that I am the definitive answer, but the fact that I do have the pleasure of watching so many games, practices and camps, I usually come up with the rising seniors before the summer list comes out. In this case, it came right at the deadline for picking the best to watch for over the next few months.
As he goes through drills, I am reminded that I saw this talented football player before. Having watched the Panthers play twice a year ago, it all comes back to me, but this was a player who lined up more as a strong safety than the wide receiver I watched him play - or even the safety that many colleges who came through in the spring like him at.
"Daron is a quality football player who will simply outwork anyone," said Daniels. "I have said this many times, but just because the recruiting sites haven't heard about him doesn't mean anything. The colleges who came through here over the past few months know who he is."
STRENGTHS: Here is a rare combination of speed, strength, athletic ability and football skills. Those are things that you usually don‘t find at this level.
To me, he is a like Brandon Heath, who Love grew up with, or maybe a Preston Parker, who he has played against the past two seasons. When asked to compare himself to any player that we would know, Love just should his head and smiled. If he was thinking that he was a one-of-a-kind, he was right on target. He is a tremendous find.
His pass running abilities are superior. They are as good as anyone I have watched all season. He makes cuts and then puts on a burst of speed that helps combine those skills I just eluded to.
On defense, Love supports the run extremely well. That comes from his strong safety training from last season. His hips are loose and he becomes very physical which makes me believe that if he was called upon to play corner, he could!
WHAT HE NEEDS TO WORK ON: Because he is now someone who will be directly in the spotlight on both sides, he needs to learn how to pick up his blocks a lot better. Obviously, as time moves a long, I suspect that he will become an all-around receiver.
Defensively, he does so many things well, I couldn't find too many things he needed to work on. I see him as a safety, and this is one young man who could play this position at any school in the nation.
OVERALL: Here is one of many athletes who was discovered because he is devoted to getting better. On a day when I went to Dwyer trying to get a look at rising senior defensive lineman Tuboris Larkins and linebacker/running back Matt Speed, I came away believing that I just stumbled upon one of the success stories of the summer.
COLLEGES ON THE HORIZON: From Miami to Florida, Florida State, North Carolina State, Georgia, Mississippi State and several others have been through to watch this outstanding athlete play.
Talking to three major college coaches, who would comment off the record, all admit that this is one player who will jump into the spotlight - in a hurry!
Get IN THE HUDDLE with some more of Florida's emerging stars:
IN THE HUDDLE: CORY MATHIS – LAKELAND GEORGE JENKINS
IN THE HUDDLE: MARKIHE ANDERSON – FORT MYERS DUNBAR
IN THE HUDDLE: TONY WILSON – DAYTONA BEACH MAINLAND
IN THE HUDDLE: TERRY WILLIAMS – MIAMI CENTRAL
IN THE HUDDLE: JAVARRIS JAMES – IMMOKALEE
IN THE HUDDLE: IAN EVANS – CLEARWATER COUNTRYSIDE
IN THE HUDDLE: TERRON SANDERS – BRADENTON SOUTHEAST
IN THE HUDDLE: DANIEL WENGER – FORT LAUDERDALE ST. THOMAS AQUINAS
IN THE HUDDLE: DEANDRE MCDANIEL – TALLAHASSEE GODBY
IN THE HUDDLE: ORLANDO FRANKLIN – DELRAY BEACH ATLANTIC
IN THE HUDDLE: TRAVIUS THOMPSON –LAUDERDALE LAKES BOYD ANDERSON
IN THE HUDDLE: BRANDON THOMPKINS –PALM BEACH LAKES
IN THE HUDDLE: JOSH LONG –FORT MYERS
IN THE HUDDLE: DARON ROSE – TAMPA JEFFERSON
IN THE HUDDLE: MICHAEL JOHNSON – WESTON CYPRESS BAY
IN THE HUDDLE: TANNER JONES – CRAWFORDVILLE WAKULLA
IN THE HUDDLE: CHRIS UHRIG – TAMPA JESUIT
IN THE HUDDLE: JOSEPH JACKSON – MIAMI BOOKER T. WASHINGTON
IN THE HUDDLE: SAM YOUNG – FORT LAUDERDALE ST. THOMAS AQUINAS
IN THE HUDDLE: MELVIN PATTERSON – ALACHUA SANTA FE
IN THE HUDDLE: CHANCE ATTAWAY – BLOUNTSTOWN
IN THE HUDDLE: GEORGE ROBINSON – MIAMI CENTRAL
IN THE HUDDLE: TIMOTHY BROWN – MIAMI NORTHWESTERN
IN THE HUDDLE: XAVIER HARRIS – FORT LAUDERDALE
IN THE HUDDLE: DANIEL LINCOLN – OCALA FOREST
IN THE HUDDLE: PATRICK ADOLPHE – DELRAY BEACH ATLANTIC
IN THE HUDDLE: QUINTIN HANCOCK – ST. AUGUSTINE
IN THE HUDDLE: CHARLES DEAS – LAUDERDALE LAKES BOYD ANDERSON
IN THE HUDDLE: DONALD BOWENS – ST. PETERSBURG
IN THE HUDDLE: ROBERT LOVE - PAHOKEE
IN THE HUDDLE: CAZ PIUROWSKI – LAND O'LAKES
IN THE HUDDLE: STERLIN JAMES – SPARR NORTH MARION
IN THE HUDDLE: JOHN WARE – FORT LAUDERDALE CARDINAL GIBBONS
IN THE HUDDLE: MARKEVIOUS POWELL – ORLANDO EVANS
IN THE HUDDLE: BILLY LOWE - LAKELAND
IN THE HUDDLE: JAVON HILL – MIAMI MONSIGNOR PACE
IN THE HUDDLE: CODY CLINTON – BOCA RATON
IN THE HUDDLE: JARED MARTIN – DAVIE WESTERN
IN THE HUDDLE: COLIN MCCARTHY – CLEARWATER CENTRAL CATHOLIC
IN THE HUDDLE: DONTAE JONES – ORLANDO EVANS
IN THE HUDDLE: DAMON PIFER – GREEN COVE SPRINGS CLAY
IN THE HUDDLE: CHRIS SORCE - PACE
IN THE HUDDLE: SHOMARI GRANT - HIALEAH
IN THE HUDDLE: DARRELL ROSEMAN - DUNEDIN
IN THE HUDDLE: JAMES POE – ORLANDO FREEDOM
IN THE HUDDLE: RYAN ELLIS – PONTA VEDRA BEACH NEASE
IN THE HUDDLE: COURTNEY JONES: PENSACOLA
IN THE HUDDLE: BRYAN THOMAS - ZEPHYRHILLS
IN THE HUDDLE: JORDAN DALRYMPLE - OVIEDO
IN THE HUDDLE: PRESTON PARKER – DELRAY BEACH ATLANTIC
IN THE HUDDLE: SABBATH JOSEPH – MIAMI CENTRAL
IN THE HUDDLE: RYAN KHAWLY – HOMESTEAD SOUTH DADE
IN THE HUDDLE: BRANDON JAMES – ST. AUGUSTINE
IN THE HUDDLE: KEITH HOUSTON – IVES ESTATES DR. MICHAEL KROP
IN THE HUDDLE: REGGIE ODOM - DELAND
IN THE HUDDLE: C.J. SPILLER – LAKE BUTLER UNION COUNTY
IN THE HUDDLE: RILEY COOPER – CLEARWATER CENTRAL CATHOLIC
IN THE HUDDLE: JAMES JAMISON – STARKE BRADFORD COUNTY
IN THE HUDDLE: DESMOND GEE - MADISON COUNTY
IN THE HUDDLE: RICKY GARY - PAHOKEE
IN THE HUDDLE: LAURANCE MARIUS – KEY WEST
IN THE HUDDLE: KENRICK ELLIS – GREENACRES JOHN I. LEONARD
IN THE HUDDLE: RICHARD JACKSON – CLERMONT EAST RIDGE
IN THE HUDDLE: LABRANDON GLOVER - PENSACOLA
IN THE HUDDLE: Daron Love
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