Overall, the team that had the best day was Detroit Northwestern. They really came to play and were more aggressive and showed more fight than the other teams today. Both Cass Tech and Renaissance were missing key contributers, but the competition was still good.
The most interesting matchup came right away as 5-star CB Boubacar Cissoko took the field against Renaissance who features one of the state's best receivers, Sam Gaymon. The two were not matched up right away and Cissoko instead matched up on junior Dana Dixon, a good player in his own right, but at 6'2, 175 lbs, the lanky Dixon simply could not get off of Cissoko's press. Gaymon had a little more success, but still was redirected by Boubacar's press coverage. Gaymon did go over the middle and catch a scoring pass that Boubacar just got a fingertip on, the only completion he would give up on the day.
Gaymon looked very good throughout the day, he has been working on his speed and explosion and it showed. He wasn't featured much in a running offense last year, so his stats and game tapes don't necessarily reflect the talent this young man has.
QB Jeray Carraway was on and off with his passing, but he'll be able to get the job done. Especially considering the weapons he has. Gaymon, Dixon, RB/WR Charles Hollowell and big bodied senior Jordan Kelly all looked good today. Carraway also was very aggressive on defense, getting right up in receivers' faces and pressing them. He looks like a definite Division 1 caliber corner.
Renaissance junior LB Chris Norman is an imposing 6'2, 215 lbs. He also lines up at rush end where he possesses a great first step. He ran to the sidelines well and looks like a big timer to watch for next year.
Cass Tech's QB Thomas Gordon was also inconsistent today. He has an absolute rifle though and threw the ball into some tight spaces. He also threw a couple nice deep balls which WR Anthony Anchrum went up and got.
The deep ball was where Northwestern had success. QB Martez James had a really nice day and was simply dropping back, making quick reads and letting it fly. His excellent trio of wideouts, Anthony Hollis, Kason Dickerson and Emilio DeFoe made several highlight reel type catches.
Dickerson abused a few corners off the line, throwing them into the ground when they tried to press him. His battles with Hollowell were a little more evenly matched though.
Hollis, one of the state's top corners wasn't thrown at much, but did his damage on offense. He caught 5 deep touchdowns from James on the day. He was matched up with Cissoko several times and though it appeared as though Hollis had a step on a couple deep balls, he came away empty handed against Cass Tech's cover man.
It is always tough to judge what kind of a season teams will have from 7-7s. That said, Northwestern's passing game will be tough to contend with if they can put together an offensive line. Renaissance has a good team all around and will be one of the top teams in PSL-2. Cass Tech wants to spread teams out and use their speed, but the key there will be Gordon taking care of the football.
Renaissance 7-7 Notes and Observations
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