OhioPrepScene.com proudly brings you the third edition of the 'Players to Watch' series. This edition will highlight on some of the top wide receivers in the Buckeye State for the upcoming football season.
Ohio has some tremendous
Wideouts this year. Records could
fall this year and Ohio will boast
some of the most talented and sought after receivers in the country.
Our first featured player came out of nowhere last season and made a nice
name for himself. Nicknamed "Super
Mario" by many newspapers last season, Warren Harding junior-to-be Mario
Manningham is one of the best receivers in
Ohio regardless of class. He broke onto the scene last season when
the standout scored four times against
Massillon. He returned a kickoff, a punt and caught
two TDs to help seal the victory.
Mario was a big reason his Raiders were State Runnerup last season. Manningham isn't the biggest of
receivers (5'11 170), but has great explosiveness and speed. He is a threat at any position on the
field and can turn a game around in one play. He was recently offered a scholarship by
The Ohio State University.
Manningham will be one of the most hyped receivers this season, keep his
name in mind.
The consensus pick for the top WR in the
State this season is Senior Fred
Davis of Toledo
Davis, at first site, is
quite intimidating to defensive backs.
He stands a towering 6'4 and weighs in around 215 pounds. He consistently runs in the 4.5 forty
range and has great game speed. In
film, he shows his capability by going up over defenders to haul in passes. He took handoffs around the corner and
beat everyone to the goal line.
Last season he played WR, RB and DB. As a wideout, he hauled in over 50
passes for 700 yards and also rushed for 1,100 from the backfield. He was responsible for scoring 26
TDs. While WR is where people want
him most, he performs quite well in the secondary as well. He recorded 80 tackles and 2
interceptions last season.
Davis will be one of many
Ohioans sharing the national spotlight next season.
While the Buckeyes will hope to land
Davis, they have already nabbed one
top receiver out of Ohio. Miles Williams of Youngstown-Austintown
Fitch verballed to the Bucks a few months ago. Since then, his hype has grown on a
daily basis. Williams looked very
impressive on film. The senior
wideout shows great playmaking ability.
He can take a 10 yard crossing pattern the distance, he can go over top
and pull in a bad pass, and he can come up from his DB position and rock an
opposing ball carrier. Williams is
a bigger receiver than most at 6'3 210, and is quite quick for his size
(4.46). The Buckeyes look to have
landed a very solid prospect in Mr. Williams.
This year's crop of receivers seems to be dominated with big guys. Davis (6'4 215), Williams (6'3 210), and
Trumaine Smith (6'3 195) are just a few of them. Smith, a senior out of
Warrensville Heights, is seeing his
stock rise throughout the recruiting season. Smith caught less than 20 passes last
season, but that isn't stopping schools like
Iowa and other Big 10 schools from
going after him hard. Trumaine is
one of the fastest guys in Ohio
and won numerous 100 meter events at track meets.
While on the big receiver topic, Romunn Grigsby cannot be
left out. The 6'4 senior from
Northmont high school in Clayton is getting some major attention. He attended junior day at OSU and said
State, UCLA and
Iowa have been contacting him the
most. Romunn caught nearly 50
passes for over 800 yards and 11 TDs last season for Northmont.
Another receiver who plays his ball close to Grigsby is Ryan Patrick of
Dayton Chaminade-Julienne. Patrick
caught 40+ balls from Anthony Turner for over 700 yards. He isn't the tallest guy in the world
(5'10 170), but he has lightning quick feet and great hands. On some highlights of Dayton CJ games,
Patrick showed why he is one of the top threats in the
Valley. The senior took short 10 yard passes,
made 2-3 guys miss and eventually scored.
Watch out for Patrick next year, he should emerge as a great receiver
with some major hype.
Last season, Kenton QB Ben Mauk rewrote the history books. He set just about every QB record that
existed. Along the way, some of his
receivers racked up some stats.
Junior-to-be Tommy Pettit was one of those receivers. In his first two seasons, he's already
broken the records for single season and career receiving yards, single season
touchdowns, and he's 2 off from the career receiving touchdowns. The speedy 200 pound Kenton Wildcat
often blows right by defenders downfield catching a 40-50 yard pass for a quick
six. Pettit could possibly see some
more time in the backfield as a RB this season. The loss of Ben Mauk could lead to a 4
wide one back set from the former 5 wide no huddle.
Heights has a gem of a receiver in Michael Bell.
Bell is one of the state's
top two way players (WR/DB). He is
a very physical receiver who has some great speed. On film,
Bell showed no fear in going across
the middle. One play he would beat
a defender to the outside, the next play he would run one over. He displayed some excellent
explosiveness on punt returns.
Whoever lands this Grade A Receiver will get a steal.
Some Other Top
Jamal Akbar J
Thanks for reading and keep checking back for more....