The notoriety usually goes to the offense at Byrnes but their "Strike Force" defense has produced quite a number of excellent prospects over the past decade. In their senior class this year defensive end/linebacker Noah Dawkins is one of their top prospects. With an almost superhuman blend of strength and speed Dawkins has been a force for the Rebels thus far this season. We caught up with the talented prospect with a huge upside to talk about the latest including his recruitment.
The 2015 prospect caught us up to speed on the numbers he's put up early in his senior season.
"I've got 7 sacks, 11 tackles for loss, 2 forced fumbles, 1 safety, 1 touchdown, 20 solo tackles, and 5 assists through the first 5 games."
SCPrepNation.com has seen Dawkins play the twice this season and each time we came away impressed with his ability to fly to the ball and make plays in the offensive backfield for his defense. We asked Dawkins what he feels are his biggest strengths right now on the field?
"My biggest strengths are being quicker off the ball than my opponents, being faster and stronger than most of my opponents, and not taking any plays off bringing constant pressure."
That strength has him the lone member of the 1700+ pound club due to his work in the weight room and testing. His play making abilities haven't gone unnoticed but he is definitely still flying under the radar in our opinion. Add the fact that he can blaze a 4.46 second 40 yard dash and you see why we say that.
"I've got an offer from the Citadel. They are recruiting me as a outside linebacker but I will play defensive end as well they say."
The in-state Bulldogs aren't the only school he's been hearing from either.
Thus far Dawkins says he has only visited Citadel but he plans on taking more visits once the season ends to try and see what other offers come and what schools are showing strong interest. He says there are some schools out there that he'd love to hear more from in the very near future.
Having put together a strong senior season thus far we asked Dawkins which game he'd consider his best so far?
"My best game this season was against Boiling Springs. I had 3 sacks, 3 tackles for loss, 3 solo tackles, and 2 assists. It was really memorable for me because I had fun on the field and played great in front of our fans. The best part was winning the game and getting defensive player of the week."
Subsequently after that matchup against Boiling Springs Dawkins would win the defensive player of the week award again against Spartanburg the following week.
Dawkins says he compares his game and style of play to San Francisco 49er linebacker "Patrick Willis."
Although the Rebels line him up primarily either at defensive end or defensive tackle he'll likely move to outside linebacker and still play some defensive end on the collegiate level. His explosiveness and nose for the ball are outstanding and once more coaches see his film we definitely expect more offers to come in for him. That strength we talked about has landed him some awards he informed us.
"I've been the state strength meet champion in my weight class for 2 years in a row. I have the state and school records for the broad jump too with a 10 foot 8 inch."
We'll continue to track the progress of Dawkins as he continues to help lead the Rebels defensive line with teammate Devin Dexter as they look to make another run at a state title so keep it right here with SCPrepNation.com. We'll have game highlights of Dawkins in action in another feature so be on the lookout for that as well. For now check out some of the marks Dawkins has set in the weight room and find out how to follow us on Twitter below.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS...NOAH DAWKINS
Bench press: 375 pounds
Squat: 560 pounds
Power clean: 310 pounds
Fastest 40: 4.46 seconds
Vertical: 39 inches
Broad jump: 10 feet 8 inches
Follow us on Twitter @SCPrepNation