Last year was the first EPT Skills Showcase for Elite Position Training founder Ramon Robinson and it was so highly successful that we're seeing a trend created because of it. Move forward almost a year later and Robinson and his staff are back for year two of the event. Last year it was held at Spartanburg High School but this year it will be held at Newberry College on May 15th to make it readily accessible to players across the state of South Carolina by being more centrally located. Again this event is INVITATION ONLY, Robinson and his staff have already started the process of sending out invitations to the very best high school prospects in the state and will continue to do so in the coming weeks.
We sat down with Robinson to talk about some new additions to the showcase this year as well as some of the top talent already committed to the event. By being selective and inviting the best players Robinson levels the playing field and gives analysts such as myself an opportunity to not to have to weed through hundreds of prospects but to be able to properly evaluate top talent against other similar talents. That vision will now see offensive and defensive linemen added to the mix this year and in fact it may be the most talent laden of the early commitments to the event this year so far. Below we take a look at some of the top prospects who have already committed to the Showcase on May 15th.
While there will be plenty of new faces at this year's event there will be prospects who trained and competed last year as well who are hungry to return to the event many said was their very favorite. Headlining the list of returning players is 2017 wide receiver OrTre Smith of Wando High School, Smith is a 4-star on Scout and has picked up a who's who of high major scholarship offers already. Another 2017 receiver slated to return is Summerville wideout Cam Burnette who is one of the most underrated prospects in his class but his smoothness and ability will see him add some scholarship offers fairly soon we're certain of. 2018 Byrnes wide receiver Demarcus Gregory is also set to return and he has picked up an ACC offer already and is looking to add plenty more offers during the next two seasons. Gregory played in the shadow of a pair of Shrine Bowlers but he caught nearly everything thrown in his direction for the Rebels. Another sleeper returning is 2017 Woodruff wideout Keith Pearson who is a dynamic slot receiver who we are hoping will get the looks he deserves because he was named one of the top receivers at last year's event and went on to a monstrous season for his team.
Big-time 2017 Union County wide receiver Shi Smith has already committed to the event and he'll be one to watch as he's landed a who's who list of offers just like OrTre Smith. Other prospects to watch are 2017 James Island wideout Jordan McDaniel who made plenty of noise for his team in the LowCountry last season as well as 2017 Fort Dorchester receiver Adonicas Sanders who helped his team win the state championship this past season. 2017 Austin Connor of Dutch Fork who has multiple offers is also slated to compete in this year's showcase. 2017 athlete Malik Williams of Chester High school is also signed up to compete and perform against the state's best.
Defensive back is another position that'll be talented and deep once again. EPT defensive backs coach ChaChi Sullivan has a great crop of talent that he works with and it's a long list of prospects with multiple offers already. Heading the way is 2017 Lake Marion safety Davondre Robinson who holds offers from some of college football's top schools already. Fast rising upstarts like Airport cornerback Kerryon Richardson and South Aiken's Tancey Richardson are also committed to competing. Both prospects have picked up multiple early offers and are quickly becoming names college coaches are familiarizing themselves with. Another star slated to be in Newberry is 2018 South Pointe S/ATH Derion Kendrick who has already picked up over a dozen offers and he'll be one of the prospects we'll key our evaluations on. 2018 Greer CB/ATH Quavian White may be the sleeper coaches need to evaluate soon because like Kendrick, he's an amazing athlete with absurd footwork and skill. He's got heavy interest early on but is looking for his first offer which we feel will come pretty soon with two more seasons to play.
As always quarterback is another talent laden position with EPT founder and quarterback coach Ramon Robinson guiding a strong group. Returning again this year is 2017 Wren quarterback Jay Urich who has picked up some nice offers since last year and is very high on the radar of a number of ACC and SEC schools currently. 2017 Ben Lippen quarterback Patrick McClure is also signed up and set to compete. As no surprise to Robinson 2019 prospects Alex Meredith of T.L. Hanna and Keegan Halloran of Woodruff made huge contributions playing as freshmen on the varsity level. As two of the brightest quarterback stars in the 2019 class in the region both youngsters return to compete and showcase their talents with and against the state's very best. A newcomer to the event this year is 2017 Belton Honea Path QB Kameron Burton who already has early interest from regional schools. 2018 quarterbacks Dakereon Joyner of Fort Dorchester will attend but will not participate due to surgery. Also 2018 Daniel High quarterback Ben Batson is another young superstar who is set to perform after securing a top showing at last year's showcase.
Leading the way for a strong group of defensive linemen is 2017 Tre Lawson of North Augusta who is the #1 ranked defensive end in the state and has offers from numerous high majors already. He'll be joined by Chrishawn Wilson of Wilson High School who's emerged as a prospect to watch at 6'6 240 pounds. A strong contingent of underclassmen headed by 2018 T.L. Hanna DT Stephon Wynn and 2019 DE teammate Zacch Pickens who have hauled in a bevy of high major offers in the past month making them the hottest teammates in the state currently. Add 2018 Lewisville DT Josh Belk to the mix and you have a group of linemen who can stand up against any combination of 5 in the country already. More invitations have already been sent out or are already in the works such as to the state's top 2017 prospect DE Logan Rudolph of Northwestern and 2018's top top prospect Xavier Thomas of Wilson High School, should both accept the invitation this group will be one that folks will be watching with great intensity.
Linebackers will be lead by 2017 Ridge View LB Damani Staley and 2018 Daniel LB Jake Venables, Staley is already committed to South Carolina and Venables holds some nice offers including one to nearby Clemson where his father is the defensive coordinator. Another top linebacker prospect who recently received an invitation is Ashley Ridge LB Malik Middleton who has been on the radar of some ACC schools early on and picked up plenty of regional interest along the way.
This year's crop will feature some youngsters who opened eyes last year the event but who also made big strides on the field for their respective teams. 2018 McCormick RB Mataeo Durant has emerged as a prospect with such high upside SEC and ACC schools are all already taking a long hard look at the prolific rusher from the Augusta area. Last year 2017 Seneca RB Jacory Benson shared carries but still put up impressive numbers for a strong Bobcats squad and his speed continues to be just one of his top gifts. He returns looking to help cement his name as one of the top 2017 guys heading into next season.
2017 West Ashley RB Dexter Freeman surpassed 2,000 rushing yards last season and he runs hard and is already drawing plenty of interest as well. This will be his first time competing at EPT but considering his stats we expect he'll show well and learn a lot by training with and competing against the state's top prospects.
All campers will receive Adidas shorts and shirt. Each camper is covered with full medical insurance provided by the camp should any injuries take place and trainers and doctors will be on hand to help attend any camper in need of attention.
There are some slots still available at some positions but your film must be sent and evaluated first to see if an invitation will be sent. Send your film to firstname.lastname@example.org or SCPrepNation@gmail.com.
Just because you have received an invitation you still must register online and pay in advance to secure your slot. There are approximately two more weeks left to register and pay before registration closes. If you haven't secured your slot we will extend more invitations to the next prospect ready to showcase their talents against the state's best!
A strong contingent of coaches with NFL and high major college level experience has already been assembled and we will be announcing a list of those coaches this weekend...stay tuned!null