I've sat on the sidelines watching the Byrnes Rebels quite a few times over the past few seasons and #58 seemed to make just as many big plays as some of the prized Rebel defenders. Various fellow recruiting analysts and college coaches who've given us a buzz all end up asking about "the #58 kid."
Sometimes players are lost in the mix, stuck in the shadow of other great players, or just overlooked by upperclassmen on their team. For a while you could say Everett Dawkins or "the #58 kid" as I've heard over and over fell into that category, make it a short while. The Byrnes Rebels have boasted many top prospects over the past several years and with big time defensive players like DB Prince Miller , LB Stanley Hunter, and LB Chad Diehl getting big time publicity day in and day out. It seemed people often overlooked the big guy in the trenches who always seems to be in the backfield causing a ruckus for opposing teams. Set to embark on his senior season Everett Dawkins is now the leader of the Byrnes defense along with CB Cartier Rice.
SCPrepNation.com caught up with Dawkins recently for an update on just how his recruitment has unfolded to this point.
Dawkins recited his stats from his junior season first, "Last year I had 46 solo tackles, 56 assists, 3 sacks, and 18 tackles for loss." The thing that the Dawkins neglected to mention is that while teams often double teamed Hunter and Diehl early on it would be Dawkins who'd command a great deal of double teams from the opposition before it was said and done.
Currently the Rebels are in full swing with their offseason weightlifting and speed training workouts. Dawkins ranks high on the pecking order amongst the current players on the team. We asked him where his numbers were exactly at this point in the weight room.
"I can bench 300 pounds and squat 500. We haven't maxed out with our conditioning program yet so more than likely those numbers will get better soon." Dawkins has played various positions such as nose guard, defensive tackle, and defensive end at Byrnes. One area that some analysts have seen a need for improvement from Dawkins is his speed and he touched on the subject for a moment. "Well we had the county strength not too long ago and I ran a 4.68 in the 40. I felt like I could've run faster if I had spikes on though."
Currently Dawkins says he stands 6'3 and is fluctuating between 240 and 245 pounds. Given his size, strength, and speed it's easy to see why so many schools are recruiting him so heavily. Having those assets on his side is beneficial but where Dawkins separates himself from the majority of other defensive ends/tackles out there is his tremendous technique.
"Right now I'm really working hard on working through double teams. As far as one on one goes I think I have it down pretty well. It's pretty hard for one person to block me because I'm so quick. We're working really hard on beating double teams and hopefully that will be better by the time Spring ball gets here."
Asked about his recruitment Dawkins says things have picked up somewhat as of late. "I'm hearing from a lot of schools. I'd have to say Wake Forest, Maryland, Clemson, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia are some of the ones I hear from the most. I've got lots of mail from over 20 or more other big schools but those are the ones I hear the most from. I have offers from Wake Forest and Maryland."
There is a leader for Dawkins at this point too. "I'm pretty close with the folks at Wake Forest." It's still too early Dawkins says as for making a final decision. When asked if he were given a chance to go to any three schools in the country he responded, "Tennessee, Florida, and South Carolina. I may make a decision by the middle of football season but I know I'll be ready at least by December towards the end of football season."
"What I'm looking for in a college will depend on the atmosphere for the football program, being able to get a very good education, and having a strong coaching staff."
Expect more schools to get involved with Dawkins and his number of offers to increase. Some people see this as a "down year" for the Byrnes Rebels but you can be rest assured that "the #58 kid" will be making a ton of plays for the Rebel defense once again. Everett Dawkins wouldn't have it any other way.
We will have more updates on Everett Dawkins during the Summer and throughout his senior season so stay tuned.
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