2008 Under Armour/Scout.com Combine
CB Byron Best
Byron went out and let his numbers do the talking. He easily passes the look test. He's added some great mass in his upper body and colleges will soon be heading to Greenwood not only to see his high profile 2009 teammates (Sam Montgomery and D.J. Swearinger). He posted the fastest 40 time of the event at 4.37 seconds. (The turf was very slow and times were high for most in attendance so the speed of his time shows exactly how explosive he is considering the slow surface.) Byron also tested well in other testing stations He fared well in defensive back drills and drew the praise of the Scout.com staff with his abilities.
WR/S Marlin Butler
Butler has all the tools. Good size and super athleticism. There are still nuances of his game that he needs work on but he's working hard. He's only been playing football a year so there's tremendous upside to his game as he continues to learn. He posted a 38 inch vertical verifying his sick leaping ability. He was a bit tentative it seemed being his first combine but he still put up some strong numbers. He also posted one of the faster 40 times of the day with a 4.53 seconds. During one on one drills he made a few dazzling catches that had fans, coaches, and players all going crazy. He's still green but the potential is too good to ignore. He'll continue to get stronger and faster with a new weight training program in place now.
DE/LB Jamal Mtshali
Richland Northeast High
Okay here's the deal. Mtshali may not get to finish playing football at Richland Northeast due to an incident two years ago. Despite things he's remained positive and turned his focus to becoming a better person as a whole and really turned it up in the weight room. The results stood out on Saturday. Mtshali wasn't happy with his time in the 40 as he normally posts in the 4.6 range but he came up with a 4.71 on the slow surface. Where he stood out was on the vertical testing. We were there when his leap stunned everyone at the station and the fans nearby. In one explosive leap he measured a 43.5 inch jump. He came back again to try his luck and swatted the entire rack and extending above it in fact. Our guess at it would have put him at 47 inches or so if there had been pegs to touch. Nevertheless it was the highest vertical of the combine. He's at DE at RNE but we think he'd be better suited as a LB on the next level. As he awaits a ruling from the SCHSL he may have to start looking at prep schools to finish a promising career. Regardless he's a testing wonder, he was a bit out of his element with the linebackers trying to cover running backs but he's never played the position before.
RB Jarrett Neely
Neely continues to show why we've labeled him "Mr. Versatility". He's a hard cover for most defenders and he tested well in Charlotte. He's still a little thin for our liking and needs to add some more muscle but he's got tremendous quickness, footwork, and some of the best hands regardless of position. He ran a 4.56 second 40 time, posted a 41.5 inch vertical, 7.8 second L-drill, and a 4.6 second shuttle time. He told us it was the first time he'd ever laid eyes on the L-drill so we can understand his time for it being new. Scout and Under Armour staffers continued to query me about him as he went through testing drills. His stock has been on the way up and it appears he will continue to climb the rankings here in the state and region.
WR/TE Desmond Parks
Parks made a statement on Saturday. He ran well posting a 4.62 on the slow surface and caught most everything thrown his way. He did well in one on ones going up against some of the top defensive backs in the Carolinas. He even took it to the nation's #2 rated safety Devonte Holloman during one matchup. He's going to get his offers soon if you know what we know. Updates on those offers will be forthcoming very soon.