Adidas Invitational: Lineman Recap

J.C. Hassenauer (Brian King photo)

The big guys got after it, providing strong competition during the 1-1s. Of the MVPs, there were some as young as 8th grade, and others going into their senior year. Here is who stood out.

Offensive Line MVPs (Chosen by Coaches

The offensive line was a good group. Of the ten MVPs chosen, despite some other very strong performances, we felt East Ridge (Minn.) center prospect J.C. Hassenauer had the best day. Just as he did at the Army Combine, he stonewalled several guys, shows good strength, excellent technique and leverage, and a tenacious approach.

Noah Domingue came down from Canada and did not make it a wasted trip. He's a guard, possibly center in college. He's a mauler with great strength. He's a pitbull who plays hard. There were guys there that were bigger and faster, but no one was as physical.

A very nice surprise was Indianapolis (Ind.) Heritage Christian's Ethan McKenzie. He did very well in 1-1s. He has solid footwork, improved technique and consistently won his battles. He's maybe a little bit of a tackle-guard tweener, but I see him being more of an interior prospect. Either way, he helped himself.

Alma (Mich.) junior Curtis Doyle is a strong, thick legged kid who, like McKenzie, could be a tackle or a guard. I see him as a right tackle who could move inside as well. He has a Central Michigan offer and lots of other programs looking his way.

Fellow Michigan product Chukwuma Okorafor from Southfield is a junior with a nice frame, long arms and good athleticism. He still has technical work to do, but had a nice day and showed the upside that has earned him a couple of offers.

Chanhassen (Minn.) junior Frank Ragnow admitted to me that he had not done some of the drills and had never done lineman 1-1s like what he did on Sunday. Despite that, he performed well, and won the majority of his reps. He's still learning, but has a great frame and is a strong kid.

Muskegon (Mich.) junior Malik King is another guy who has played tackle, but projects to guard in college. He's a hard working kid who keeps improving. For a kid who is not asked to pass set very much in high school, he does well with that in these situations. He's about to receive his first couple of offers.

The sleeper of the group may be Christian Spencer of Glenville, who was not well known coming in, but had a nice day and was chosen for the Best of the Best. At 6'3, 250-lbs, he may project at center.

Then there are the young pups. South Lake (Mich.) sophomore Kyonta Stallworth already has a UCLA offer and backed it up with his performance on Sunday. He's strong in the lower body for a young kid and I liked his confidence and intensity. He did not back down from anybody. Emani Mason is an 8th grader who may play as a freshman at East English Village Prep. He's 6'2, 250-lbs already and is light on his feet.

Defensive Line MVPs (Chosen by Coaches

There were a lot of young guys who did well, but the rising seniors (2014 class) who earned MVP honors were Nathan Braster (Fort Wayne South Side), Jake Khoury (Traverse City St. Francis), Jari Dada (Fort Wayne North Side), Kenny Finley (Muskegon), Chris Okoye (Detroit Catholic Central), and Lorenzo Burgess (Cleveland Glenville).

Braster is a long, athletic 6'5, 235-lb kid who just received his first offer from Ball State. He must continue to get stronger and develop as a pass rusher, but his physical tools and upside are all there.

The 6'3, 280-lb Khoury is a wrestler who uses his hands well and has good quickness off the ball. He still is without an offer but has a lot of schools looking his way. He had a good showing in 1-1s. Fellow Michigan defensive tackle Okoye is big and powerful. He bull rushed through everybody. I'd like to see him develop his technique and rush moves, but he has can't teach size.

Dada has done well at every event he has been to. The biggest thing for him is that he's 6'1, 280-lbs and not as big as some of the other guys on the list, but he will continue to prove himself at camps this summer.

Finley, who holds a handful of MAC offers is very quick and aggressive. The same tools that made him so disruptive during the Big Reds' run this year made him tough for offensive linemen to block at Sunday's event.

Burgess is a sleeper from Glenville, who, at 6'5, 300-lbs, is going to draw more looks as schools have a chance to see him this summer.

Jashon Cornell, one of the Midwest's top sophomores, did not disappoint. He's long, athletic and explosive. He may be a stand up rush LB in college or grow into a full defensive end, but either way, the Cretin Derham Hall (Minn.) product has great tools.

Joshua Alabi is a fellow sophomore with several offers. He has a big frame at 6'5, 255-lbs and did well in 1-1s. We'll see what position he grows into, but you can't teach that size.

Two freshmen made a big impact. Muskegon (Mich.) Mona Shores defensive end Chris Daniels is already 6'4, 240-lbs and is a power lifter. He's well ahead of the game physically and looks like he will develop into a big time guy. Cretin Derham Hall's Jojo Garcia is powerful for a young guy. He bowled over a couple of older linemen and also has the look of a future big timer.

Other Offensive Linemen

Berrien Springs (Mich.) junior Nick Padla has a nice frame. He still has to add some weight and strength, but he moved well and while he didn't get a ton of 1-1 reps, he won the ones we saw him take. He has an Akron offer.

Portage Central (Mich.) Hunter Lassitter is a high school tight end still learning to play offensive line. In fact, he told us today was the first time he did anything for offensive line. As expected, he was athletic, and can move his feet, but just needs to keep working on technique and getting comfortable with the position.

Waterford (Mich.) Our Lady of the Lakes junior Brandon Keen has a big 6'6 frame and good flexibility. He needs to get strong and keep working on pass pro, but he has some tools.

Missouri product Tanner Hageman projects as an interior guy and had a nice day. Lapeer East (Mich.) sophomore Anthony Herbert went up against some of the best defensive linemen at the camp and did well. He played mostly tackle, but I could see him sliding inside at the next level depending on how he continues to grow.

Other Defensive Linemen

Southfield (Mich.) junior Lawrence Marshall has quite a collection of major offers. He's very long and athletic. He needs to still get stronger. Big, physical offensive linemen had success when they got their hands on him, but his feet and quickness are very impressive.

Saginaw (Mich.) freshman Lawrence Gordon is 6'5, 233-lbs already with a lot of upside. Definitely a name to remember for the future.

South Lake (Mich.) junior Caldin Rogers is long and athletic, but skinny still. Minneapolis Washburn's Clayton Burton has a nice frame. He was hurt all of last year, but is going to draw some looks on the camp circuit this summer.

Kenowa Hills (Mich.) junior Zach Evans moved inside a couple times and won some reps. It will be interesting to see how he grows and develops into a position. He may actually get big enough to play tackle in college, but he is an end right now.

Detroit Cass Tech's duo of Keith Jones and Chris McDaniel made it tough on offensive tackles with their quickness. Jones rushed mostly from a two-point. He has a stocky body and he's another who it will be interesting to see how his body grows and whether he'll put his hand down in college. He is currently a sophomore. McDaniel is not real big, but very quick and a good pass rusher. Another Cass product, Braxton Willis, who just transferred from Loyola, had a nice showing. The 6'2, 260-lb junior can project to guard or defensive tackle.

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