Forty-two players from Polk County made their way to Southeastern University to represent their home county on Sunday, and we’ve found ten players that deserve some instantaneous credit for their effort and skill-sets. The observations have JUST begun, so you can expect coverage to expand greatly beyond these ballers over the coming weeks, but these young men certainly caught our attention and we’d like to show some love to start.
Winter Haven brought several prospects to the event and three of those young men did not disappoint. The county’s leading passer, William Tate was spot-on the vast majority of the day and showcased his accuracy about as good as anyone in the position group while LB Brandon Lane (2017) was insanely active and effective in the linebackers group. Lane was listed as 5-10/190 last season, but has shown he’s been in the weight room in a serious manner this offseason. Wide receiver Kobie Leonard (2018) had himself a nice afternoon and is an intriguing prospect with his frame at 6-feet 160-plus pounds and could be an effective target for Tate this fall for sure.
Kathleen had a pair of prospects–one offensive, another defensive–that showed up and were effective throughout the day. Defensive end Jaaron Jackson is just a member of the class of 2018, but at 6-3/225 and recently offered by FAU–this young man has unlimited potential at the position and showed some of that potential to us during drills. Wide receiver Reggie Brown (2018) is another rising junior that’s going to make some noise for the Red Devils this season and has all the tools to become a very solid contributor at the next level.
Lake Wales’ Drew Hayes is an intriguing prospect at the tight end position checking in at 6-4/190-plus and possessing some raw-yet-exciting skills with his frame. Hayes had himself a very nice day working with arguably one of the deepest groups in the entire camp and could definitely work himself into a nice prospect at the position. Tenoroc TE Garrett Steele (2018) is one of those several rising juniors that made splashes across the camp and at 6-3/210 used his frame nicely working against the linebackers for a productive work session.
Fort Meade’s Stephon Fulse Jr (2017) has a very nice foundational frame (5-11/190) for running back and looks the part too with his feet and his eyes–a part that’s extremely important for the Miners as they need someone to replace the massive contributions that Tyler King–Polk County’s leading rusher–made. Ridge Community’s Kadarius Verneuil was flying around the drills and is going to eventually make some coaching staff very happy at the next level as either an outside linebacker or safety with his frame, speed and his ability to hit-and-drop pretty much everything he sees in front of him.
Auburndale’s Keandre “KJ” Jenkins was out there running with the tight ends in addition to being a solid linebacker during the season for the Bloodhounds. Jenkins has a tailor-made frame well over six-feet and two-hundred pounds to make smaller defenders wish they hadn’t drawn him in coverage and with a little more work at the route-running aspect of his game could be fantastic prospect in terms of versatility on either side of the ball.
We should mention that Jenkins–along with the rest of his A-Dale teammates in attendance yesterday–were playing and competing with heavy hearts. Their Head Coach Billy Deeds is currently undergoing treatment in Texas for Cancer and when asked the young man spoke in terms that one would only use for their own father. We want to take this opportunity to wish Deeds and his family–both Auburndale and personal–all of the prayers and well-wishes we can possibly send their way as he fights this horrific disease. We expect coach to come back better-than-ever once he’s kicked this affliction’ butt. Get well and Godspeed, coach. We all miss you.