The Rough Diamonds Athletic Foundation will be hosting their NW College Showcase this Sunday, and with 30+ colleges confirmed for attendance. This will be a great opportunity for athletes to be coached by college coaches, and to get much needed exposure for recruiting.
RDAF’s format will see athletes get plenty of reps during the day, as they do position specific sessions to keep numbers low and all the college coaches on one field. This provides athletes with the best opportunity to be seen in the Northwest.
This article will be the first in a series of previews leading up to the event. The list below is of athletes I have seen work live. It could be in a game, 7on7, football camp or workout, but I have seen them in person and evaluated them for an extended period.
There is no order to this list, but these athletes are confirmed for the event, and have pre-registered online. To register for the event, visit RDAFShowcase.com
Omar Dyles (Bellevue, ’16 DL) – Dyles is one of the top DL in Washington for his class. He is strong, fast and uses his hands really well. Omar has a good get off and plays with a mean streak. Dyles was offered by Montana State last year, and should receive more options before all is said and done.
Josh Watson (Cascade-Everett, ’16 OL) – Earlier this month, Watson picked up four D1 offers (Wazzu, Boise State, UC Davis and Fresno State) in about a week. He has a great frame and plays with aggression. Watson has plenty of room to grow and has his best days ahead of him.
Gresch Jensen (Auburn Mountainview, ’16 QB) – Washington’s top QB without an offer is throwing the ball as well as I have seen. He is a dual-threat with good arm strength and overall athleticism. Jensen participated in the Empire Showcase last weekend in California, and was one of the top QB’s in attendance.
Blake Gregory (Skyline, ’16 QB) – Gregory is close to an offer with multiple Big Sky schools and it is only a matter of time before he gets one. He has all the tools to be a big time QB, and has greatly improved his mechanics and consistency in the last few months. Really looking forward to seeing Gregory again this weekend.
Conner Crist (Tigard, ’16 OL) – Crist is one of Oregon’s top linemen, and was a standout at the 2014 RDAF Showcase. He has D1 offers, and could add more this weekend, as a few attending schools are expressing interest. Crist plays with a mean streak, is technically sound and punches with authority.
Derek McMurray (Tigard, ’16 OL) – McMurray is a big dude (6’7″ 340) and excels in run blocking. I’ve seen his pass blocking improve over the last year or so, and am excited to see his progress this Sunday. Just size alone makes McMurray intriguing, add in good technique and athleticism, and colleges wont be able to stay away.
Gavin Crow (Kamiakin, ’16 DB) – Crow is seeing a lot of interest lately and is Washington’s fastest rising DB. Between camps and 7on7 tournaments, Crow has had a tremendous offseason. He brings speed and physical mentality, with the ability to play any position in the secondary.
Caleb Weber (Chiawana, ’17 LB) – Weber plays with an unmatched aggression. He flies around from his MLB spot, and is one of the state’s top tacklers. Caleb helped anchor the Riverhawks defense, propelling them to the state championship game for a second straight season.
Alex Diegel (Skyline, ’17 LB) – Diegel is right there with Weber in terms of the top LB’s in the 2017 class. He has a great frame, is physical in run support and very good in coverage. Diegel has great natural instincts and has a high football IQ.
Korbin Sorensen (Kamiakin, ’16 OL) – Sorensen is one of the fastest rising OL in the Northwest, and has really improved his all-around game in the last year. Sorensen plays mean and is one of the more athletic lineman in Washington.
Tiano Tialavea (O’Dea, ’16 DL) – Has there been a bigger revelation this offseason than Tialavea? At 6-4 and 345 pounds, he is next to impossible to move, but has shown a tremendous ability to rush the passer while on the camp circuit this offseason. You’ll really want to watch during the one-on-one portion.
Damani Watkins (Bothell, ’17 RB) – Watkins saw a lot of playing time last season for the state champs. He is a speedy back, does a great job reading his block and is not afraid of contact. This event could be a coming out party for Watkins.
Elijah Lugo (Graham-Kapowsin, ’16 OL) – Seems like I have been talking about Lugo a lot lately, and for good reason. Recruiting is beginning to pick up for Lugo, and this event should open more eyes to the tough, hard-nosed lineman from the south sound.
Brennan Barberich (Walla Walla, ’17 RB) – Barberich is one of the better backs in his class, and is very much under the radar. He has good speed, balance and is very tough to bring down. This will be a good measuring stick for Barberich, and a great opportunity to jumpstart recruiting as he heads into what should be a good Junior season.
Brody Weinheimer (Lynden, ’17 LB) – Weinheimer played DT last season for the Lions, but projects as a LB. He brings a physical nature to the MLB spot, but plays fast and very smart. Brody is also one of the better wrestlers in the state.