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July 20, 2005

Talent heads to Hoover

Some say that the month of July is the slowest time of the year in terms of the recruiting process. The May evaluation period is over, camps are done and practice hasn't started yet. That doesn't mean there isn't plenty going on though, as 7-on-7 tournaments across the country take center stage and one of the nation's top tournaments will be taking place in Hoover, Ala. this weekend.

The headliner of the 16-team tournament is Springdale (Ark.), which will be bringing the nation's top quarterback, Mitch Mustain to town, as well as Rivals250 wide receiver Damian Williams. Also attending the tournament for the Bulldogs will be tight end Ben Cleveland who has nearly one dozen offers and wide receiver Andrew Norman, who boasts offers from Arkansas, Kansas, Louisville and Michigan State.

Mustain will not be the only top-notch quarterback in attendance as Leesburg (Ga.) Lee County quarterback D'Vontrey Richardson will be taking part in the tournament as well. Wide receiver Lavelle Parker, who is a Southern Miss commitment, will also be on hand to help lead Lee County as the tournament's only representative from the Peach State.

Duncan (S.C.) Byrnes is one of the top programs in the South and the Rebels have already won several 7-on-7 tournaments around the Southeast this summer. Class of 2007 quarterback Will Korn already has five scholarship offers and will be on hand to help lead the Rebels. Cornerback Prince Miller had his coming out party at this same tournament one year ago and he will try and shut down some of the magnificent receivers on hand. Miller has an impressive list of offers, but recently narrowed his list to Florida State, Georgia and Tennessee.

Perhaps the top wide receiver prospect at the tournament is a guy that is not on the radar screen of many yet. That's because Belle Glade (Fla.) Glades Central prospect Deonte Thompson is a member of the class of 2007. Thompson already has five scholarship offers in hand and many are projecting him as a possible top five player in the Sunshine State for the class of 2007. Thompson's teammate Jeremy Terry will be one of the top safeties at the tournament. He is ranked as the No. 52 player in Florida and has picked up offers from Ole Miss and NC State already. Glades Central quarterback Brandon Clentscale, cornerback Anthony Allen and athlete Simon Putnam are also drawing interest.

Though the tournament may be called the "Southeast Select 7-on-7," it isn't just for schools from the South. Pittsburgh (Pa.) Thomas Jefferson will make the trek down where Pittsburgh commit Nate Nix will be on hand displaying his skills as a tight end and linebacker. Richmond (Va.) Huguenot will also be on hand, where Rivals.com will get a first hand look at tight end/defensive end Dedrick Epps, as well as athlete Omar Kizzie.

Winnsboro (SC) Fairfield Central will also make the trip to the Birmingham suburb to take part in the tournament. Safety Darius Gaither has offers from the likes of Auburn, Clemson, Maryland, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wake Forest and others and is ranked as the No. 8 player in the Palmetto State. Gaither is coming off an ACL tear from his junior campaign and this will be Rivals.com first look at Gaither in action.

Rivals250 selection, tight end Jonathan Massey will get a chance to strut his stuff as his Gautier, Miss. team will be the lone team representing the Magnolia State. Massey has offers from Clemson, Mississippi State, LSU, Ole Miss, Southern Miss and Vanderbilt and is ranked as the No. 8 player in the state of Mississippi.

Other prospects in attendance will are Niceville, Fla. running back Devon Freeman, quarterback John Paul Fraities, wide receiver John Houston Whiddon, Shreveport (La.) Captain Shreve quarterback Andrew Calantone, wide receiver Lance West and linebacker Forest Ragar and Memphis (Tenn.) University cornerback Logan Welch.


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