Varsity Preps

Ben McDonald’s “Next Up”: Vol. 1

Jyron Walker

Every recruiting class has its highly-touted athletes, but there are many other very talented players who fly under the radar. Here’s a look at several players who people may not have heard of but have the potential to be difference makers at the next level:

(In order of graduating class)

2015 ATH Jyron Walker; 5-9, 170; The Dunham School (Baton Rouge, LA)

Walker is one of those athletes that can do it all. He plays quarterback, wide receiver, cornerback and safety for the Tigers and could probably direct the band at halftime. In the first eight games this season, Walker has tossed for over 1200 yards and 10 TDs and also rushed for 350 yards and three scores. His defensive stats include 20 tackles and a forced fumble which he recovered. He’s received interest from several Ivy League schools because of his 4.0 GPA and 27 on the ACT.

Twitter: @jyron_walker

2015 midseason highlights: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/665338/highlights/177674375

2015 RB Dominic Haggerty; 5-8, 160; Byrd (Shreveport, LA)

Haggerty is a three-year starter who has been one of the most consistent rushers in Louisiana. He had a breakout junior season, racking up 1145 all-purpose yards and 12 scores. He also earned the Offensive MVP award of the LHSAA Division I state championship game. This season, he’s totaled over 900 all-purpose yards so far and has etched himself in Byrd’s record books as one of the top 10 all-time scorers. He’s explosive out of the backfield and as a return man. When he finds a hole and gets through it, he doesn’t get run down often.

Twitter: @D_Haggerty_10

2015 midseason highlights: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/1375622/highlights/180132376

2015 OL Bradley Materne; 6-2, 240; Barbe (Lake Charles, LA)

When is comes to physicality and finishing blocks, Materne is the guy for the job. He may be undersized for the offensive line at the next level, but his blocking skills make him a prime candidate to line up a fullback or tight end. He’s mean and doesn’t stop until the whistle blows.

Twitter: @BradBuc_53

2015 midseason highlights: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/1537284/highlights/175677381

2015 CB Devion Young; 6-0, 183; Buckhorn (New Market, AL)

Young has an excellent combination of speed and strength that makes him a weapon at cornerback. He’s very instinctive and doesn’t let too many plays get behind him. He’s tallied 21 tackles, four pass deflections, an interception and blocked a whopping four field goals through eight weeks of the 2014 season. He’s received interest from several programs but hasn’t been offered yet.

Twitter: @EraOf10

2015 midseason highlights: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/952096/highlights/161153375

2015 DT Howard Houston; 6-2, 290; Foothill Community College (Los Altos Hills, CA)

He’s an offensive lineman’s nightmare. Not only is Houston massive, but he’s lighter on his feet than most would expect. His quickness allows him to make plenty of plays and give offensive coordinators headaches. He’s received interest from several Division I schools and could make an immediate impact with the program that lands him.

Twitter: @howard97houston

2015 midseason highlights: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/3222170/highlights/180178382

2016 QB Dan Ellington; 6-1, 170; Center Hill (Olive Branch, MS)

133-of-207 passes for 17 TDs and just one interception; 997 rushing yards and 16 scores…and those are just his numbers through eight games. The junior signal caller has drawn comparisons to Johnny Manziel and his highlight tape looks like a video game. He’s got great vision, he’s elusive and he’s an absolute playmaker. Mississippi State, Memphis, Purdue and Louisiana-Lafayette have expressed interest in Ellington.

Twitter: @Dan_CH14

2015 midseason highlights: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/1586200/highlights/191420383

2016 TE Alexander Marshall; 6-7, 220; Andover (Andover, MA)

He can catch, he can block, oh, and he’s also 6-7. This giant junior still has plenty of growing left to do, which is a large part of why big schools like Notre Dame and Penn State have an eye on him. He could play several positions in college depending on his size. If he stays on the leaner side, he’ll likely stay at tight end, but if he puts on weight, he could possibly line up at offensive tackle.

Twitter: @A_marshall80

2015 midseason highlights: http://www.hudl.com/athlete/3614396/alex-marshall

 

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