LSU Tigers: Arizona State Sun Devils

BRADENTON, Fla. — There were as many as 10 games going on at the same time at the IMG 7v7 National Championship over the weekend, and at times it was difficult to determine just who the top performers were. After all, there were more than 30 prospects in the ESPN 300 who participated. Here's a closer look at several seniors who stood out during the two-day event.

ATH Deon Cain
Committed to Clemson
ESPN 300 rank: 25
Cain helped lead his team, Unsigned Preps from Tampa, to the championship game with several acrobatic catches. The trio of Cain, Ray Ray McCloud III and junior-to-be wide receiver Nate Craig proved to be too much for teams to handle. Cain is solidly committed to Clemson and said he is not considering any other schools at this time.
S Derwin James
Committed to Florida State
ESPN 300 rank: 26
James is known for his physical play, but he showed he is more than just a big hitter. James broke up several passes and just always seemed to be around the ball. Like Cain, he is solid with his commitment, but in this case to the Seminoles.
CB Iman Marshall
Uncommitted
ESPN 300 rank: 20
Marshall played wide receiver and defensive back for his team, B2G, and excelled at both. The four-star prospect teamed with another ESPN 300 receiver, Trent Irwin, to form a dangerous pass-catching combo. Marshall is still narrowing his choices but knows he will take visits in the fall to Florida State and Notre Dame.

Notebook: IMG 7v7 Championship 

June, 23, 2014
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BRADENTON, Fla. -- The IMG 7v7 National Championship held at IMG Academy over the weekend featured some of the top 7-on-7 teams from all over the country and even a few teams from Canada. The event, which included 12 prospects ranked in the top 50 of the ESPN 300, showcased some of the best talent you will find in a single tournament. Led by Alabama verbal commits Calvin Ridley and Shawn Burgess-Becker, the Florida Fire from South Florida defeated Tampa’s Unsigned Preps 20-18 in the championship game to take home the title.

Quarterbacks shine

There were several high-profile quarterbacks in attendance, and they lived up to the hype for the most part. Deondre Francois, who recently transferred to IMG Academy, made numerous impressive throws. The 6-foot-2, 188-pound signal-caller has a top three of Oregon, Auburn and Florida State and is planning to make his decision at the end of July.


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States of strength: Texas RBs 

May, 15, 2014
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When it comes to running backs, the state of Texas is loaded. Ten running backs represent the Lone Star State in the ESPN 300. Of those 10, five are committed. A total of seven running backs in the state have reported FBS commitments.

ESPN 300 RBs from the state:

No. 50 Ronald Jones II: Ranked the nation’s No. 3 running back, Jones is an explosive, game-changing back who -- as scary as it might sound -- will only get better. Jones committed to Oklahoma State on April 6 and finished his junior season with more than 2,400 rushing yards and 39 touchdowns.


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CLIFTON, Va. -- Five-star defensive tackle Tim Settle, No. 10 in the ESPN 300, will not be making an early commitment, that much has been known from the start. What is also known about Settle is that he intends to go through the entire process and take all five of his official visits.

What wasn’t known is that Settle has started to think about what schools will make the cut.

“I’m going to trim it down in August to 14,” said Settle, who earned an invitation to The Opening Saturday after a stellar performance at the Nike Football Training Camp at Centreville High School in Clifton, Va. “The reason I’m going to trim it down in August is two-a-days and getting ready for the season. I don’t want a lot of pressure on me. I just want to play and have fun my senior season.


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Top position classes: WR 

February, 12, 2014
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With national signing day in the books, RecruitingNation is looking at the top position classes. For the full series, click here.

Nationally (and SEC)
While the Baylor Bears had an exceptional wide receiver class, the nod here goes to LSU. Not only did the Tigers sign the nation's No. 1 receiver in Malachi Dupre (River Ridge, La./John Curtis Christian), but also the No. 3 ranked receiver in Trey Quinn (Lake Charles, La./Barbe) and ESPN 300 No. 271 D.J. Chark (Alexandria, La./Alexandria Senior) and No. 283 Tony Upchurch (Pearland, Texas/Dawson). In Dupre, LSU snagged the No. 17 prospect overall on signing day. He has a tall, lengthy frame with a near ideal size-and-speed combination and elite high-point ball skills. Quinn will enter LSU as an advanced route-runner with separation skills and the ability to pluck the ball outside of the framework of his body. Chark brings initial quickness and the vertical speed to take the top off a defense, and Upchurch is a big body who continues to add bulk and could eventually transition to a flex type of position.

The Tigers had the nation’s best wide receiver class; here’s which schools had the best in each of the remaining power conferences:


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Weekend recruiting wrap: SEC 

January, 20, 2014
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The dead period is over, and this was the first of three official visit weekends remaining before national signing day on Feb. 5. Several top prospects visited SEC schools, there were some commits, and there will be a few announcements this week. Here’s a closer look at the latest recruiting news from around the SEC:

Biggest commits: Georgia is already feeling the effects of new defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt on the recruiting trail. The Bulldogs were able to land two ESPN Junior 300 commitments, Rico McGraw (Nashville, Tenn./The Ensworth School) and Terry Godwin (Hogansville, Ga./Callaway), over the weekend.


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Early Offer: Dead period ends 

January, 17, 2014
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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today’s offerings: The extended dead period kept coaches from making face-to-face contact with recruits for more than a month, but Thursday they were on the road again; new Texas coach Charlie Strong used the end of the dead period to visit with Edwin Freeman and he was rewarded with a commitment; and an LSU commit is looking hard at Oklahoma and Arizona State.


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Four-star DT decommits from Texas 

January, 7, 2014
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Many felt it was only a matter of time for Trey Lealaimatafao (San Antonio/Warren).

No Mack Brown? Not the biggest blow, but a blow nonetheless. No position coach, however? Big problem -- the last straw, even.

With new head coach Charlie Strong set to bring in members of his own staff, defensive tackles coach Bo Davis opted to accept a position coaching defensive linemen at USC. No Davis at Texas next season was enough to force Lealaimatafao, a four-star defensive tackle and U.S. Army All-American, to officially decommit on Tuesday and explore his other options.


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Early Offer: LSU’s turn with Fournette 

November, 26, 2013
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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: The nation’s No. 1 player, Leonard Fournette, took an unofficial visit to LSU this past weekend and it looks like he liked what he saw; Saturday’s victories by ASU and Arizona could have a lasting impact on the Pac 12 recruiting race, and Alabama, Florida State and Louisville are trying to change the mind of one of Miami’s top commitments.


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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: Washington has a chance to turn its 2014 recruiting efforts around with key Pac 12 games; Texas Tech running back commit Justin Stockton found himself in a problem this week; and will the New Orleans (La.) Edna Karr duo of Speedy Noil and Gerald Willis III visit Gainesville this weekend?


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This year's recruiting class in Arizona is as good as it has been over the past several years, but Pac-12 programs aren't going to sit around and watch all that talent stay within the Grand Canyon State borders.

One Pac-12 program putting up a big fight is UCLA, which is attempting to cash in on a successful 2012 season, the star quality of quarterback and former Arizona prep star Brett Hundley, as well as the signing of Priest Willis and Kenny Lacy in the 2013 class. The Bruins have already extended offers to more than a handful of Arizona prospects and added one more this past Wednesday, when tight end Trevor Wood (Scottsdale, Ariz./Chaparral) picked one up from UCLA.


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ZACHARY, La. -- Brandon Harris didn't just attend the NUC Five Star Baton Rouge camp, he claimed it.

The 2014 quarterback smiled and chatted up seemingly everybody there. He looked like a leader on the field. He'd focus on the task at hand, make good throws but not take it too seriously.


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For QB Gibson, bigger is better 

February, 15, 2013
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Here's the skinny on 2014 quarterback Quentin Gibson:

He's not so skinny any more.

The suburban New Orleans product, one of the top 2014 quarterback prospects in Louisiana, was listed at around 165 pounds before his junior season. But as he prepares to attend LSU's junior day this weekend, he said he's not that slender figure you might see in some of his old product.


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ESPN 150 safety Goodman picks UCLA

January, 23, 2013
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video
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. -- After originally planning to announce his commitment on signing day, Tahaan Goodman (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif./Rancho Cucamonga) decided he couldn’t wait any longer. The nation’s No. 108 overall recruit and No. 9 safety knew he’d made up his mind, so after school on Wednesday, he announced publicly his decision to commit to UCLA.

It was an interesting recruiting road for the four-star safety, who was a lean to USC very early in the process and also considered Arizona State, LSU, Nebraska and Oklahoma. But Goodman had been linked to UCLA for months. He was impressed during his visit to the campus in November and had another opportunity to experience life at his future home, when he took an unofficial visit to UCLA this past weekend.

The 6-foot-2, 184-pound safety finished his senior season with 59 tackles, two interceptions, one sack and nine rushing touchdowns. He is the No. 11 overall player in California and the state’s No. 2 safety.

With Goodman in the fold, the Bruins =hold verbal commitments from six ESPN 300 prospects, including two in the ESPN 150.

Good friend and fellow four-star safety Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) is expected to announce his decision at 7 p.m. MT on Wednesday. The two have long said they will be a package deal, so more good news could be on the way for the Bruins.

Four-star S Willis eyes final official 

December, 30, 2012
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- With four officials already done, Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos De Niza) is trying to figure out his fifth and final trip in the next couple of weeks.

Three schools, all from the Pac-12 Conference, are in the mix.

"I have one more left, but I still have to decide which one I am going to take," he said today while at Under Armour All-America Game registration at Disney's Yacht Club Resort. "It is going to be either ASU, UCLA or Washington."

The ESPN 150 safety visited Florida State in November. He enjoyed his trip to see the Seminoles play and likes the idea of playing in the Sunshine State.

"It was a great visit. Marvin Bracy was my host," he said. "He was a great guy, fast. The experience is nice and the state of Florida is nice."

Nebraska, Virginia and LSU, respectively, also received officials.

“Nebraska, the Blackshirts,” he began. “Toby Wright, my trainer, he is from Nebraska so he tells me all about it. Virginia, my cousin plays there, Demeitre Brim goes there. That was a nice visit. It is a beautiful place.

"LSU, what else can I say. It was a great visit.”

Wearing an LSU shirt and socks, Willis might have silently indicated a favorite. But when asked he denied the notion, claiming it was just a matter of convenience.


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