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Junior days are underway, and the spring evaluation period is quickly approaching. While a number of programs are off to a fast start and in need of keeping impressive commitments in the fold, there also are programs in need of creating momentum and battling archrivals on the trail this spring and headed into the summer.

Here is a look at 10 programs that need a big spring, for various reasons (listed alphabetically):

Florida
The Gators saved the 2015 class in the days leading up to national signing day creating some momentum heading into the spring and summer. The time to capitalize is now for Jim McElwain and staff, and Florida simply must continue to gain steam with archrival Florida State swinging a big recruiting stick in state, and Miami on a run headed into the spring evaluation period. Florida currently has three verbals, all outside the ESPN Junior 300.

Naples High has enjoyed tremendous success under head coach Bill Kramer. With two state titles and numerous deep playoff runs, the Southwest Florida 6A power has become a must stop for college coaches having produced a number of national recruited prospects over the past decade.

In the 2016 class, there are a trio of prospects who rank among the best in the area, state and country.

Fils-aime hot on the trail despite injury in 2014

Headed into the 2014 season, ESPNJr300 running back Carlin Fils-aime was a name known to college coaches, and had a handful of offers. After injuring his ankle in Game 4 caused him to miss the rest of the season, the quick and powerful back was unsure what would come of his recruitment.

That question was answered in February with offers from Ohio State, Alabama, Auburn, and Florida.

"After I got injured, I didn’t really expect to get any more offers," Said Fils-aime. "When those schools offered me I was pretty shocked because of my injury."

The Gators are one of several schools the 5-foot-10, 175-pounder plans to visit in the coming weeks.

"For now, we are trying to go up to Florida during spring break, but if not will get up there in the summer. We also want to visit Georgia, North Carolina, N.C. State if we can this summer. I’ll probably fly up to Ohio State, too. I was just at Miami, and had a great time. I was impressed with how they rotated their backs in practice, and the basketball game against North Carolina was fun."

If there is one program yet to offer that could be a game-changer in the physical back's recruitment, it would be Stanford.

"I’m a big Stanford fan. I have always liked them because they have a great law program, and if football doesn’t work out for me, I want to go into law. That is one of the schools that I do love."

Naples High head coach Bill Kramer has had some really good backs through the years, including former Ohio State star Carlos Hyde. In Fils-aime, Kramer has a talented athlete who brings a lunch-pail mentality.

"I love his competitive DNA," Said Kramer. "He works in the classroom, and is already qualified. He’s a guy that you can count on, and it matters to him every day. Our defensive players say hitting him is like hitting a light pole. He’s can make plays in really small spaces, understands leverage, and is really explosive."

Byrd one of the nation's best

The Miami Hurricanes' 2016 class is the best in the nation in the early going. One of the 10 ESPNJr 300 verbals is former Florida pledge Tyler Byrd. The 5-foot-11, 195-pound versatile prospect is blessed with rare talent according to Kramer.

"I think he’s a Top 50 wide receiver and Top 10 corner. He’s really strong physically, he’s almost 6-feet even, you are not going to outleap him, and if he gets his hands on you, you are negated. He’ll do something about every day that is just spectacular."

Though Byrd is solid with his commitment to the Hurricanes due to the love that Al Golden and staff showed throughout the entire process, programs such as Florida, Georgia, Michigan, and others remain under consideration. On Monday, Byrd said he planned to make all five of his official visits.

Riley the best on defense at Naples High

While Fils-aime and Byrd are names known both regionally and nationally on the recruiting radar, Naples High is home to one of the top sleepers in the Sunshine State in safety Chris Riley.

According to Kramer, the 6-foot-3, 180-pound talented all-around athlete is the team's best defensive player, which is saying something considering Byrd is on that same unit.

"Our best defensive player, and that’s saying something because we have some really good players. He was Southwest Florida Defensive Player of the Year for good reason. He has tremendous length, he’s physical, knows all of his run fits, and is a great tackler. We can’t count how many one-on-one tackles he’s made in space against really good players. He can also cover man, is terrific in zone, and understands how it all works and fits together."

Riley is receiving interest from North Carolina, Boston College, and a growing list of others.

"I’ve heard from North Carolina, Boston College, Purdue, Georgia Tech, Harvard and Yale," Said Riley. "North Carolina and Boston College are two I really want [offers]."

Riley had 103 tackles and two interceptions as a junior, taking home area Defensive Player of the Year honors, as well as being an all-area punter. Riley’s father, Chris Riley, played quarterback at Connecticut.

Defensive tackle Colton Strickland and kicker Jerry Nunez are also expected to receive offers in the 2016 class.
While many of the nation's best in the Class of 2016 were known commodities headed into the 2014 season, prospects still develop at different rates and appear on the national radar at different times. This spring, there are a number of ultra-talented prospects who will bring out college coaches by the dozens:

Damion Dickens, DE
ESPN Junior 300 ranking: No. 93



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The updated ESPN Junior 300 rankings saw several newcomers to the list. Here are a few new additions to keep an eye on:

DE Damion Dickens
Dickens is an elite athlete for his size.

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KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- A day after the 19th annual Nike Football The Opening Miami Regional featured some of the nation's best skill prospects, the Orlando Regional on Sunday offered up depth at a number of positions, with the offensive line and linebackers standing out. As expected, a number of commitments and top targets of Power 5 schools competed decked out in team gear and delivered high-quality performances.

Here are some of the best sights and sounds from Sunday's ultra-talented Orlando Regional.


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Many of the West region’s best seven-on-seven teams were in Las Vegas over the weekend, joined by a few additional national squads for the Pylon Elite Las Vegas 7v7. When the dust settled, Ground Zero, a team made up of California’s Inland Empire prospects, took home the trophy after beating 702 Elite, which featured Las Vegas Bishop Gorman standouts.


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Nate Craig-Myers talks FSU visit 

March, 2, 2015
Mar 2
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KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Nate Craig-Myers, the top-ranked receiver in the 2016 class, was in attendance at the Nike Football The Opening Orlando Regional on Sunday. Because of a leg injury suffered during his senior season, the 6-foot-2, 202-pound athlete did not participate. Craig-Myers did, however, take a few minutes to give an update on his recruitment.

Craig-Myers, the 10th-ranked player overall in the ESPN Junior 300, has been committed to Auburn since last July, but it is no secret that he continues to look at other programs. The talented pass-catcher took a visit to FSU on Saturday and came away impressed with his time in Tallahassee.


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The linebacker position doesn't often receive much attention during 7-on-7 events, where quarterbacks, wide receivers and defensive backs dominate headlines. But with hundreds of players descending upon Las Vegas for the Pylon Elite 7v7 event this weekend, Caleb Kelly and Lokeni Toailoa -- the top outside and inside linebackers in the West region -- were among several must-see prospects on hand.


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KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Despite being overcast and rainy, the Orlando Nike regional camp had an incredible turnout of some of the top prospects in the ESPN Junior 300.

The impressive list of prospects in attendance was led by the 30th-ranked player in the ESPN Junior 300, No. 30 Isaac Nauta, No. 32 Feliepe Franks, No. 42 Demetris Robertson, No. 66 Rahshaun Smith and No. 92 Shaq Quarterman. The 10th-ranked player in the country, Nate Craig-Myers, was also in attendance but did not participate due to an injury.

While Saturday’s camp in Miami showcased many defensive top defensive back prospects, the offensive line was dominant on Sunday in Orlando.

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No. 14 Trayvon Mullen names a leader 

February, 28, 2015
Feb 28
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PLANTATION, Fla. -- The 14th-ranked player in the ESPN Junior 300, Trayvon Mullen, was one of only four players to get invited to The Opening at the conclusion of the Nike regional football camp on Saturday afternoon.

The 6-foot-2, 170-pound athlete from Coconut Creek (Florida) High School was impressive and won several one-on-one battles against an extremely deep and talented group of receivers at the Nike Football The Opening Miami Regional.

Mullen arrived to the camp decked out in an LSU back pack, jacket and gloves. So is it safe to assume that the No. 1-ranked cornerback in the country has the Tigers on top?

“Right now, yes LSU is my leader,” Mullen said. “I just like the people, coaches and just the atmosphere there. Coach [Corey] Raymond is a great dude. I talk to him everyday actually. He’s just a great guy. We just talk about everything; we barely talk about football. Mostly we just talk about life and things like that.”

PLANTATION, Fla. -- The Nike Opening Regional at Miami always brings out some of the top skill prospects in the country, with Broward and Dade counties being the most talented neighboring counties in the country. On Saturday, the event at American Heritage High School brought out more than the future stars of college football, but also some of the area's most popular former stars such as Edgerrin James and Chad Johnson, as well as Luther Campbell of 2 Live Crew fame.

Here are some of the best sights and sounds from the talent-laden Miami Regional.


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PLANTATION, Fla. -- The Nike football camp in Miami is generally regarded as one of the top camps, talent-wise, in the country every year and this year’s camp held at American Heritage School didn’t disappoint.


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RecruitingNation Camp Live

February, 28, 2015
Feb 28
8:09
AM ET
Follow the action from Nike The Opening regionals in Miami and Orlando and Pylon Elite 7v7 Las Vegas.

Weekly Commitment Roundup

February, 27, 2015
Feb 27
12:08
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The following is a list of commitments made to FBS programs from Feb. 20 - Feb. 26th:

ACC
Boston College
Scooter Harrington TE-Y
HT: 6-5 WT: 235
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Sean Ragan OG
HT: 6-4 WT: 280
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: 3

Florida State
Jamel Cook S
HT: 6-3 WT: 185
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: 3

Keir Thomas DE
HT: 6-2 WT: 235
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Zaquandre White RB
HT: 6-0 WT: 201
Positional Rank: N/A (2017)
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Miami-FL
Robert Burns RB
HT: 5-10 WT: 205
Positional Rank: N/A (2017)
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Tyler Dunning OLB
HT: 6-1 WT: 200
Positional Rank: N/A (2017)
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Deion Jackson CB
HT: 6-2 WT: 180
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Bentavious Thompson RB
HT: 6-0 WT: 185
Positional Rank: N/A (2017)
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Virginia Tech
Samuel Denmark WR
HT: 6-1 WT: 176
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Troy Pride Jr. CB
HT: 6-0 WT: 165
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Jovonn Quillen ATH
HT: 6-2 WT: 180
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big 12
TCU
Austin Myers OT
HT: 6-4 WT: 280
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Texas
Shane Buechele QB-DT
HT: 6-2 WT: 185
Positional Rank: #8 QB-DT
Stars: 4
ESPN Jr300 (#246)

Big Ten
Michigan State
Matt Allen OC
HT: 6-3 WT: 265
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Pac-12
Arizona State

Hunter Kampmoyer DE
HT: 6-4 WT: 240
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

California
Marquel Dismuke S
HT: 6-2 WT: 180
Positional Rank: #4 S
Stars: 4
ESPN Jr300 (#82)

Armani Rogers QB-DT
HT: 6-5 WT: 200
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Oregon State
Jadarius Byrd CB
HT: 5-10 WT: 170
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Stanford
Bo Peek DT
HT: 6-3 WT: 290
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: 3

SEC
Georgia
Tyrique McGhee CB
HT: 5-10 WT: 170
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Kentucky
Justin Rigg TE-Y
HT: 6-4 WT: 215
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Asim Rose Jr. ATH
HT: 6-2 WT: 190
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Benny Snell RB
HT: 5-11 WT: 200
Positional Rank: N/A
Stars: Evaluation Pending

LSU
Saivion Smith ATH
HT: 6-1 WT: 185
Positional Rank: #1 ATH
Stars: 4
ESPN Jr300 (#19)

American
SMU
Joshua Shelmire WR
HT: 6-1 WT: 180

Tulane
Kwanzi Jackson DE
HT: 6-2 WT: 210

Mid-American
Western Michigan
Joe Bachie OLB
HT: 6-1 WT: 210

Stefan Claiborne S
HT: 6-1 WT: 168
Positional Rank: #17 S
Stars: 4
ESPN Jr300 (#228)

Mike Caliendo OG
HT: 6-3 WT: 275

Emanuel Jackson RB
HT: 6-0 WT: 170

Adetokunbo Ogundeji DE
HT: 6-4 WT: 220

Kalebb Perry WR
HT: 6-2 WT: 180
When looking out west, it’s USC, Oregon, UCLA, and Arizona State receiving the majority of recruiting headlines. On Thursday, it was California’s turn picking up its first ESPN Jr 300 commitment, safety Marquel Dismuke. The Golden Bears equaled the 2015 class on Thursday after having signed just a single ESPN 300 in the 2015 class and finishing No. 53 in the RecruitingNation class rankings.


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