NCF On The Trail: Brandon Dawkins

Top position classes: QBs 

February, 10, 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)
The Florida Gators had a major need at quarterback in the Class of 2014, and Will Muschamp and staff more than filled it, signing two of the nation’s top signal-callers. Third-ranked dual-threat prospect Will Grier (Davidson, N.C./Davidson Day School) is already on campus and preparing for spring practice, while No. 7 dual-threat prospect Treon Harris (Miami/Booker T. Washington) was a huge signing-day flip from Florida State. Both prospects are great athletes who are accustomed to operating uptempo offenses. This should also help newly hired offensive coordinator Kurt Roper, who will install a similar scheme in Gainesville.

The Gators had the nation's best QB class; here's which schools had the best in each of the remaining power conferences:

The Pac-12 conference was all but officially shut out of the national championship discussion this weekend, but that won't dampen the spirits of the program that caused the dismissal -- Arizona -- or the one that will benefit most from it -- Arizona State.


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Arizona State and Oregon added to top-40 classes earlier this week, as the Sun Devils grabbed another ESPN 300 prospect and the Ducks flexed their muscles in Texas. USC softened its policy against in-season visitors, while UCLA will look to take advantage of hosting a committed visitor of its own this weekend.

Arizona State adds another

It didn't come as much of a surprise when ESPN 300 outside linebacker D.J. Calhoun (El Cerrito, Calif./El Cerrito) verbally committed to Arizona State this past Sunday, but that didn't make the commitment any less important for the Sun Devils. Head coach Todd Graham's program is picking up steam on the recruiting trail as it puts together wins on the field. Calhoun joins teammate Jalen Harvey and four-star tackle Sam Jones (Highlands Ranch, Colo./ThunderRidge) as recent commitments for Arizona State, while quarterback Manny Wilkins (Novato, Calif./San Marin) continues to do an excellent job in selling the program to recruits. It wouldn't be a surprise to see the Sun Devils eventually reel in California prospects Michael Lazarus (Berkeley, Calif./Berkeley), Kammy Delp (Pomona, Calif./Diamond Ranch) and Demario Richard (Palmdale, Calif./Palmdae), as the buzz -- especially in California -- continues to grow. Arizona State now has the nation's No. 25 recruiting class -- up three spots due to the updated ESPN 300 -- and sits just behind No. 24 Stanford and No. 20 Arizona as the third-best class in the Pac-12.

Hollins hollers for Oregon


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Weekend recruiting wrap: Pac-12 

October, 14, 2013
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A Pac-12 North showdown went decidedly to the Ducks, while two Pac-12 South programs added impressive commitments this weekend. There also seems to be some positive energy coming from USC, while a number of future Pac-12 signal-callers put together impressive performances this past Friday.

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Weekend recruiting wrap: Pac-12 

September, 30, 2013
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There was plenty of news on and off the field in the Pac-12 this past weekend, as several conference teams separated themselves with huge wins, Oregon landed a big verbal commitment, and USC made a head coaching change.


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Weekend recruiting wrap: Pac-12 

September, 2, 2013
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There were some big positives from Pac-12 programs during college football’s opening weekend, as Arizona, Colorado, Oregon, UCLA, USC, Utah and Washington all posted victories. The wins from the Bruins, Ducks and Huskies came in front of a large number of recruits, and, while there were no visible results in the form of verbal commitments, they definitely made an impression with everybody in attendance.


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Arizona recruiting kept rolling on Thursday night, with a pledge from four-star quarterback Brandon Dawkins (Westlake Village, Calif./Oaks Christian).

Dawkins actually jumped the gun a bit, as he was planning to commit at the Wildcats' red-carpet event this weekend, designed to showcase the new football facilities to a number of recruits. But Dawkins had to cancel at the last minute, so he sped up his timeline.


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Rich Rod snares QB Brandon Dawkins

July, 26, 2013
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Four-star dual-threat quarterback Brandon Dawkins (Westlake Village, Calif./Oaks Christian) committed Thursday to play in the Pac-12 for Arizona, according to multiple reports.

North Carolina State, Notre Dame and Utah also extended scholarship offers to the 6-foot-4, 199-pound prospect. Arizona State, Boston College, LSU, Tennessee and UCLA showed interest.

Dawkins completed 174 of 283 attempts (61.5 percent) for 2,135 yards, 17 touchdowns and 11 interceptions during his junior campaign. He also accounted for 486 yards and seven TDs on the ground.

Arizona now has 14 pledges for 2014, including two ESPN 300 prospect in athlete Cameron Denson (Tucson, Ariz./Salpointe Catholic) and running back Nick Wilson (Fresno, Calif./Central).

Summer recruit wrap: USC 

July, 23, 2013
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USC has seven verbal commitments in its 2014 class as the recruiting cycle rolls into August. Here are 10 things we’ve learned from the camps and events on the summer recruiting circuit:

Serious competition for five-star prospect

USC might have been the early favorite to land five-star athlete Adoree’ Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Serra), given the pipeline it has established with his high school, but that’s no longer the case as several national programs are vying for his signature. The dynamic playmaker recently took an unofficial visit to Tennessee and is set to check out a few other schools in the Midwest when he takes a trip to his native Illinois later this summer. He is also intrigued by Florida and LSU, and UCLA presents a local challenge for the Trojans as well. Jackson wants to play some receiver in college, similarly to how De’Anthony Thomas has been used at Oregon, so look for that to become a major factor moving forward.

Trojans still need a 2014 quarterback


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A look at the top five positions of need for USC in the 2014 class:

Cornerback

Adoree' Jackson
Erik McKinney/ESPNThe Trojans are hoping to add CB Adoree' Jackson as one of their in-state targets.
The Trojans added only one cornerback prospect in the 2013 class after missing on Jermaine Kelly (Washington) and Jalen Ramsey (Florida State) on national signing day, and the lack of depth at the position appears to be a glaring issue heading into fall camp. Simply put, history cannot repeat itself in this recruiting cycle. With in-state targets such as Adoree’ Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Serra) and Adarius Pickett (El Cerrito, Calif./El Cerrito) still on the board, USC could potentially haul in a great group of cornerbacks. If the Trojans miss on one or both of those, they might pursue other Southern California-based corners such as Denzel Fisher (Compton, Calif./Centennial), Naijiel Hale (Bellflower, Calif./St. John Bosco), Jonathan Lockett (Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei) and John Plattenburg (Corona, Calif./Centennial).


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Tales From the Road: USC 

June, 5, 2013
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Every Wednesday, the WeAreSC staff will take a quick-hit look at some of the top recruits and storylines facing USC recruiting for the week.

This week’s targets: A bevy of recruits will be on the USC campus this weekend for the school’s linemen and skill position camps. And though the Rising Stars Camp is the headliner this month, this weekend’s events generally draw some good talent as well. Anaheim (Calif.) Magnolia safety Jamal Scott, who has seen his stock skyrocket the last week, said he hoped to take an unofficial visit to USC soon, perhaps this week.


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COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The 2013 Nike Elite 11 tour continued in the Midwest on Saturday as several top players from not just Ohio but the entire country flocked to the Woody Hayes Athletic Center on Ohio State’s campus to compete for a spot at the finals later this month.

RecruitingNation writer Jared Shanker attended the camp. Here is what he learned:

LSU should have a clearer picture at QB
College coaches are not allowed to attend the Elite 11, but an exception was made on Saturday for LSU coach Les Miles and Tigers quarterbacks coach Cam Cameron. Both coaches had a son participating at the Elite 11, which allowed for Miles and Cameron to stand on the sidelines. The two spent most of the afternoon chitchatting with staff, media and even Norv Turner, but there is a good chance their eyes wandered toward the direction of four-star quarterbacks Brandon Harris (Bossier City, La./Parkway) and DeShone Kizer (Toledo, Ohio/Central Catholic). Both have LSU offers, and Kizer will visit next week. Kizer earned the ticket to the Elite 11 finals, but Harris was not far behind and could still land an invite.


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When Oklahoma State puts on its spring game this weekend, there will be plenty of recruits on hand. But an interesting development could take place at the quarterback position, as three of the West's top signal-callers will be on unofficial visits to Stillwater.


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BUFORD, Ga. -- ESPN Watch List Brandon Dawkins (Westlake Village, Calif./Oaks Christian) really wants to be in the Elite 11 quarterback competition. In fact, he and his family flew more than 2,000 miles to compete in Saturday's Atlanta regional.

The Elite 11 this year will be combined with The Opening so invitations are limited.


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Five stories to watch: Atlanta NFTC 

April, 12, 2013
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Stop six of 13 for the NFTC will take place Saturday at Buford (Ga.) High School in the Northwest sector of metropolitan Atlanta, and this event will not be short on star power. More than 300 prospects representing 20 states are expected to come out and compete, over 90 of which claim offers from FBS programs. Here are five storylines to watch at the Atlanta NFTC.

Will Lorenzo Carter emerge as the top pass-rusher in the Southeast?

Based on his junior season alone, Lorenzo Carter (Norcross, Ga./Norcross) put his name is on the map as one of the best in the country off the edge. The 6-foot-6, 230-pound defensive end helped lead Norcross to its first state championship last fall, racking up 136 tackles, 45 tackles for losses and 18 sacks in Georgia’s highest classification. More than 30 programs have offered a scholarship to Carter, and he plans to showcase just why he is so coveted this weekend.


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