Every year, there are football prospects who are overlooked – especially here in South Florida, where there is more high-level talent than anywhere else in the country by a long shot.
In addition, as we have said repeatedly through the years: we have in some ways become the victim of our own success.
There are simply too many major athletes and not enough colleges to facilitate them, which forms a backlog of very good talent.
Prospects are then forced to compete at a lower level that they never thought they would have to play at. But the main objective in South Florida is never where are you going to school – it’s where are you headed professionally.
The National Football League is home to some of the nation’s best athletes – and we always applaud the talents of so many. But when you are talking South Florida athlete, the NFL is a destination. More athletes from these two counties, from Deerfield Beach to Homestead, are wearing NFL uniforms.
When the 2016 season began, Miami-Dade and Broward Counties had an amazing three to one edge over anywhere else in the country. Sixty-three players on rosters across the NFL. As we head toward the Big Game – the nation will watch when New England and Atlanta will have the 305/954 covered.
There is no getting around the fact that everyone recruits this region of the country, 12 months a year. College coaches stay in touch with high school coaches, media, recruiting services and just about anyone and everyone who has something to do with high school football.
College coaches deal with a number of sources when coming into this area. In fact, for every one college coach who recruits this region, there are anywhere from 10-15 “sources” that provide information and keep them up-to-date with important things. It’s always been that way, and it will remain this way – especially in South Florida where the talent can define a program – for the foreseeable future.
As we do each week, we spotlight prospects in all classes, giving fans and coaches a perspective that they may not see from others who do not have the chance to watching these young men live 12 months a year.
Today, we are going to take a look at six Class of 2017 football players that we felt that even though they have received interest, they were way undersold and should have been right there with some of the region’s top football players:
Devin Adams, DL, 6-1, 230, Miramar: Adams is an amazing talent that perhaps was a victim of having to play out of position. But this is certainly a talented young man that many felt was as productive as any defensive football player in South Florida. If you watched him dominate all season, you would certainly agree. He was a dominating defensive force up front, and nothing will change.
Kewann Calloway, DB, 5-9, 160, Fort Lauderdale: From the time we had started to watch him as a junior, this was someone that every evaluator overlooked. Perhaps his size was something that you would shy away from. But as a true judge of talent, you need to watch Calloway perform, and that’s where he really turned heads. He’s a hard-nosed corner who got better by playing aggressive and getting in your pocket. As a return specialist, there were very few better. This is going to be a productive football player – no matter where he plays.
George Golden, RB, 5-8, 170, Fort Lauderdale Dillard: After starting out at St. Thomas Aquinas, this very gifted football player made his move to play for the Panthers – turning heads in the process. This is one of the best running backs in South Florida. Ask anyone who played with or against him, Golden is very quick, has great hands and is not afraid to stick his nose in there and block. Because measurable always come into play, that is what happened during this process, but again, if you watched him play and honestly believe he can’t compete at the next level – you would be mistaken.
Coemba Jones, DB, 5-8, 170, Miami Southridge: Having watched his father play at Southridge back in the day, then seeing this gifted young man compete for the past three-plus years; here is the perfect example of a football talent who is always around the ball, always making plays and always being talked about by the opposition. Jones is one of the best pure football players in South Florida – and he went out and proved it every week. That is the kind of football player you want on your team.
Enos Lewis, S/LB, 5-10, 175 Sr. Miami Central: Some athletes are just born to play the game, no matter what their size may or not be. They stand out in a hurry. Lewis has been a major difference maker the past three years, the first two at Hialeah American. His interest picked up because he had a monster spring with his new team, and they became that reliable tackler during a season in which the champions were dethroned. He has always been a football player who has risen to the level he plays at – and the same will happen at the next level. While it’s tough to sell a player that doesn’t have the measurable – it’s tough to win games without a football player like this
Robert Perez, OL/DL, 6-2 290, Miami Columbus: After starting out at Cardinal Gibbons in Fort Lauderdale, this is a gifted football player that you can see from the first time you watch him. Perez is athletic, has great football knowledge and will outwork you and leave nothing on the field. He turned himself into an elite all-state performer with hard work and learning from solid coaching on the line. This is another winner at the next level.