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May 9, 2013

RCS Then and Now: Offense

MORE: Rivals Camp Series presented by Under Armour

The regional portion of the Rivals Camp Series presented by Under Armour gave us the opportunity to not only evaluate more than 3,000 players but get an update on the recruitment of the nation's top prospects as well. But things can change quickly in recruiting, and what was true true when the Series kicked off back in March may no longer apply.

We begin our look at some select players whose recruitment have changed significantly with the offense.

RIVALS CAMP SERIES THEN AND NOW: OFFENSE
ATH KALEN BALLAGE, FALCON (COLO.) RCS Phoenix
THEN
Ballage had a handful of offers on the day of the Phoenix Rivals Camp. He showed up in the desert from an often-overlooked Colorado town and impressed from the moment he stepped on the field. Not only did Ballage showcase a college-ready physique, he moved it like a high-level prospect. Nobody knew much about him when the day began, but that had changed by the time the event was over.
NOW
Ballage has surpassed the 15-offer mark and is being discussed as possibly the top prospect in Colorado. He has been limited to unofficial visits, but plans to hit the road this summer. Michigan, Kansas State, Arizona State, Georgia Tech, Vanderbilt and plenty of others are heavily courting him as a running back or linebacker.

WR ERIK BROWN, FONTANA (CALIF.) SUMMIT RCS Los Angeles
THEN
Brown held just three offers prior to his breakout day at the Rivals Camp in Los Angeles. Those offers were from San Diego State, Nevada and Houston. He was a relatively unknown commodity before winning offensive skill MVP honors at the event.
NOW
Brown is a budding star with nine offers, including from UCLA, Washington, Cal and Oregon State. He also holds an invitation from Boise State, which seems to seriously appeal to him. He names no favorites at this time because interest from new schools continues to appear.

WR MONTE HARRISON, LEE'S SUMMIT (MO.) WEST RCS ST. LOUIS
THEN
Harrison showed up to St. Louis with five offers and in a bit of a recruiting stall. The interest in him had cooled a bit and the line of new suitors had shortened. Kansas, Kansas State, Missouri, Arkansas and Nebraska were his options. Then, he won the camp's offensive skill MVP.
NOW
Harrison's offer list has doubled. Schools such as Indiana, Iowa, Michigan State and Kentucky have all offered since his performance at the Rivals Camp Series stop. Michigan has started showing interest as of late. More offers are seemingly on the horizon for the 6-foot-2 wideout.

TE DANIEL HELM, CHATHAM (Ill.) GLENWOOD RCS St. Louis
THEN
Helm had narrowed his list to a final four consisting of Tennessee, Ole Miss, Florida and Michigan. He talked more about Tennessee than any other school in the group, though. The prevailing thought in St. Louis was that Helm favored the Vols but maybe not by much.
NOW
Helm is verbally committed to Tennessee. He made his pledge less than a week after competing in St. Louis. He said the coaching staff and the Vols' depth chart are what motivated his decision.

OT K.C. MCDERMOTT, WELLINGTON (FLA.) PALM BEACH CENTRAL RCS MIAMI
THEN
McDermott had narrowed his long list of suitors to Miami and Notre Dame. At the time, he was preparing to take an unofficial visit to South Bend before making his decision. All the while, though, the draw of playing alongside his older brother in Coral Gables loomed.
NOW
The family tie was too strong for the Irish to break. McDermott is now committed to Miami and part of a Hurricanes offensive line class that might be the best in country so far. There's no reason to think the four-star prospect will waver on his decision, as the book on his recruitment appears to be glued shut.

OL DEMETRIUS KNOX, FORT WORTH (TEXAS) ALL SAINTS EPISCOPAL RCS DALLAS
THEN
Knox was committed to Texas and thinking about taking other visits in an effort to get a sense for what else was out there. Ohio State was the biggest point of interest. But while Knox said he had plans to check out the Buckeyes, he insisted he was fully committed to the Longhorns.
NOW
So much for fully committed. Knox is no longer part of Texas' 2014 class. Instead, he is a man with a wandering eye. The top guard in the country, Knox now has a top seven that consists of UCLA, Oregon, Florida State, Ole Miss, Ohio State, Alabama and Florida. He seems particularly high on the Buckeyes and Bruins.

OL CASEY TUCKER, CHANDLER (ARIZ.) HAMILTON RCS PHOENIX
THEN
Tucker was committed to USC, albeit barely. He was obviously not totally sold on USC and was overheard responding with "sort of," when a fellow camper asked if he was committed to the Trojans. On the record, Tucker said he planned on taking additional visits but was still a Trojan.
NOW
Tucker has de-committed from USC and is taking a hard look around. He has mentioned visiting Stanford and seems high on Texas A&M, Arizona State and Notre Dame. He plans to take his him time with verbal commitment No. 2.

RB STANLEY WILLIAMS, BETHLEHEM (GA.) GEORGE WALTON ACADEMY RCS ATLANTA
THEN
Williams was just off de-committing from Georgia when he took the field in Atlanta. He had been committed to the Bulldogs for roughly a year and was ready to test the waters with other schools. He named no favorites at that time and was shy when it came to mentioning other schools.
NOW
Williams is receiving wide-ranging interest and is still yet to name a new favorite. He does, however, have plans to visit a host of schools. A trip to West Virginia has been set for July 27. He also hopes to check out the campuses of Clemson, Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida State, Florida and others.



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