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July 20, 2011
The National Select 7 on 7 Championships is among the summer's premier events, largely because it will bring dozens of FBS prospects together for three days of competition. Here are three things we'll be watching this week in Hoover, Ala.
1. Emerging quarterbacks
Much like regular-season games, quarterback play is vital to a team's success. If a signal-caller gets hot in a 7-on-7 event, it can truly be a beautiful thing to witness. Even though the quarterbacks aren't getting pressured by 300-pound linemen, passes must be thrown quickly, and thus there is little time to hesitate.
This week, the group of quarterbacks expected on hand includes, among others, Eddie Printz of Marietta (Ga.) Lassiter (2013), Kyle Faunce of Indianapolis Warren Central, Scotty Hosch of Suwanee (Ga.) North Gwinnett, Brendan Nosovitch of Allentown, (Pa.) Central Catholic and Justin Thomas and Jalen Whitlow of Prattville (Ala.). Nosovitch recently committed to South Carolina. Thomas, who could play anything from quarterback to receiver in college, is an Alabama commit.
2. Getting offensive
These types of events are tailored perfectly for skill position players, particularly those on offense. Without a pass rush, receivers typically have a nice little advantage, and it's always interesting to see what they do with it. Conversely, these events can be difficult for defensive backs. They can't lose focus for even a moment, and since players are in shorts they can't get too physical or apply message-sending hits on the field.
It will be interesting to see if Thomas also gets time at receiver. He's a noted speedster who has the ability to produce big numbers at an event such as this. T.J. Yeldon of Daphne (Ala.) is another intriguing player. The Auburn commit and U.S. Army All-American is a Rivals100 pick as a running back. He's listed as a receiver for this event, and there are some who believe that's where the 6-foot-2, 205-pounder will be in the future.
3. Prospect watch
Nosovitch, Thomas, Yeldon and Ryan Anderson, an Alabama commit who like Yeldon plays for Daphne, are among the many future FBS players slated to play. Some others to watch include: receiver D'Arthur Cowan of Olive Branch (Miss.) receiver C.J. Curry of Flowery Branch (Ga.), defensive back Alex Daleof Memphis University, quarterback Anthony Maddie of Joliet (Ill.) Aurora Christian and defensive back Torren McGaster of Daphne (Ala.). Curry is a four-star Georgia commit who has shined at camps during the offseason. Cowan is another player with numerous offers.