There have been some attention grabbers at the Texas vs. The Nation all-star game practice this past week in Allen, Texas.
Former Tulane QB Ryan Griffin has helped his cause in the upcoming NFL draft this April with a solid performance this week. He managed 9,026 career passing yards with 56 touchdown tosses and 35 picks for the Green Wave, He showed excellent touch on his attempts and managed to squeeze some of his passes in tight spots with good precision this week.
Currently, Griffin (6'5-206) appears to be a late round pick or an early phone call following the draft. His showing this week may have moved him up the board. NFL scouts noticed how more polished the West Lake, California native was during drills with improved accuracy and decision making. Griffin may have been one of the biggest surprises among game participants, surprising some onlookers by moving around well in the pocket, occasionally breaking containment and yet not losing his focus on the receivers and the open spots.
Griffin left an impression as a very cerebral signal caller with the toughness to face an onrushing defensive lineman yet remaining in the pocket to deliver the ball.
Former Lehigh WR Ryan Spadola is not a name that many college football fans would readily recognize. But the 6-foot-3, 205 pound target impressed at the practices in Allen by running consistently precise routes and making a number of acrobatic one handed grabs, using his body to shield the defender. Spadola showed toughness and a fearless side by running crossing routes behind the linebackers and in front of the safety.
Another bright spot was Missouri WR T.J. Moe who has been a virtual magnet for any pass thrown within six feet of him. Good foot speed, precise routes and explosion out of his cuts make Moe (5'11-200) no stooge. He grabbed 188 passes for 2,101 yard , averaging 11.1 yards per grab during his career at Mizzou. Many of those catches were clutch in key game situations.
Ex-Texas A&M wideout Uzoma Nwachukw (6'1-194) has shown explosive speed (sub-4.5) this week during drills, at times looking like a blur on go routes. He doesn't lose his perspective in route adjustments and where the pass may be arriving. He catches away from his body.
Nwachukw possesses deep threat skills evidenced by his 152 career catches for 2,239 yards (19 touchdowns) averaging 14.7 yards per grab.
One local player that may have leapfrogged earlier projections of where he might land in regard to the NFL draft is Southeastern CB Robert Alford who seemed to have a coming out party during the week of the Senior Bowl in Mobile last week. Alford (6'0-185, 4.5) was outstanding as a return specialist and demonstrated solid coverage skills. Some scouts have moved him up to a late second or early third round choice.
This Wednesday is National Signing Day for prep stars nationwide, but a few JUCO's are nailing down their destinations this weekend as well.
Former Helen Cox safety Duron Singleton has visited Missouri and Auburn but is taking in the scenery at Syracuse this weekend. All indications are that Singleton (6'1-210), a mobile strong safety, is ready to pull the trigger on his decision and commit to the Orange.
Helen Cox head football coach Willie Brooks feels the future is extremely bright for the former two-time All Metro performer and that the Syracuse coaching staff is getting a gem of a player.
"He's a hard-working, ferocious hitter that has enough skill to play at the next level," Brooks explained. "He's athletic enough to play safety but hits like a linebacker."
Singleton attended Fresno Junior College over the past two years.
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