Several of the West’s best will be in Las Vegas this weekend for the fifth
annual New Level Athletics Elite 7-on-7.
The tournament begins on Saturday, and continues on Sunday, and there will be plenty of talent on the field at UNLV, just as it has been the last
four years, when some of the elite prospects across the country converged on Vegas.
Prospects from Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada,
Oregon, Utah and Washington will be amongst the talent on hand as well as the
Goon Squad, with players from all over the country as well as a team from Canada
The unique format features select teams. Some of those squads include two-time defending
champions Team B2G (Los Angeles-based B2G Elite Football Program), the 2011
National Champions Team 1925 All-Stars (Los Angeles-based team), Team Gridiron Football Academy (Inland Empire-based GFA)
and Team Pro-Sports USA (San Jose-based Pro-Sports USA), to go with other in-state
teams from Washington and Utah and regional teams from places like Central
California, the Inland Empire, Sacramento and San Diego.
It will be a 7-on-7 format, with teams playing in a championship and consolation bracket.
Here is the a look at a few of the familiar California teams who've
participated the past few years, and found great success, in Vegas.
B2G is back to defend their title from 2010 and 2011, the lone two-time winner
of the Las Vegas event, and they have three teams in the field, B2G 5-Stars, B2G
Malice and B2G Scorch.
The headliners for Team B2G's 5-Stars includes a trio of Scout 100 members, all
in the secondary, five-star safety Priest Willis out of Tempe (Ariz.) Marcos De
Niza and Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) teammates Tahaan Goodman, a four-star safety
and Chris Hawkins, a four-star cornerback.
Los Angeles (Calif.) Dorsey cornerback Daquawn Brown,
rounds out the vaunted secondary
One of the premier tight ends in
the nation, Riverside (Calif.) J.W. North's Marcus Baugh
is an offensive weapon
for Team B2G that is in the Scout 300. Other B2G prospects to watch are
quarterback Kelly Hilinski from Sherman Oaks (Calif.) Notre Dame, receiver Drew Wolitarsky from Canyon Country (Calif.) and Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne
receiver A.J. Richardson. Both Hilinski and
Wolitarsky made the all-underclass team a year ago in Vegas. Freshman receiver Trent Irwin
from Newhall (Calif.) Hart played in the tournament as an 8th grader last year
and was selected to the all-Underclass team last year.
Players to watch from B2G Scorch include Los Angeles (Calif.) Dorsey receiver
Delvon Hardaway and safety Jayme Otomewo, San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills cornerback Devin Holiday and Redlands
(Calif.) East Valley safety Tre Wilcoxen.
Team 1925 won the NLA Elite 7on7 National Championships last July in Dallas,
and while the majority of their squad signed with D-I programs, they bring back
the most important part of a 7on7 team, their quarterback. Harbor City
(Calif.) Narbonne four-star passer Troy Williams led 1925 in Dallas and then won
City Section Player of the Year honors after leading Narbonne to the City
Section title, so he's on a hot streak of winning major titles. He's the
only familiar face offensively, with sophomore cornerback Malik Cyphers from
Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian.
With Bryce Treggs and Jordan Payton gone this year, 1925 will turn to a slew
of four-star receivers to take their place. The headliner there is Mission
Hills (Calif.) Alemany's Steven Mitchell, a top 100 prospect by Scout.com and a
four-star. A similar receiver to Treggs, he'll play opposite a similar
receiver to Payton, and a teammate of his at Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks
Christian, Francis Owusu, another four-star receiver. The third four-star
receiver is John Ross from Long Beach (Calif.) Jordan. Another receiver
who's gotten Pac-12 offers is Xavier Shepard from Lakewood (Calif.).
Defensively, Encino (Calif.) Crespi safety Tyler Foreman is one of the standouts
as is teammate and fellow safety Brandon Arnold,
and sophomore Dwight Williams, a linebacker from Gardena (Calif.) Serra is
another to watch.
DB Guru from Fresno will rival B2G for one of the best secondary's in the
event, with a pair of Scout 300 defensive backs, Fresno (Calif.) Central safety
Hatari Byrd and cornerback L.J. Moore. Offensively, sophomore Michiah
Grimes, also from Fresno (Calif.) Central, will be the featured receiver for
Fresno (Calif.) Edison quarterback Khari McGee.
Gridiron Football Academy finished in the semifinals two years ago and in the
quarterfinals a year ago and they will again have a strong team in Vegas, led by
Scout 100 receiver Sebastian LaRue from Santa Monica (Calif.), who jumped on the
scene here a year ago. He'll be joined at receiver by La Mesa (Calif.)
Helix's Kendal Keys and sophomore receiver Jeremy McNichols from Lakewood
(Calif.). Quarterback Alek Torgeson from Huntington Beach (Calif.) Edison
and Redlands (Calif.) Citrus Valley quarterback Dalton Douglas will split the
quarterback duties. Defensively, three-star safety Marcus Stamps from Los
Angeles (Calif.) Jefferson, who won Co-MVP honors at the GFA Passing Tournament
earlier this month, will anchor the secondary.
The Cathedral team has been strong historically, especially two-years ago
when they won their "Pool of Death" before falling short in the playoffs.
Their quarterback that year was a freshman Hayden Rettig, who will be back to
quarterback this year as a Scout 300 member and a junior. His go-to
receiver is D'Amari Scott, who is his teammate at Los Angeles (Calif.)
Team Pro-Sports comes down from the Silicon Valley and they have one of the
top sophomore quarterbacks in the West, San Jose (Calif.) Bellarmine Prep's K.J.
Carta-Samuels as well as two-way prospect Kenneth Olugbode.
Here is a look at some of the newer teams expected at UNLV this weekend.
One of the traveling teams who will hit every NLA Elite 7on7 is the Goon Squad.
Coached by co-founders Baron Flenory and Kashann Simmons, the team with several
standouts from Texas and the Southeast, will look to win their first tournament
Mansfield (Texas) Timberview sophomore defensive backs Edward Paris and Brandon
Sim.mons, who both have a handful of offers, will lead the Goon Squad defense
along with Georgia native Brendan Langley. Quarterback Shane McCarley from
Texas will run the Goon Squad offense.
The top prospect in the entire event is
Su'a Cravens, the five-star safety from Murrieta (Calif.) Vista Murrieta.
Cravens is the top defensive prospect in the West, with offers from
coast-to-coast and he'll lead the Frat Boyz, coached by former Butkus Award
winner Chris Claiborne. Offensively, the Frat Boyz have Pasadena (Calif.)
Maranatha quarterback Andrew Elffers and Perris (Calif.) Citrus Hill receiver
Arizona Elite is one of the newer teams but they feature one of the premier
corners in the country, Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton's Cole Luke as well as a
stellar running back in Jalen Ortiz from Peoria (Ariz.) Centennial.
Team ASAP from the Bakersfield/Stockton/Sacramento area boasts a solid
quarterback prospect in Zack Greenlee from Stockton (Calif.) Lincoln as well as
one of the top running backs in the West, Bakersfield (Calif.) Stockdale's Deon Martin, a Scout 300 prospect who committed to Cal earlier this week. Elk
Grove (Calif.) Pleasant Grove has a couple of prospects on the squad, receiver
Isaiah Saunders and sophomore Brandon Lewis in the secondary.
The hometown team from Las Vegas has a championship quarterback of their own,
Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman's Anu Solomon, who led the Gaels to a Top 10
ranking by FOXSportsNext and the Nevada State Championship in 2011. He'll
be joined by BYU commit Trajan Pili from Las Vegas (Nev.) Centennial and
receiver Ryan Smith from Las Vegas (Nev.) High.
Also on Las Vegas 7 is 2014 star Nathan Starks
and receiver Jamir Tillman, both
from Bishop Gorman
4th Quarter Sports emerged last year as the winners of the BMOC
Under-the-Lights tournament behind MVP quarterback Jihad Vercher from Los
Angeles (Calif.) Salesian. He'll be joined by a few of his Salesian
teammates from the 2014 class, athletes Jamadre Cobb and Marquis Ware, who
already have a few offers in. Tustin linebacker Marshaun Daniel and
running back Terence Martinez also join the team as well as Long Beach (Calif.)
Poly safety David Price and running back Marcus Lewis.
A year ago, Alliance 1 won the AIGA 7on7 tournament and they're back in Vegas
with freshman quarterback Josh Rosen, an all-underclass pick a year ago, who's
now set to take over at Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco and he'll be joined
by his Braves teammate Davonte Young, a three-star running back as well as
sophomore defensive back Jaleel Wadood.
Prodigy won the 4th Quarter Tournament a week ago and they'll be in Vegas
this weekend with a couple of prospects to watch, including Murrieta (Calif.)
Vista Murrieta outside linebacker Tyler Cook and Heritage (Calif.) running back
Pride 'N Skillz is headed by sophomore quarterback Eban Jackson from Long
Beach (Calif.) Poly, who will run the Jackrabbits offense this fall.
Jackson first caught our attention two years ago as an 8th grader at the Eastbay
Junior All-American Game in San Antonio. A couple of prospects from
Cerritos (Calif) Gahr are also on the roster in receiver Patrick Enweally and
running back Alex Kline.
BBT from San Bernardino has Upland (Calif.) quarterback Nate Romine, who led
the Highlanders to the CIF-SS Inland Division semifinals in 2011 running their
offense while Air Show Elite has Inglewood (Calif.) defensive end Chauntez Jackson, who will play linebacker and tight end. Game Steps has Los
Angeles (Calif.) Dorsey quarterback Reggie Bell leading their offense.
Big Picture Athletics from the Central Coast of California, features some
standouts from Santa Maria (Calif.) St. Joseph in receiver Zak Karsh and tight
end Ryan Mediano.
LV Prospects has running back Donnell Pumphrey from hometown Las Vegas, with
a couple of BCS offers and Tucson Showtime features 2014 stud receiver Cameron Denson.
The Factory Football Group has some underclassmen to watch like Brandon
Finona from Monterey (Calif.) and Fresno (Calif.) Edison prospects A.J. Greeley
and Tyrone Smith.
I.E. Elite has a couple of under-the-radar guys to watch in Rancho Cucamonga
(Calif.) athlete Tyan Washington and La Verne (Calif.) Damien receiver Josh Savage.
The Washington team is bringing down a pair of talented passers. Yakima (Wash.) Eisenhower quarterback Kolney Cassel already holds an offer from SMU and is the more highly recruited of the two. Seattle (Wash.) King’s signal caller Billy Green has been under the radar but has great touch on his throws and the accuracy to excel in a 7on7.
Wentachee (Wash.) 2014 running back Isaiah Brandt-Sims is a track phenom. The sophomore is the only underclassmen on the Washington roster and has the speed to make defenses pay. Brandt-Sims is a capable pass catcher out of the backfield and should have an big weekend for team Washington.
Washington has a history of sending talented pass-catchers to Vegas. Past team members include Kasen Williams, Jermaine Kearse, Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Trent Sewell, Michael Rector and Gino Simone. This year’s squad also boasts talent on the outside.
Federal Way (Wash.) receiver Mike Tate can always find open space and separate from his defender. At 6’4” Lakewood (Wash.) Lakes wide out Sammie Long presets a matchup problem for opponents. Long already holds an offer from Washington and is thought to be a big Husky lean. Sammamish (Wash.) Skyline receiver Nic Sblendorio showed the best hands through the practices and will catch anything thrown his way. Bothell (Wash.) prospect Aaron Wilks is like Long in that he towers over defenders. Wilks is also a great prospect on the other side of the ball, playing defensive end for the Cougars. Gig Harbor (Wash.) Peninsula tight end Kyle Self is the dual threat that you look for from the position. He possesses the ability to both catch passes and block from the tight end position.
The sole linebacker on Team Washington is Tukwila (Wash.) Foster prospect Micah Breland. Breland has the speed and coverage ability to perform well at a 7on7, where many linebackers can look lost. Breland is not just a standout on the football field, but also excels in the classroom.
The defensive backfield is as deep as it has ever been for the Washington team. The cornerback position headed by Graham (Wash.) Graham-Kapowsin athlete Kahlil Dawson. Dawson can also play wide receiver and holds an early offer from Wyoming. Federal Way (Wash.) twin brothers Ezekial McNeal and Jeremiah McNeal provide great speed to the secondary. Ezekial will also see time at safety for the team. Bothell (Wash.) corner Reshon Watson is easily the most physical player on the roster and will be one to watch. Federal Way (Wash.) prospect D’Londo Tucker might be the best pure cover corner on the team.
Seattle (Wash.) Prep safety Tere Calloway is most highly recruited prospect on the team. Calloway already holds offers from Colorado, Portland State, Purdue and SMU. Tacoma (Wash.) Bellarmine Prep athlete Calvin Chandler can play receiver in addition to his responsibilities on the defensive side of the ball. Snoqualmie (Wash.) Mount Si safety Hunter Malberg is someone that could break out over the weekend. Malberg has a big football IQ and will make most of the defensive calls for the team.
Team Utah 1
Team Utah has been one of the most consistent performers in the history of the NLA Athletics Vegas Regional, finishing 3rd last season and 2nd the previous two years. A pair of South Jordan (Utah) Bingham prospects highlight the offensive talent. Wide receiver Hayden Weichers is a very quick prospect getting college attention. Tight end Dalton Schultz is only a sophomore but already holds a Utah offer.
Sandy (Utah) Alta wide receiver Harrison Handley is a massive prospect standing 6’6” 200lbs and could grow into a tight end at the next level. Highland (Utah) Lone Peak wide receiver Talon Shumway is an excellent athlete that can play all over the field. Shumway stood out last season in Vegas as just a sophomore and already offers from both BYU and Utah.
RB David Adams
WR John Fakahafua
WR Harrison Handley
QB Jake Lloyd
WR Dax Raymond
TE Dalton Schultz
WR Talon Shumway
WR Hayden Weichers
LB Chasen Andersen
S Stratton Brown
DB Malcolm Card-Turner
OLB Colton Grossaint
OLB Uaea Masina
S Kavika Fonua
S Chase Nelson
DB Zach Swenson
OLB Albert Tai
Team Utah 2
Sandy (Utah) wide receiver Ammon Barker has all of the physical tools to be a special player. Salt Lake City (Utah) Cottonwood tight end Siale Fakailoatonga committed to Utah recently, but word is the recruiting process is far from over for the highly sought after prospect.
South Jordan (Utah) Bingham linebacker Drake Miller is a prospect that coach Peck has spoken very highly of. Utah is a big talent state in the Northwest and should be more than capable of bringing two talented rosters to the NLA Vegas Regional.
WR Beau Artest
WR Ammon Barker
RB Marquis Beans
WR Jesse Brady
WR Kalan Cantwell
TE Siale Fakailoatonga
RB Eddie Hall
QB Kody Wilstead
S Austin Gibbs
S Riley Guatave
S Brekin Gunter
LB Drake Miller
C Sione MoliI
LB Patrick Palau
C Jewka Patatefa
S Adam Thompson
This is likely to be the best Oregon team ever to take the field in the NLA Vegas regional. The team is headlined by athletes in the defensive backfield. Portland (Ore.) Central Catholic safety Dallin Leavitt has already committed to BYU.
Two younger brothers will try and replicate the success of their elder siblings. Portland (Ore.) Grant ATH Nate Halverson is the younger brother of 2012 Portland State signee OLB Daniel Halverson. Vancouver (Wash.) Skyview ATH Reiley Henderson is younger of 2011 Hawaii signee Ellis Henderson.
Wilsonville (Ore.) S Johnny Ragin was one of the top performers at the U.S. Army Underclass Combine in January. Eugene (Ore.) Sheldon ATH Connor Straham is one of the best offensive performers in the state. Portland (Ore.) Jesuit running back A.J. Glass toped 2,000 yards rushing last year.
QB Justin Adams
QB Wyatt Houston
RB Jake Hoffman
WR AJ Glass
WR Connor Strahm
WR James Banks
WR Nate Halverson
TE Forrest Russell
LB Reiley Henderson
DB Deshawn Stephens
DB Dallen Leavitt
DB Erick Douglas III
DB Griffin McLain
DB Jimbo Davis
S Tanner Shipley
S Johnny Ragin
Team Hawaii consists of prospects with ties to the Hawaiian Islands, though most now reside on the mainland. The team is always one of the younger groups at the tournament. Las Vegas (Nev. ) Bishop Gorman quarterback Danny Hong came out as an 8th grader last year showed well. He is back this year to lead the team further than their quarterfinal finish last year.
Salt Lake City (Utah) Cottonwood brothers Sione and T.J. Fehoko are special talents. T.J. played defensive end on varsity as just a freshman. He already has a verbal offer from Utah.
QB Danny Hong
WR Riley Hoff
DB Joren Cambell
WR Terrence Chambers
TE Isaiah Nacua
DB Armand Perry
WR Keenan Smith
S/WR Nate Starks
LB KU Tapusoa
RB/LB Niko Kapeli
WR Cliff Betson
LB T.J. Fehoko
S Sione Fehoko
LB Deion King