IMG 7v7 Midwest: Day One Notes

Mike Dudek

The IMG/NFA 7 on 7 Regional in Illinois brought out some of the Midwest's top prospects, but a few sleepers also emerged.

Core 6 RED ended up winning the championship, with runner up Elite 7evens, Windy City Boom and North Shore Elite also qualifying for the national tournament which will take place in Florida.

If there was a day one MVP, it had to be Illinois commit Mike Dudek. He sliced and diced defenses with his quickness, precise route running and speed after the catch. He also showed the ability to get behind defenders and he has good ball skills. He's not a big guy and 7 on 7 is suited to a kid like him, but his film and what we've seen of him in the past with pads on backs up his big day here.

One receiver without some of the press clippings other guys had coming in, but showed he belonged was Josh Perez of Lorne Park (Ontario). The Canadian product has excellent ball skills and went high over defenders to make some highlight reel grabs.

Dominique Booth and Jauan Wesley are two guys with major offers to their names and both lived up to their reputations. Booth ran good routes, and shows good strength when guys get their hands on him. He's also a sure handed kid. Wesley is quick off the line and was able to get deep a few times on the day. Jon Vea Johnson, who just picked up his first few offers also had a good day. He's quick and very natural catching the ball. He made a couple of tough grabs including a great deep one in traffic.

One sleeper who emerged was Waubonsie Valley's Christian Gibbs, who made a couple of big time grabs including a one-hander where he was out of bounds, and a jump ball over a defender where he showed his leaping ability and ball skills.

Hinsdale Central's Jimmy Thompson, a 2015 prospect, is a slot guy who also made a couple of tough grabs and established himself as a name to watch for next year. Another young guy who did well was Montini's Leon Thornton, who was consistently getting open and making plays. Flynn Nagel is a quick slot guy with excellent hands.

Defensively, Clifton Garrett was the top prospect at the camp and he did not disappoint. He broke up several passes, intercepted one, and as the physical player he is, roughed up a couple guys who came over the middle as well. On his same team was Nile Sykes, who is improving in coverage each time we've seen him this offseason. That was not something he was asked to do much last season, but he's learning quickly now.

In the secondary for Core 6 White, Trent Sherfield had a great day. He's a quick kid with good smarts, instincts and ball skills. Matt Morrissey had a good day on both sides of the ball. He has good size and made several big grabs on offense.

Dre Brown, considered a running back recruit, has been playing defensive back at camps. He played safety here and his combination of athleticism and length allowed him to make plays for his team.

Quarterback wise, Sean McGuire, a Wisconsin native playing with Core 6 had a nice day. He's a smart kid who makes good reads and decisions, takes his check downs and is consistent.

Northwestern commit Clayton Thorson is coming off an injury, but he spins the ball well and has great size. He threw a couple of beautiful deep balls as well. On his same team, Lombard Montini's Alex Willis had a good day. He's accurate and had good timing with his receivers. Michael Meyers from Guerin Catholic (Ind.) is a good sized kid with upside.

At running back, Matt Domer of Chicago Mount Carmel was able to show his route running and receiving skills, as did Columbus (Ind.) East's sophomore Markell Jones.

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