Armando Allen (Glenn Nelson/Scout.com)
As voted on by the regional analysts at Scout.com, here is the 2006 U.S. Army All-American Combine team, based on their performances on both Friday, January 6, and Sunday, January 8, 2006 in San Antonio, Tex. Without any further ado, here are the picks!
What stood out the most was how many picks came from the same school. Lakeland High School in
Lakeland, Florida had the most with four selections, while Ben C. Rain High in Mobile, Alabama had
two players selected for the secondary alone! There was certainly strength in numbers this year.
Peter Lalich, from West Springfield High School in Springfield, Va., earns Scout.com's vote for
being the combine's top quarterback, just edging out Pat Bostick from Manheim Township High School
in Lancaster, Pa. His combination of size, quick feet and a rifle arm were awfully hard to ignore.
Armando Allen from Miami Lakes High School in Healeah, Florida and Caleb King from Parkview High
School in Lilburn, Georgia were our picks for the top running backs at the combine. Both had
exceptional junior seasons, so we weren't surprised to see them near the top of everyone's wish
list. Both have good size, but Allen has that top gear that's hard to ignore. King was the
combine's most-complete back, handing all facets of the position with ease. He was also voted as
the U.S. Army's 'Super Combine' participant.
Brandon Clear, from Jamestown High School in Williamsburg, Va., was one of the receivers selected
for this team. The interesting thing about Clear is that he has a twin brother - Byron - and both
are excellent, rangy athletes that love to compete and get after it. Greg Little, from Hillside
High School in Durham, NC., was our other selection. He seemingly never dropped a ball while
getting a massive amount of reps, and he did it with style.
The Scout.com team was torn on who to pick for the tight end position. Austin Holt, a 2008
prospect from Bingham High School in West Jordan, Utah and Bradly Haynes from Mansfield Summit High
School in Mansfield, Tex. were both in the running, but it was DaJohn Harris, from Junipero Serra
High School in Gardena, Calif., that stole the prize with a late afternoon burst. Those coaches
running the drills were impressed with Harris' ability to get downfield and use his body to both
shield off defenders and to also make tough catches in traffic. He'll definitely be one to watch
down the road.
Limiting the offensive line to five players was extremely difficult, but someone had to do it. Dan
Barry, from Lake Catholic High School in Mentor, Ohio, was selected for his consistent work and
drive through six hours of demanding one-on-ones that tested the mettle of all who participated.
The longer they went on, the stronger Barry got.
The next offensive lineman was a bit of a surprise - a 2008 prospect. Derek Tuimauga, Holt's
teammate from Bingham High School in South Jordan, Utah, was just relentless in locking down some
of the country's best up-and-coming defenders. And he did it with a combination of guts, good
feet, leverage and a bit of upper-body strength. He's going to be a beast to watch for the future.
A beast to watch out for right now is Anthony Davis, an offensive lineman from Piscataway High
School in Piscataway, New Jersey. Davis has a huge frame and also a huge nasty streak. He didn't
just want to dominate, he wanted to humiliate.
And that brings us to our last two - James and LaShawn Pouncey, from Lakeland High School in
Lakeland, Florida. These two guys, especially LaShawn, play the game of football at a whole
different level. The Pounceys originally committed to Florida State, but have recently re-opened
their recruitment. Expect the recruiting attention on these two hosses to be as hot as a summer
day in Waco without shade.
The last offensive pick - top offensive athlete - goes to another Lakeland product; Chris Rainey.
And it shouldn't be a huge stretch to acknowledge that one of Lakeland's fine running backs would
look so good, especially running behind a line that included the Pouncey twins. But make no
mistake - Rainey earned this distinction on his own. Hopefully his size won't limit DI schools
from offering him scholarships, as he is a difference-maker all the way around.
On defense, it was nearly as hard to try and limit the number of amazing defensive linemen to only
four. Kaniela Tuipulotu from Kahuku, Hawaii and Joseph Barksdale from Cass Tech in Detroit missed
making the cut by a nose, but deserved to be included here because of their overall play. Tony Tucker, from Saint John's College High School in Washington DC., was one of the few guys that made
the Pounceys look just a little human. Super-quick, Tucker is all about bringing it hard and fast
from the edge.
But no-one brought it bigger, faster, or harder from the defensive end spot than the camp's
defensive MVP, Brandon Joiner, from Shoemaker High School in Killeen, Tex. Following in the proud
Shoemaker defensive footsteps (which includes 2005 U.S. Army All-American Roy Miller, now playing
for Texas), Joiner was enthusiastically nominated by the all the Scout.com analysts that saw him.
The next Eddie Jones, perhaps?
Andre Jones, from Andress High School in El Paso, Tex., was one of those players that early on
caught our attention. Good frame, great quickness, and a lot of hustle and tenacity were the
reasons why Jones made the list. There may have been some others that had glimpses, but Jones gave
it 100 percent all day long.
The final pick is Lakeland's fourth - and final - pick; John Brown. Again, it's no stumper that
someone from Lakeland would benefit from having to go up against the Pouncey's all day and night,
and with Brown it shows. He just doesn't back down at all. Probably played with the highest motor
of anyone on the lines during camp.
The three linebackers picked - Lorenzo Edwards, from Edgewater High School in Orlando, Florida,
Joshua Gaines, from Hendrickson High School in Pflugerville, Tex., and Bryce McNaul from Eden
Prairie High School in Eden Prairie, Minn. - are all guys that not only excelled on the field, but
passed the 'look test' off of it. Edwards just might have been the best overall athlete of the
Ben C. Rain High School in Mobile, Ala. is not a school you want to throw the ball on, if you go by the play of defensive backs Ryan Williams and Elliott McGaskin. With one-on-ones going on all day, the DB's had to keep up the pace and trade blow-for-blow with the bigger receivers and tight ends that came to the Alamodome to show off their stuff. Williams and McGaskin were equal to the task, and them some.
Courtney Viney, from Edison High School in Fresno, Calif., was the one defensive back from the west coast that really impressed all the Scout.com analysts. Not the biggest DB, Viney used his body and his quickness to break up pass attempts all day long. No wonder California, Nebraska and Arizona have already offered Viney.
Destrehan, La. supplied Scout.com with the 2006 No. 1 cornerback prospect in Jai Eugene. That worked out so well for us, why not do it again? Remember this name from the suburb of New Orleans - Joshua Victorian. He did everything right on Sunday. Will he be No. 1 like Jai? Only time will tell...
Jordan Mabin from Nordonia High School in Macedonia, Ohio was our pick for the combine's best defensive athlete. Truth be told, we thought Mabin's play at defensive back was so good that we had to figure out a way to get him on the list, and his athleticism is as good as any of the defensive backs that showed up.
And last - but certainly not least - the combine's best kicker was Gary Young, from Mountain Home High School in Mountain Home, Ark. Young tried his best to beat the combine best kick of 63 yards, but he had to be satisfied with a 60-yard boomer that cleared the uprights. The best thing about Young? He will only be a junior this fall.