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March 21, 2012

Rivals/VTO camp: Offensive players to watch

MORE: Rivals/VTO page | Camps filling up

Saturday's Rivals.com/VTO Sports Alabama Elite 100 in Leeds will have a little bit everything, from Rivals100 prospects to lesser-known players trying to put themselves on the map. Today, we take a look at some of the top offensive players in the event.

Rivals.com/VTO Sports Alabama Elite 100: Offensive Players to Watch
MARK DODSON JR., RB, MEMPHIS (TENN.) WHITEHAVEN
Dodson is an excellent all-purpose back who ranks No. 3 nationally at that position and is a Rivals250 player. Ole Miss is his current leader with Arkansas right there, and others such as Mississippi State still in the hunt. Dodson is a quick, shifty and instinctual runner that is extremely difficult to tackle. He's very good at following his blocks, and then exploding through a hole.

AUSTIN GOLSON, OT, PRATTVILE (ALA.)
A longtime Florida State commit, Golson is an impressive-looking 6-foot-6, 275-pound tackle who comes from one of the state's elite programs. He's a member of the Rivals100 and ranks third among Alabama prospects and No. 8 among all offensive tackles. Golson not only has a terrific frame, but displays excellent footwork and uses very good technique. This is a player who loves to compete.

O.J. HOWARD, TE, AUTAUGA (ALA.) AUTAUGA ACADEMY
Howard, an Alabama commitment, isn't just one of the best players from the Yellowhammer State, but also from around the nation. The 6-5, 221-pound prospect is a special athlete with incredible length. He is a difficult matchup for linebackers to handle underneath and for safeties to keep up with downfield. In previous camp stops, Howard has been among the top performers.

JARREN JOHNSON, ATH, JACKSON (ALA.)
Johnson, who currently has offers from a few non-BCS teams, is a player with whom few outside his region are familiar. But his film is pretty impressive. At receiver, he consistently makes things happen. His first move is so quick he often can freeze the defender after making the catch. In the open field, Johnson not only displays good speed but the strength to get extra yardage.

GERALD PERRY, WR, MEMPHIS (TENN.) WHITEHAVEN
Perry is one of the top players on what should again be one of Tennessee's best programs. Right now, he claims offers from two SEC teams, along with schools such as Cincinnati. Perry figures to be among the fastest players at the event. He is a true deep-ball threat, and also is capable of turning a short play into a big gain. He also has very good hands.

EARNEST ROBINSON, WR, PINSON VALLEY (ALA.)
The 6-3, 200-pound Robinson, an Auburn commit and Rivals250 prospect, has a nice blend of excellent size, very good speed and solid hands. Because of his talents, he can help most quarterbacks look good. Robinson can make any type of catch, and is big enough, and tough enough, to take big hits over the middle. With that speed and strength, he's also very good after the reception.

RACEAN THOMAS, RB, OXFORD (ALA.) (2014)
Thomas comes from a school well-known for producing Division I prospects. He has good size at 5-11, 195 pounds. On film, he exhibits quick feet and nice explosion as he displays a north-south running style. He does a good job of keeping his feet moving as he shed blocks. Once he breaks through a hole, he is a long strider capable of separating from a defense. How all those things translate to a camp setting will be interesting to watch.

JORDAN WILKINS, RB, CORDOVA (TENN.) ST. BENEDICT
The 6-1, 193-pound Wilkins, who has offers from several top programs and is a Rivals250 prospect, is a physical specimen who is as lean as they come. Wilkins is a versatile back that can do a little bit of everything. Even with his height, he does a good job of staying low and keeping his balance. He's a patient runner that possesses excellent one-cut ability. He also utilizes his strength well.

If you are the coach or parent of a prospect with D-I offers or likely to receive D-I offers, or the prospect himself, contact Rivals.com national recruiting analyst Mike Farrell at mike@rivals.com, via Twitter at @rivalsmike or via Facebook.

These camps are INVITE ONLY and you must pre-register to attend, there will be no walk ups allowed.



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