State’s top juniors compete in all-star football game

We’ll be providing updates all week from the 2011 Junior Bowl, which features 90 of the top college football prospects that are high school juniors from across the state of Georgia.  Friday’s game will be played at 7 p.m. at Grady High School and televised on ESPN3.com

Milton DE Carl Lawson, who is still waiting on his first scholarship offer, was the star of the East all-star practice on Tuesday (AJC photo by Bob Andres)

Milton DE Carl Lawson, who is still waiting on his first scholarship offer, was the star of the East all-star practice on Tuesday (AJC photo by Bob Andres)

Every year at the Junior Bowl, there are unknown players who “come out of nowhere” to register on the recruiting radar after outstanding performances in practice against blue-chip prospects who already boast early scholarship offers.

Last year, it was Raphael Kirby who was “discovered” at the Junior Bowl. Kirby didn’t have any scholarship offers at the time but turned heads with his stellar play at linebacker. Word quickly spread about Kirby, the Stephenson High School standout who later committed to Miami out of his eventual 38 scholarship offers.

A leading candidate for this year’s biggest discovery is Milton High School’s Carl Lawson, who dominated Tuesday’s practices at defensive end. He has no early offers, and was not an automatic selection for the game but won over RisingSeniors.com co-founder Joe Burns when he attended a Milton game this past season. The 6-foot-3, 250-pounder proved worthy of the selection during Tuesday’s practices.

We’d have to name Lawson the overall MVP from Tuesday’s sessions. “He had a great day; he’s explosive and has great hands – he showed everything in his arsenal that he needed to show,” said Rusty Mansell, National Recruiting Analyst for 247Sports. “I think he can play defensive end in a 4-3 defense. He’s strong and he’s got every move … I’ve heard a lot of people talk about him. After seeing him today, I think he’s going to be getting some offers soon.”

We broke down Tuesday’s practice of the East squad:

East Defensive, MVPCarl Lawson, DE, Milton High School

Little-known OL JP Vonashek is a "high D1 recruit," said one expect (Photo by Bob Andres/AJC)

Little-known OL JP Vonashek is a "definitely a high-level D1 prospect," said one analyst (AJC Photo by Bob Andres)

East Defense, Biggest surprise – Nigel Bowden, the 6-foot-2, 226-pound linebacker from Central Macon. “It was amazing how fast he runs at 225 pounds,” Mansell said. “He covered the field from sideline-to-sideline with a lot of speed. That’s what you want out of a linebacker. He plays with good instincts.” Bowden, who has a 4.0 GPA, has an early offer from Vanderbilt.

East Offense, MVP — Alvin Kamara, RB, Norcross High School: “He can fly. He’s so fast, and can catch the ball. He’s fluid, and everything looks easy to him. He’s got the tools you want to see at running back.” The 5-foot-9, 165-pounder has an early offer from Syracuse.

East Offense, Biggest surprise – JP Vonashek, the 6-6, 265-pounder who recently transferred from Glynn Academy to Camden County. He has no early offers. “I didn’t really know much about him but he’s definitely a high-level D1 prospect,” Mansell said. “He’s tall with a great frame. He has a great punch when he’s blocking and moves well with his feet. He can pass block, run block, and has a great knee bend for being that tall.”

To read Mansell’s scouting report, please go here

For rosters for both teams, go here

Check back on Wednesday for a report on the West.

– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

Note: Inappropriate BLOG comments and personal attacks will NOT be tolerated. We love the lively discussions but hate-filled, harassing and irresponsible comments are unacceptable.

Please Follow me on Twitter @RecruitingAJC + Please be my Facebook friend here

57 comments Add your comment

Satan

December 28th, 2011
12:19 am

Come to Bama.

If you don’t work out I will run you out-of-town.
If you collapse I will literally walk right over you.

RedandBlackDawg

December 28th, 2011
1:49 am

There will probably be more SEC coaches at this game, than parents and girlfriends. A good chance for some of these schools, to start offering for 2013. I hope UGA is one of those that does.

bamabitch

December 28th, 2011
1:53 am

Yes come to bama without GA and FL prep star’s bama would be Miss St not many 4 and 5 star recruits. Also we have to come to the great st of GA to get jobs, water, etc. etc. As a state we pretty much sux off of outsiders and think everyone in nation thinks theres something in the water down there. And there right it’s in the empire st of the south ……..Georgia. ……….. Alabama is weak.

bitter QB

December 28th, 2011
2:03 am

tide roll i mean turd roll will not be happy about those comments—–hahahahah

go lsuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu

Crimson Tide

December 28th, 2011
6:54 am

Still under the porch watching the NCG, just like a good little dawg.

Bama Fan#2

December 28th, 2011
7:36 am

Dawg fans get ready for Alabama to take the best 2 players from the
state Foster and Robert N. from the class of 2013.

Dawg Gone

December 28th, 2011
8:27 am

@Crimson Tide I’m hearing that your bunch is running away from us this year, seems you have “arranged” for Missouri to play us in your place…way to man up!

Northside Dawg

December 28th, 2011
8:28 am

I wonder if Northside’s LB, Trey Payne and WR-KR Keshun Hill will be on the roster for this game?

Gorilla Biscuit

December 28th, 2011
8:50 am

We still have work to do in THIS class.

SouthGaBrave

December 28th, 2011
8:52 am

SouthGaBrave

December 28th, 2011
8:53 am

Northside Dawg,

Anfirnee Chatfield and Keshun Hill are both playing in the game on the West team. Both rosters are available at the link Carvell provided in the article

SouthGaBrave

December 28th, 2011
8:54 am

Anfirnee Chatfield and Keshun Hill are both playing for the West team, Northside Dawg. The rosters for both teams are at the link that Carvell had in the article.

Moe Dawg

December 28th, 2011
8:55 am

Looks like this could be an interesting game to watch just to see some upcoming prospects.

bitter QB

December 28th, 2011
9:05 am

lets find out first what happens on feb 2 2012, then will see about 2013 class

—–my sources have texas firing mac brown and offering saban 10 million a year===tide fans

get used to being middle of the pack—–hahahah—go LSUUUUUUU

coma toast

December 28th, 2011
9:09 am

number 1 qb in America Gunner Kiel commits to …LSU…the rich get richer…

Coach

December 28th, 2011
9:09 am

A couple of these guys would be a perfect fit for Groh at Tech.

collegeballfan

December 28th, 2011
9:10 am

“…and has a great knee bend for being that tall.”

Sounds like a Jacket OL prospect.

BigTimeTechFan

December 28th, 2011
9:13 am

Nigel Bowden – Bowden would get the award for the player you want to get off the bus first on your team. Bowden, a 6-foot-2, 230-pound linebacker from Central Macon was physical at the point of attack, but also showed a great burst from sideline to sideline where he was able to cover smaller backs in the flats. Bowden has an early offer from Vanderbilt and wants to major in Mechanical Engineering in college. Alabama, Georgia, and Georgia Tech are other schools he is hearing from right now.

Maybe Tech has a shot at Bowden because he wants to major in Mechanical Engineering in college

BigTimeTechFan

December 28th, 2011
9:16 am

wow, Gunner Kiel commits to LSU. Big get for LSU
I thought he was going to Indiana??

Th truth

December 28th, 2011
9:20 am

Carl Lawson’s dad, Carl Lawson, Sr., was a standout at GT.

SouthGaBrave

December 28th, 2011
9:21 am

Northside,

Chatfield and Hill are playing in the game for the West team.

bucket

December 28th, 2011
10:07 am

It’s really cool to hear about a local guy (in my parts) Tyshon Dye. Sounds like he was impressive in Tuesday’s practice. Elbert County is starting off with Buford in the Granite Bowl in the first game next year so he could really turn some heads with continued good performances. Of course, I guess if Alabama, UGA, and Clemson are already hot on his trail he has already impressed someone!

tide roll

December 28th, 2011
10:25 am

Are you guys sure your talent evaluation doesn’t include the unspoken “Georgia Way” when looking at certain prospects? DAVIN TOMLINSON is a future All Conference Center. Sports a 4.0 average, received an offer from Harvard, is a Nationally ranked wrestler, 6′4″ 270, and pushed Florida commit Quentese Williams all over the field in Henry County’s game vs. Sandy Creek. And yet UGA isn’t seriously pursuing him. You’ve chosen instead to go with the Andrews kid out of Weslyan. Florida’s Will Muschamp has anticipated this and SIGNED two JUCO stud defensive lineman that Markese Pouncey would have trouble with, much less Andrews! Incredible isn’t it? I wonder what could be working against TOMLINSON? Are you guys sure there’s not more at play here? You know, the “Georgia Way” and all. To please Vince Dooley and the Sanford South Side Alums? I think there is. 31 years and counting. Is it any wonder?

bucket

December 28th, 2011
10:34 am

Man I hope tide roll either gets a heart transplant or the ajc blog police starts to screen out false charges of rascism. God knows that a black player doesn’t have a chance to see the field at UGA! (sarcasm tide roll) Good Lord, get a life dude!!! When you make false charges of rascism it hurts the legitimate cases where it still happens.

tide roll

December 28th, 2011
10:35 am

Al Davis Motto: “Just win Baby”. Uga Supremist Motto : “Just play the right people Baby” (wink, wink)

bucket

December 28th, 2011
10:36 am

“Inappropriate BLOG comments and personal attacks will NOT be tolerated. We love the lively discussions but hate-filled, harassing and irresponsible comments are unacceptable.” Come on ajc!!! tide rolls 10:25 am comments clearly violate your rule.

Gorilla Biscuit

December 28th, 2011
10:39 am

turd roll, why are you upset? It appears that your yellow maggotts have a good shot at Tomlinson. And guess where Coach Fishfry would probably play him…defensive tackle, where the fossil Groh can “coach him up”. And tell us why Coach Fishfry should play him at center, or gaurd, or tackle. And tell us how Coach Fishfry could get him to the league learning how to cut block the “Georgia Tech way”.

ROCK STEADY FREDDY

December 28th, 2011
11:20 am

THESE JUNIORS WOULD BEAT THE ALERBAMMER SENIOR AND JUNIOR ALL STARS COMBINED. IT WOULD BE A TOTAL DRAGGING! WEST OF THE HOOCH===SISSY BALL!

Jacket Man

December 28th, 2011
11:35 am

BigTimeTechFan, Bowden loves the Jackets, and they have a legitimate shot at him being their first commitment for the next group. He hung with Julian Burnett (another Middle Georgia “product”) and our coaches have been on him a while. We don’t normally offer our scholarships as early as other programs, so he’ll get his soon and, hopefully, we can get him on board. Think Vaughters (who chose Stanford) with this young man – very bright and very good athletically, albeit not quite as “polished” yet.

Jacket Man

December 28th, 2011
11:40 am

tide roll, Dalvin has the option to play offense or defense with the Jackets, whichever makes him more comfortable. He’s a great fit for what we call a “member of the Tech family,” and if you followed GA Tech football, you’d realize we do shift players from defensive to offensive (or vice versa) lines quite regularly.

BigTimeTechFan

December 28th, 2011
12:18 pm

@Jacket Man

Go to hear, any more info on the RB transfer?

Rhall55

December 28th, 2011
12:58 pm

Hope UGA doesn’t take suit like they have in the past and wait till a potential player has multiple offers already and doesn’t feel wanted by UGA, or a player states they grew up a UGA fan and is offered so late, they are 90% committed to another Team and we end up chasing them!! C’mon CRG; C’mon Man!!!

tide roll

December 28th, 2011
1:27 pm

You’ve heard what the first words out of Rodney Garner’s mouth are at the start of a UGA recruiting meeting? “WHERE”S COACH RICHT?”

Jacket Man

December 28th, 2011
1:46 pm

BigTimeTechFan, I think it’s safe to say nothing will be discussed publically about the potential transfer until after bowl season is over, and then, maybe not even until closer to signing day, depending on a few other factors, such as the “hill” (not that this should be an issue, just as an example). When I mention the bowl game, you MIGHT, or might NOT, assume the player has been, or will be, involved with a current program involved with a bowl game…I’ll leave that up to you’re imagination. ;)

Paul and Neon Jackson

December 28th, 2011
2:27 pm

Carl Lawson sr is one of the main reasons that I am a huge football fan. He taught me so much about being a rb as well as being a complete football player.Thank You for being our big brother!! Congrtats to your son from the Jackson family

brick

December 28th, 2011
2:56 pm

Crimson tide, Bama had their shot and choked at home. Not long ago Little Nicky said a team who doesn’t win their conference shouldn’t play for the championship, but how quickly he forgot. Bama stole OSU’s spot, or did they just buy it like they do kids who wear the Crimson. But Bama’s time near the top is about to come to an end, they will be caught cheating soon, have for the last 40 years, and be crying about wanting a level playing field. Really Bama wants a level playing field? How about not overesigning by 40 over a 5 year period and play on a level playing field. What Bama is doing to every other team is basically like Bama was when they were penalized 25 scholarship the last time they were caught cheating.

But on the bright side, the other NCAA ADs and presidents will soon grow tired of the Bama’s and LSU’s of college football having such a competitive advantage over everyone else they will put a hard limit on how many a school can sign over a 5 year period, thus putting another rule in the rulebook because of Bama.

Facts

December 28th, 2011
3:10 pm

An Inconvenient Truth

US News Ranking
GT: 36
UGA: 62

Endowment Size
GT: $1.5 BILLION
UGA: $600 million

Avg. Starting Salary
GT: $59,000
UGA: $44,000

Football
GT: 4 National Titles (1990)
UGA: 2 National Titles (1980)

Basketball
GT: 2 Final Fours, Chris Bosh, Derrick Favors, Thaddeus Young, Jarrett Jack
UGA: 1 Final Four.

Baseball
GT: Mark Teixeira, Nomar Garciaparra, Kevin Brown, Matt Weiters
UGA: Gordon Beckham.

Golf
GT: Matt Kuchar, Stewart Cink, David Duval, Bryce Molder
UGA: Bubba Watson.

GT is a GLOBAL brand. UGA is a regional brand.

It appears obvious that UGA is the “flagship” in name only.

#1 dawgfan

December 28th, 2011
3:15 pm

i wonder how one of the leading rushers in the state got left off the all-star game. Chaz thornton rushed for 2187 yards and 29 TD’S. Ive read alot about him the past two years.

RedandBlackDawg

December 28th, 2011
3:26 pm

Facts, is this to be your periodic post on here and other AJC blogs. Here is the fact that counts the most in the football world. 11-1, and you can post that as a fact. This is a football blog. Now I know, tech fans haven’t seen a lot of that on their campus for quite a while, but that is the way it goes. A fact you also failed to mention, is Tech. is the first school this century to be on NCAA probation twice. There is a fact for you.

just the truth

December 28th, 2011
4:43 pm

@ BigTimeJacketFan and Jacket Man, while there may be a transfer in the making ……. it’s not a running back.

Jacket Man

December 28th, 2011
4:48 pm

just the truth, I can assure you that there IS a running back (or more) in the mix for potential transfer to GA Tech, and I can assure you that you’re very famliar with them (and them could be in reference to a plural).

just the truth

December 28th, 2011
5:09 pm

Morris ……. it aint happening.

NEGAfootball

December 28th, 2011
10:26 pm

anyone giving the north/south all star game daily coverage?

Boom Boom

December 28th, 2011
11:23 pm

Don’t have a dawg or a jacket in this hunt, but it appears ” The Fact” made a very strong argument. Too bad playing in the ACC makes life a great deal easier to compete for titles in every sport.

We all know that some of the UGA nation really think their standing in the SEC is much higher than it actually is in its current form. That is not taking anything away from UGA, it just goes to show you how much some other schools have invested in their programs to achieve National Championships.

tide roll

December 28th, 2011
11:53 pm

Special K

December 29th, 2011
12:49 am

Please come to uga where the fans trash other teams to cover up the short comings of uga. Keep dreaming pups, keep dreaming.

Northside Dawg

December 29th, 2011
7:33 am

South Ga Brave:

Thanks for pointing out the link to the rosters. I guess I’m still in shock from the Tucker debacle to have noticed.

Recruiting | MrSEC.com

December 29th, 2011
7:55 am

[...] will reduce his list of schools from five to three on Monday.2. Here’s a look at some of the top juniors in the state of Georgia.3. Steve Kragthorpe deserves credit for helping LSU land top quarterback Gunner Kiel.4. Running [...]

Recruiting | MrSEC.com

December 29th, 2011
7:55 am

[...] will reduce his list of schools from five to three on Monday.2. Here’s a look at some of the top juniors in the state of Georgia.3. Steve Kragthorpe deserves credit for helping LSU land top quarterback Gunner Kiel.4. Running [...]

Mowillie

December 29th, 2011
9:22 am

Any reports on the West Team practice.