Under The Radar: Future Stars of Straight Baller Camp

In addition to offering a glimpse into the far future of recruitment, the Under The Radar Straight Baller Camp also raises possible trends in high school football.The group…

In addition to offering a glimpse into the far future of recruitment, the Under The Radar Straight Baller Camp also raises possible trends in high school football.


The recruiting process for the class of 2028 has already begun, but for the majority of eighth graders, committing entails choosing one high school over another rather than deciding on a college five years later.

Additionally, a lot of candidates from the 2028 class are already committed to attending specific high schools, as is the case with many high school athletes selecting a college. Many of the top local candidates for the 2027 class went to Mater Dei after middle school last year.


There was a more diverse representation of high schools this year, with multiple players in attendance mentioning St. John Bosco, Long Beach Poly, Sierra Canyon, and Santa Margarita.

Eric McFarland, a wide receiver from Las Vegas, Nevada, will attend IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, this summer. McFarland compares Devin Hester as a middle school student in addition to the more obvious parallel with former Bishop Gorman wide receiver Zachariah Branch. Early in the year, McFarland gained attention when he participated in the Battle Passing Tournament for the Trillion Boyz in Las Vegas.


In addition to winning the Fastest Man Competition, McFarland was named the Straight Baller Camp Saturday’s MVP and was nearly unstoppable on some of the routes in one-on-one drills. McFarland has the frame of an all-purpose back and excellent short-area quickness, but he lacks the top end speed to easily go by opponents in man coverage outside of the hashmarks.

McFarland had some of the finest reps in the camp against Ace Leutele. Leutele plays defensive back and wide receiver for the OC Buckeyes youth football team. But with McFarland weighing roughly 160 pounds, the outcome of that contest was somewhat expected at 190 pounds.


However, Leutele is going to be among the greatest prospects in the area going forward. Leutele was likely one of the greatest players in attendance with the best combination of physicality, speed, and ball skills, even if he did not earn camp MVP. Leutele has a long history with college football programs; among his numerous cousins who have participated in college football are DJ and Matayo Uiagalelei.

With three interceptions in one day, cornerback Ca’Ron Williams did win MVP honors for the camp. Williams is a native of Moreno Valley, California, and an original Duck. Williams, also known by his moniker “Baby Primetime,” was one of the few prospects who had been called back to the camp when he was in the seventh grade. Among the schools fighting for his enrollment are Santa Margarita, Rancho Cucamonga, and Corona Centennial.

Quarterback Neimann Lawrence of Miami, Fla., won the other MVP award. While there were a few extremely good quarterbacks at the camp, Lawrence’s quick, elbow-tucked delivery may have contributed to his most consistent day in the 7-on-7 competition. But it was Neimann’s 53-yard pass that caught everyone off guard in the quarterback strongest arm battle earlier in the day. This summer, Lawrence will go to Ransom Everglades School.

Regarding powerful arms, Ace Amina, the quarterback for Las Vegas (Nev.), completed the longest pass of the day. Amina outdid Neimann with a 62-yard bomb delivered with a flawless spiral. Amina was among the top athletes in the camp overall, and he advanced to the second round of the fastest man competition. Amina is headed to Bishop Gorman, and as a dual threat, he will be extremely difficult for rival high schools to handle.


Another quarterback that merits recognition is Koa Malau’ulu. Malau’ulu, a 6-foot-2 athlete, threw a very catchable ball all day and finished in the first round of the fastest man competition. Malau’ulu, a well-liked person in Southern California with an outgoing demeanor, will be attending St. John Bosco.

With a throw of 57 yards, Russell Sekona—the brother of former USC defensive lineman Jamar Sekona—won the strongest arm competition. Although it wasn’t the longest pass of the day, each round of the tournament determined which pass was the longest.


Although the quarterback position was very good, the local position in this class to watch is linebacker. As players, Raiden Johnson, Nick Ware, and Derrick Jackson all have promising futures.

Jackson, who doesn’t necessarily envision himself as a linebacker at this moment, was the group’s greatest athlete. He has the ability to be exceptional if he choose to play that position. Jackson, who is enrolled at Long Beach Poly, has the potential to develop into one of the Jackrabbits’ most potent two-way players of the past few seasons.


However, Johnson took up the most coverage reps among the linebacker group and looked excellent doing it. Rather than biding his time until players in position to receive passes from his preferred quarterback, Johnson was securing coverage for wide receivers at the line of scrimmage and was not afraid to engage in one-on-one encounters in space with players such as Eric McFarland.

Even while this year’s camp was more evenly distributed among the skill positions than last year’s, wide receiver talent was as abundant as usual.


Wide receiver Roye Oliver of Chandler, Arizona, advanced to the fastest man competition’s final stages. Oliver, a skilled route runner, is the son of RJ Oliver, a former cornerback at Arizona State.

Among the wide receivers at the camp, Grant Mosley was possibly the best. Trent and Emmet’s sibling Mosley was unstoppable all day long, winning back passes that were challenged. Mosley possesses excellent ball skills and runs routes with grace. Mosley eventually follows his brothers to Santa Margarita, most likely.


Torrin Hill, a receiver from Anthem, Arizona, was one of the camp’s better pass catchers. As the son of Thomas Hill, a former Kansas State player and former tight end for the Green Bay Packers, Hill is already pushing 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds.

Zion Anderson, a wide receiver from Long Beach, California, is another 2028 talent to keep an eye on in the upcoming years. It was predictable that Anderson advanced to the further stages of the fastest man event. Travon Paterson, a former wide receiver for the USC Trojans and a 10.4 sprinter out of high school, is Anderson’s nephew. Anderson intends to play for Long Beach Poly the following season, just like Patterson.

Written by schooleiwa

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