Featured Photo: Greg Hammer (@creolehammer)
By: Marc Henry (@marchen44)
The On The Come Up Series will focus on players whose play at the #RoadToTheCrown DR7 tournaments stood out at each stop on the circuit. These players are ballers who don’t necessarily have the notoriety or fanfare, but The Platform is here to Exposed The Unexposed and the selected players showcased their skills before scouts on the circuit. Here is a list of players who opened eyes at The Woodlands two-day event.
Jonathan Lazare | Defensive Back | Class of 2025 | Klein Cain High School | 7v7: YMIN
Lazare is a jack of all trades, who lines up at safety with Klein Cain during the fall, but on the 7v7 circuit he hops on the offensive at receiver and lights up the scoreboard. He is shifty in space, he has the quickness and burst to create separation and his ability to get in and out of his breaks with his speed makes him a tough cover. Lazare plays with the same speed and burst at safety, where he breaks on the ball to close down throwing windows and he uses good eye discipline to accelerate his ball hawk skills. Lazare saw varsity action in 2022 for Cain. Look for him to entrench himself in the Hurricane secondary heading into 2023.
Reggie McNeal Jr. | Quarterback | Class of 2025 | Houston Heights | 7v7: KFA
McNeal Jr. has the arm talent to make any throw on the route tree, he has a quick release and he understands how to throw his receivers open. He stands tall in the pocket, with a solid throwing base and he engages his hips to get extra power on his throws. Reviewing his 2022 film, he showed the athleticism on the roll out to throw accurately and put the football on a rope. McNeal Jr. played well all weekend and his play showed that he is on the verge of being one the top signal callers in the Houston Area in the next two years.
Zaylen Cormier | Athlete | Class of 2025 | Mayde Creek High School | 7v7 : KFA
Cormier has a compact, strong build, he has the frame to continue to add bulk and keep his speed. When he lines up at receiver he has a quick first step, he has jitterbug like feet that allow him to create separation early in his routes and he was able to get open consistently during the tournament. Cormier is a versatile athlete who excels on the defensive side of the football. He has the range at safety to cover ground in a hurry, his ability to plant and go allows him to break on the football and shut down passing windows. Zaylen is a physical player with great body control and he uses his frame to his advantage, which are several traits that are prevalent in his game. Mississippi State saw his potential and offered him in 2022 and his mailbox will continue to get offers stuffed in it heading into 2023.
Tradarrious Coleman | Athlete | Class of 2024 | Theodore Roosevelt (San Antonio) | 7v7: SA Ducks
Coleman is big body athlete, who has the skill set to make plays on both sides of the ball. For the SA Ducks, Coleman makes his money at wide receiver. He has a large catch radius, which allows him to excel at the jump ball grabs, he has large mitts that engulf the football and when the ball is thrown anywhere near him, he lays claim to it aggressively. Tradarrious uses his long, lean frame to keep defenders out of his chest at the line of scrimmage and his extended arm length allows him to create space in press coverage. A long strider, with the speed to get deep in a hurry, Coleman was able to make several grabs to stretch the defense consistently during the two-day event. Back at Roosevelt in the fall, Coleman lines up at cornerback and uses his big frame and length to his advantage to reroute receivers. He trails wide outs in their hip pocket while staying engaged and he has superb ball skills in coverage. He has the prototype cornerback traits, which will make him a steal to any college program in search of an athlete with his set of skills.
Abiel Gonzalez | Wide Receiver | Class of 2024 | Clear Brook High School | 7v7: STE Boyz
Gonzalez has a knack for getting open, he is quick in space, he runs crisp routes and he gets in and out of breaks quickly. Abiel has soft, strong hands and he is a hands catcher who receives the ball away from his body, which makes him a reliable target for his quarterback. Gonzalez showed of his explosive leaping ability, with a highlight reel grab over two defenders in the back of the end zone, by climbing the ladder and stretching out for a touchdown. Don’t let the size fool you, Gonzalez plays bigger than his size and with a solid spring, camp season and senior campaign, he could find a fit on a college roster.
Alex Perin | Wide Receiver | Class of 2024 | Forney High School | 7v7: Texas Pressure DTX
Perrin is shifty in space, he has a smooth release of the line of scrimmage and he runs crisp routes. Alex has the speed to get deep in a hurry and has the athleticism to extend to make the big catch. Perrin has the frame to add bulk to his lean build. A multi-sport athlete who competes in track and field, his play on the field shows his ability to be explosive and beat defenders down field. He has reliable hands, he catches the football out front away from his body and he tracks the ball well in traffic. When given the opportunity, Alex produces, the more reps he gets, he heats up and makes plays. Look for Perrin to get more chances in the fall at Forney High School to show everyone he has the goods to be a playmaker.
Ben Perin | Wide Receiver | Class of 2024 | Forney High School | 7v7: Texas Pressure DTX
Ben has the ability to stop and start quickly, he runs routes sharply and this enables him to get open routinely. During pool play with Texas Pressure DTX on Saturday, Perrin had a field day, he seemed to have a connection with quarterback Drew Denton, who connected with him on couple of touchdown passes. Ben showed a knack for getting open, he understands how to find the open spots in the defense, which lead him to frequently be available for his quarterback. Get him the ball and he produces. A multi-sport athlete, who excels at track and field, he showed that he has explosiveness in his game during The Woodlands tournament. Look for Ben to take advantage of his chances this fall at Forney High School in 2023.
Mason Simmons | Wide Receiver | Class of 2024 | Bridgeland High School | 7v7: YMIN
Simmons has a stout, compact build, he is a big body wide out, who has the explosion to go up, extend and win at the 50/50 contested catches. He has the speed to work the deep routes, but he can cut, turn and shut down his routes quickly to create space. Mason has strong hands with large mitts, that engulf the football and when the football is thrown in his direction, Simmons lays claim to the ball aggressively. Simmons has the strength to withstand press coverage, he shrugs off contact by using his body to shield off defenders and throughout the two-day event in The Woodlands, he showed the body control to go up and make the spectacular catch. Mason showed up on film in the fall with Bridgeland, displaying the speed to get deep, he tracks the ball in flight well and he has a burst in the open field to separate at the second level. A multi-sport athlete, Mason also excels on the baseball diamond. Look for Simmons to turn heads in 2023.
Jett Lewis | Quarterback | Class of 2025 | Bridgeland High School | 7v7: YMIN
Lewis stands tall in the pocket, he has clean footwork and a strong base that allows him to engage his hips to get power on his throws. He completes the short to intermediate routes at a high percentage, he has a big arm to drive the football deep down field and he excels at the back shoulder throw that enables his receivers to adjust and make the catch. At 6’3 175 pounds, Lewis has the long, lean frame to add bulk as he matures. Lewis lead YMIN all weekend, due to his ability to thread the needle into tight throwing windows, he showed excellent field vision and his aggressiveness to throw the deep ball had them two games from the championship game on Sunday. Lewis won’t be under the radar much longer. Look for schools to start to show interest heading into the fall season.
Kade Ramirez | Athlete | Class of 2025 | Needville High School | 7v7: YMIN
Ramirez is a flat out football player, he has a plug and play skill set, just put him in the game and you will see results. He has broad shoulders, a stout build, with a powerful lower half and he has good burst and quickness that he uses on both sides of the football. When he lines up at receiver, he runs crisp routes, he works the option and underneath route tree like a veteran and his ability to find open zones enables him to be be a reliable target for his quarterback. Ramirez has strong mitts, with late hands and he is a hands catcher who receives the ball away from his body routinely. Kade has the athleticism to extend and use his body to shield the ball from the defender and make contested catches in traffic. When he lines up a safety, Ramirez has clean footwork and his ability to plant, cut and drive on the football enables him to play the passing lanes and make plays on the football. In 2022 at Needville, Kade was selected 2nd team all-district at safety. On film, you see a defensive back who can come down in the slot and cover, as well as a in the box a safety who is a sure tackler in the open field and a player who lays the wood. He plays from sideline to sideline, he runs the alleys like his hair is on fire, he closes well on plays run away from him and he plays through the whistle. Ramirez is a two-sport star, who excels on the baseball diamond as a right handed pitcher, outfielder and he has a big stick at the plate. Kade has the goods that collegiate programs seek and his versatility to step on the field at any position will earn him more looks heading into his fall season.