The 2013 National Signing Day has come and gone, and for the most part, all of the area players who were expected to sign have done so.
But the recruiting cycle doesn’t slow down as much as some think. Already, college coaches are seeing where their most recent class still leaves holes, what athletes could mix well with their current roster and which players are must haves in one year.
Here’s an early list of Grand Strand players to watch for 2014 National Signing Day. Some of these players already have offers; others are on the cusp of getting official scholarship offers; some are a big fall away from getting the letter that could propel them to college football.
Naquez Pringle, DT, Carvers Bay – Pringle is a huge run-stopper and already has offers from South Carolina and Clemson. Ohio State, LSU, North Carolina, Arizona State, Arizona and Louisville are also showing tons of interest. Pringle was invited to the Under Armor All-American Combine; he showed off his skill set there in early January. The 6-foo-2, 270-pound Pringle is the arguably the biggest prospect to come out of Carvers Bay without the last name Geathers.
Hunter Renfrow, ATH, Socastee – The coaches kid knows the game of football, and while he probably isn’t going to be a major-college signee, his diversity on the field will make him a quality pick-up for some team. Renfrow, The Sun News’ 2012 Toast of the Coast Offensive Football Player of the Year, used his vision and speed to rack up yards and scores as a junior. He projects as a receiver or defensive back in college, but there’s a solid chance that a triple-option offense (Navy, Georgia Tech, Georgia Southern, Wofford) could bring him in as a shot to play quarterback, as well. His biggest choice, however, may come down to which sport he pursues down the road. Renfrow will likely also have baseball offers.
Delonzo Williams, RB, North Myrtle Beach – Williams put himself into the equation this past fall when he ran for 1,149 yards and 15 touchdowns despite missing two full games. The speedster also caught passes for 154 yards. Williams was one of the biggest reasons the Chiefs bounced back from back-to-back winless seasons to earn four victories (technically, a forfeit bumped that to five victories). As a senior, Williams will have big-time expectations, and it should equate to college opportunities.
Laquinn Bellamy, LB, North Myrtle Beach – The Chiefs’ departures from this past fall will be padded by the return of Bellamy. As a junior, he recorded 145 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, five sacks, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and an interception. He was second in the region in tackles (behind only Myrtle Beach’s Octavius Thomas) and his numbers should be among the best in the area as a senior.
Ryan Yurachek, TE, Carolina Forest – The son of Coastal Carolina athletics director Hunter Yurachek started to gain some recruiting notoriety after he caught 56 passes for 731 yards and seven touchdowns. Rising junior quarterback Will Brunson made Yurachek his favorite target in 2012, and continued progression between the two could help turn them both into big-name prospects. Yurachek is already getting interest from Clemson, South Carolina, ECU and, of course, CCU.
Jalen Simmons, RB, Waccamaw – Simmons’ ceiling is very high. He’s been the focal point of the Waccamaw offense since he was a freshman. The only problem is health. Simmons has torn his anterior cruciate ligaments in both knees, something that often scares away college programs. However, a productive and consistent 2013 could eliminate those doubts. After all, this is a kid who averages more than five yards per carry and had 11 touchdowns in seven games as a junior.
Sam Hall, OL, Conway – He isn’t the biggest guy in the area to play the position, but his ability to play multiple positions makes Hall a natural for colleges needing to fill gaps up front. Hall (6-foot-3, 245 pounds) started games at both center and tackle as a junior and graded out near 90 percent. He was a Toast of the Coast honoree.
Ryan Bellamy, ATH, Loris – There’s really not much Bellamy hasn’t already done in his time at Loris. The 5-foot-9, 170-pounder catches passes, returns kicks and punts and stars on defense from his spot at safety. Bellamy scored 10 touchdowns this past fall, including five on kickoff returns. A dynamic long touchdown run against Dillon in the regular-season is a highlight-reel type play that by itself will turn plenty of heads.
Cordell Brown, DE, Myrtle Beach – Brown maybe doesn’t have quite the flash that former Seahawk Tyler Knox did, but he could turn out to be just as productive as a senior. This past year, Brown had 10 sacks and 16 tackles for loss to go along with 59 combined tackles. He was listed at 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds, and with a little more size, college programs could start calling.