4-Star DB Leon McQuay: Power Ranking His Final Schools & Predicting a Winner

Edwin WeathersbyAnalyst ISeptember 17, 2012

4-Star DB Leon McQuay: Power Ranking His Final Schools & Predicting a Winner

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    According to multiple reports, including Scout.com, 4-star DB prospect Leon McQuay III has narrowed his list down to a final group of schools. McQuay's recruitment has been interesting to follow because he and his family have done extensive homework and will make a well-informed decision.

    For this read, we're going to look at who those final group of schools are and actually rank them by their chances of landing the talented safety. We'll also take a stab at predicting where McQuay will actually sign.

    Let's get started.

Leon McQuay Scouting Report

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    McQuay comes from Armwood High School in Seffner, Fla. He is a talented 6'1", 185-pound safety who has class skills to play the free safety position in college.

    McQuay shows great speed and instincts on the back end. He is quick to recognize routes and route combinations, stays patient to not panic and has the range to go jump passing lanes and make plays on the football.

    McQuay, who has great ball skills and flashes good hands, is at his best on zone coverage when he assigned deep thirds and halves. He has to clean up his backpedal and can be sticky out of transition at times, but he closes sharply and is a very heady player. 

    If you're looking for a classic center fielder type of free safety, McQuay is your guy.

5. Oregon

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    The Ducks are in line to host McQuay for an official visit and details have to be released on when the trip will take place, per Scout.com via McQuay's father. 

    Oregon is the wild card and dark horse in this race because there is a chance McQuay could go to Eugene and be impressed by awesome facilities the Ducks boast. Eugene is a good college town, and of course Oregon is always competitive in the Pac-12.

4. Florida State

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    With McQuay being a Sunshine State native, you should already know that at least one of the "Big Three" Florida schools would be in the hunt.

    In this case, it's Florida State, and Scout.com reports that McQuay likely will be in Tallahassee this weekend when FSU hosts Clemson. 

    So keep your eye on Florida State as they present McQuay with the option of playing prime time football, in his home state and for a program that produces many solid DB prospects for the NFL.

3. Michigan

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    There has been some fluidity with Michigan and McQuay.

    During the spring and summer Big Blue was solidly in his top three, but with slots filling up fast in Brady Hoke's 2013 class the Wolverines took in an extra DB pledge that limited McQuay's flexibility.

    However, his father still told Scout.com that Leon III could still opt to take a visit to Ann Arbor and check things out officially. 

2. Vanderbilt

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    McQuay's father also told Scout.com that an official visit to Vanderbilt was in the works. The Commodores are thick in this race and could actually be the best way to get on the field the earliest out of all of his final schools.

    Vandy is an upstart program, and James Franklin has done a great job thus far. With McQuay having a GPA that is a lot of people's 40-yard dash time at 4.73, the academics at Vanderbilt certainly have to appeal to him.

    Early playing time and good academics? Sounds good.

1. USC

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    Kynon Codrington of Rivals.com reported today that McQuay seems to favor USC right now.

    The relationship McQuay has developed with assistant head coach Monte Kiffin has been incredible, and the audio and music program impressed McQuay on a recent unofficial trip, reports Scout.com.

    McQuay will likely take another official trip out to Los Angeles before making his final decision, which probably will be around Thanksgiving. 

Predicting a Winner

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    If USC had no issues about scholarships then this likely would be a slam dunk. Monte Kiffin has really made an impression on McQuay, and USC seems to have a major that McQuay really wants to pursue.

    Yet, Vanderbilt is in the hunt, Michigna is still an option and so is Florida State. The Oregon trip also looms, and that could throw a whole monkey wrench into McQuay's thinking.

    So my prediction is USC, but I caution all of you to stay tuned.


    Edwin Weathersby has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants, Cleveland Browns and the Las Vegas Gladiators of the Arena League. He spent a year evaluating prep prospects and writing specific recruiting and scouting content articles for Student Sports Football (now ESPN Rise-HS). A syndicated scout and writer, he's also contributed to WeAreSC.com, GatorBait.net and Diamonds in the Rough Inc., a college football and NFL draft magazine.