Basketball Recruits Who Could Make It in College Football

Edwin WeathersbyAnalyst IMarch 17, 2014

Basketball Recruits Who Could Make It in College Football

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    Many feel basketball players are the best athletes in the world. While that's debatable to football fans, some basketball players do have the athletic ability to excel on the gridiron.

    That includes several 2014 college basketball recruits who could make it in college football.

    A 5-star power forward has the explosiveness to be a great defensive end, while a point guard would be a good fit as a cornerback. Plus, another big man is headed to Florida to play in the post and in the offensive trenches.

    All recruiting ratings and rankings are from 247Sports.

    Player evaluations are based on review of tape at Scout.comRivals and 247Sports.

Isaiah Whitehead, SG

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    Potential football position: receiver

    A 5-star shooting guard from Brooklyn, Isaiah Whitehead has a game that is based on strength and power. He appears to be a straight-line athlete with a lot of physicality to him.

    At 6'4" and 195 pounds, it's easy to envision Whitehead as a big receiver with strength on the perimeter. He may not get on top of every cornerback, but he'd have just enough speed to be a threat to safeties.

    Whitehead is headed to Seton Hall. 

Emmanuel Mudiay, PG

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    Potential football position: receiver

    A big point guard at 6'5" and 190 pounds, Emmanuel Mudiay is a 5-star prospect from Texas. He would be a terrific receiver due to his size and ability to surge away from defenders in short areas.

    In football, that would translate into Mudiay being a big receiver who could separate at junctions when running routes and shield cornerbacks away from the ball. 

    He's headed to play for Larry Brown at SMU, but June Jones would be smart to take a look at him. 

David Sharpe, PF

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    Football position: left tackle

    David Sharpe is a 4-star football recruit who also plays basketball. However, he's a legitimate recruit on the hardwood.

    "Sharpe was a standout low post performer for the class 3A state champions in high school," wrote Patrick Schmidt of Rant Sports.

    At 6'6" and 318 pounds, Sharpe is an athletic big man who can play power forward and center. He has a brighter future as a left tackle, but Florida head basketball coach Billy Donovan could use Sharpe's big body and athleticism as a rebounder down low. 

    Schmidt added:

    After meeting Gator’s basketball coach Billy Donovan during his Wednesday visit to Gainesville, he should be viewed as a slam-dunk to play both sports for Florida. 

Chris Chiozza, PG

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    Potential football position: cornerback

    Another Florida recruit, Chris Chiozza is a 5'11", 160-pound point guard from Tennessee.

    He seems to understand how to change speed on the court, showing quickness and short-area explosiveness.

    Those two athletic traits, along with Chiozza's size, would make him a solid cornerback for the Gators. The 4-star recruit would be able to slow-play routes in off-man coverage, then burst out of transition to close and finish.

    Chiozza's vision as a point guard would help his vision and awareness as a cornerback. 

Rashad Vaughn, SG

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    Potential football position: outside linebacker

    Rashad Vaughn is a 5-star shooting guard who is originally from Minnesota. At 6'6" and 220 pounds, he's a slasher with long arms who loves to attack the rim.

    Vaughn's first-step quickness and length on the court would help him become an interesting 3-4 outside linebacker. His long arms would help him stay clean during his rush after jumping on top of offensive tackles at the snap.

    Plus, his big shoulders are evidence he has the potential to get stronger, which would help him play with deceptive power at the point of attack. He's set to play at UNLV. 

Tyus Jones, PG

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    Potential football position: quarterback

    Tyus Jones is a 5-star point guard known for his awareness, instincts, vision and intelligence on the court. He's a natural distributor of the ball and does a great job of getting his offense into the right set while reading what the defense is trying to do.

    Along with his deceptive athleticism and quickness, the future Duke Blue Devil would be a solid dual-threat quarterback. Jones, who is 6'2" and 180 pounds, has smooth movement skills and plays with a ton of poise.

    Duke head football coach David Cutcliffe is a renowned quarterback tutor. Asking head basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski to get his hands on Jones wouldn't be a bad idea. 

Cliff Alexander, PF

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    Potential football position: defensive end

    Cliff Alexander is a 5-star power forward and one of the best overall players in the 2014 class. At 6'9" and 240 pounds, the Kansas commit has rare athleticism.

    Alexander is an explosive athlete with good length. He can beat defenders off the dribble when facing the basket. Plus, he can rebound at will due to having a quick second-jump off the floor.

    Alexander's length, explosive athleticism and quickness are the traits of an elite pass-rushing defensive end.


    Edwin Weathersby is the College Football Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. He has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants and Cleveland Browns.