Prospect Watch: Week 4


Hudsonville senior center Lane Potter.

Class of 2017

Bryce Atkins  6-4  215  Sr  DL/TE  Hudsonville: The Eagles are 3-0 going into today, Friday’s, game with similarly 3-0 Grandville. The Bulldogs will have to account for Hudsonville’s pair of athletic D ends, Atkins and 6-2, 220 junior Hunter Stearns. While he surrendered some wingspan, Atkins gave EK’s young left tackle Logan Brown a workout in the O-K Red opener with his second effort. Atkins and Stearns helped contain Kentwood’s speed around the edge to just 17 rushing yards while the Falcons were pressured into three picks.

Conner Chupailo  6-4  280  Sr  TE/OL  Zeeland West: Dux can fly after all as they have two players projecting as … 100-yard receivers this season. They give you different looks at tight end, lanky athletic 6-5, 235 senior Jayk Slager and the widebody thumper Chupailo. It turns out the big fella can catch and move some himself on a 23-yard TD catch as West pulled away from West Catholic in week 3, bringing to mind Jordan VanDort’s legendary catch-and-run as a sophomore in the state final. On a field full of talent between two defending state championship programs, Chupailo was often the biggest, baddest boy out there. Size, versatility, toughness, winning pedigree, make him one of the top available 2017 recruits in the Lake Area. The West/West Catholic matchup was loaded with talent, befitting two state champions, with four of the Lake Area’s top 10 uncommitted seniors.

Top 10 Available 2017 Prospects

  1. Andrew Ward  6-1  215  Sr  LB  Muskegon
  2. JaCorey Sullivan  6-3  205  Sr  WR/DB  Muskegon
  3. David Fox  6-1  215  Sr  ATH  Grand Rapids West Catholic
  4. Ben Sherwin  6-4  260  Sr  OL/DL  Traverse City Central
  5. Conner Chupailo  6-4  280  TE/OL  Zeeland West
  6. Jayk Slager  6-5  235  Sr  DL/TE  Zeeland West
  7. Nick Isley  6-2  200  Sr  RB  Rockford
  8. Walker Christoffersen  5-9  175  Sr  ATH  Muskegon Catholic Central
  9. Drew Couturier  5-10  150  Sr  WR/DB  Allendale
  10. Sam Neville  6-3  200  Sr  WR  Grand Rapids West Catholic

David Fox  6-1  215  Sr  ATH  Grand Rapids West Catholic: Zeeland West is amidst such a dominant run, it has taken a special mix of explosion, toughness and just pure football talent for an individual player to have his way against the Dux. It’s a short list that includes the top receiver, Grand Rapids Christian’s Drake Harris, and running back, Zeeland East’s Jordan Viening, that the Lake has covered in the past five years. Add Fox to the list, after West Catholic’s senior QB accounted for all three scores in their loss to West, running for two and throwing for another. The TD pass included a physical finish from WC’s other scholarship-talent senior 6-3, 200 Sam Neville. Fox started both ways and also led West Catholic in tackles, cleaning up the second tier and limiting ZW’s patented big breakout runs. Squares and delivers consistently when hitting and may end up a college linebacker. A healthy Fox finds him one of the fastest rising senior prospects among college coaches.

Top 10 Fastest Rising 2017 Prospects

  1. Kelvyn Valdez  6-3  185  Sr  WR  Godwin Heights
  2. David Fox  6-1  215  Sr  ATH  Grand Rapids West Catholic
  3. Ross Koella  6-7  210  Sr  TE  Grand Haven
  4. Joe Brown  5-11  200  Sr  RB  Portage Northern
  5. Brady Eding  6-7  270  Sr  OL  Hamilton
  6. Roger Stein  6-4  215  Sr  TE  Kalamazoo Central
  7. Drew Couturier  5-10  150  Sr  WR/DB  Allendale
  8. Biran Durr  6-0  170  Sr  WR/DB  East Kentwood
  9. Griffin Beaudette  6-0  175  Sr  QB  St. Joseph
  10. Reide Klinger  6-4  295  Sr  OL  Jenison

Jalen Mitchell  6-4  280  Sr  DL  Wyoming: In 2015 the Wolves featured one of the Lake Area’s most dangerous edge threats in Chris Veenstra, now plying his trade at Davenport. His heir apparent, Mitchell, doesn’t have the same kind of wingspan or flexibility but is an interesting prospect himself. He’s pretty slippery in space for his size and projects best as a two-technique tackle as he puts on weight.

Lane Potter  6-3  270  Sr  OL  Hudsonville: In a year has grown from prospect to impact player. He helped make the A gap a no-go zone for the Lake Area’s top underclassman, EK DT Mazi Smith, keeping him away from  asset No. 1 Eagles QB Jack Mandryk as Hudsonville ground out a week 3 win at Kentwood. Potter is more prepared than many prep centers as Hudsonville both runs and throws, and he’s doing it against some of the state’s best in the O-K Red. He also played on the Eagles’ D line helping them hold EK to under 20 yards rushing. A wrestler who is predictably combative in close space. Of similarly sized players at the spring 2016 LMFR combine, only Loy-Norrix’ Joe Hruska was faster than Potter’s 40 and pro agility times among similarly sized interior linemen. Both will likely have productive GLIAC careers.

Top 2017 Center Prospects

  1. Sam Allen  6-3  265  Sr  Portage Central
  2. Lane Potter  6-3  270  Sr  Hudsonville
  3. Turner Ruby  6-4  310  Sr  East Kentwood
  4. Levi Seeley  6-3  265  Sr  Grandville
  5. Levi Finley  6-4  260  Sr  Mattawan

Class of 2018

Job Mayhue  6-3  200  Jr  LB  East Kentwood: Has ideal frame, physical tools and is a load on the blitz covering space quickly once he’s through the line. Mike linebacker who could be one of the Lake Area’s top 10 overall 2018 prospects as he grows in the responsibilities and nuances of the position, to become an instinctive gap closer and vocal leader. If not, still has potential as a more primarily pass-rush role.

Class of 2019

Logan Brown  6-6  260  So  OL  East Kentwood: He’s the Falcons’ starting left tackle and also sees time at defensive end. Brown has an offer from Wisconsin and it’s easy to like his potential. He’ll only get better in the war of attrition that is the O-K Red schedule, build a thick skin and start playing with the anger of the grind, maintain his blocks and finish plays.

Mazi Smith  6-3  300  So  DL  East Kentwood: While he didn’t spent much time in Hudsonville’s backfield in his O-K Red debut, Smith still played an important role because he commanded a consistent double-team, including occupying the Lake Area’s top center in the Eagles’ Lane Potter. Smith was still able to free himself to make some plays on running backs. Checks in at 3 bills but is fit and played nearly every down on defense. He’s on track to join West Ottawa’s Rob Renes and Muskegon’s Terrance Taylor as the best interior line prospects from the Lake area in a quarter century. They both went to U-M, and a Wolverines offers seems likely for Smith.


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