PITTSBURGH, Pa. -- There were close to 600 football players that attended this past weekend's Pittsburgh Nike Football Combine looking to either to open some eyes, or for a select few to raise their recruitment. Everyone that follows football knows how much talent comes from Western Pennsylvania each year and this year is no different. Let's take a look at this week's RISE 7 from the Pittsburgh Nike Combine.
Bath-Haverling (Bath, N.Y.) Athlete
Combine veteran Nick Carroll came to prove that he might be one of the hardest workers on the east coast and saw his SPARQ Rating jump nearly 20 points from last year to the days best of 102.18. Still looking to land that first offer, Carroll is determined to prove that he has the skills to play at the next level and has been invited to junior days at Pittsburgh, UConn and Syracuse. At 5-foot-11, 188 pounds Carroll possesses the size and strength to be able to play safety in college after earning all-state honors this past year playing primarily running back and linebacker. Carroll ran a 4.78 40-yard dash, 4.06 shuttle and jumped 34.5 inches in the vertical to power his top SPARQ Rating Saturday.
Belle Vernon Area (Belle Vernon, Pa.) Running Back
Widely regarded as one of the state's top backs in the Class of 2011, Green did not disappoint Saturday, posting a 90-plus SPARQ Rating at the Pittsburgh Nike Combine for the second straight year. Having added 20 pounds of muscle to his now 5-11, 193 pound frame, Green has the size and athletic ability (4.7 40, 4.4 shuttle, 32-inch vertical) to make noise at the Division I level.
Gateway (Monroeville, Pa.) Defensive Back
One of the area's tops teams, Gateway was well represented on Saturday and it was one player in particular that stood out amongst the group. Dondi Kirby was one of the most physically impressive players in attendance, measuring in at 6-2, 185 pounds. Kirby's day was highlighted by a 4.25 time in the shuttle while also posting a 34.6-inch vertical jump. With offers from Michigan and Maryland to date, after this performance there is little doubt that more schools looking for a cover corner well jump in the mix. Kirby also posted a 35-5 foot power ball throw giving him a SPARQ Rating of 89.70. Look for more offers to start coming after unofficial visits and junior days.
Fort Hamilton (Brooklyn, N.Y.) Wide Receiver
New York wideout Brandon Reddish made the long journey to Pittsburgh from Brooklyn and it was well worth it for the 2009 Class AA second team All-State selection. This past year, Reddish was a do-it-all player and even better came up big when it counted, as he scored six touchdowns in three games during the playoffs. Claiming an offer from Rutgers, Reddish measured in at 5-10, 165 pounds and tested extremely well with a 4.70 40-yard dash, 4.22 shuttle and 31.5 inches in the vertical for a SPARQ Rating of 91.47.
Penn Hills (Pittsburgh, Pa.) Running Back
Speedy running back Terrell Roberson is out to prove that he could be another prospect to emerge from tradition power Penn Hills. Hampered this past year by injuries, Roberson will have to make the most of this spring to showcase his talents, but showed Saturday he has the athletic ability to play Division I football. At 5-8, 169 pounds he showed elite speed and quickness, posting a 4.68 40-yards and the days best shuttle with a 4.00, and his size/speed could also translate into lining up at cornerback at the next level.
Gateway (Monroeville, Pa.) Linebacker
At 6-1, 193 pounds, athlete Armstead Williams is another prospect that is emerging from Pittsburgh local power Gateway. Williams came into the combine as a player to watch with offers from Michigan and Maryland to date. Right now he has been more productive on the offensive side of the ball, totaling over 400 yards receiving as a junior but projects as a linebacker on the next level. There is a lot of interest coming his way especially from Penn State and Pittsburgh. Williams best results Saturday were a 4.41 shuttle time and 30.3-inch vertical jump.
Bearden (Knoxville, Tenn.) Running Back
Tennessee running back Devrin Young perhaps made the longest trip to Pittsburgh and did not disappoint with a SPARQ rating of 98.25, showing why Stanford has already extended an offer to the elusive runner. A two-time all-state selection, Young has been extremely consistent running the past two years rushing for over 1,300 yards each year with 40 total touchdowns. Young rated amongst the top performers in several testing categories, running a 4.63 40, 4.03 shuttle, and posting a 33.2-inch vertical, for a rating of 98.25.