Offers flowing for Hopper and Dawson

Originally Published: March 18, 2011
By Jamie Newberg | ESPN Recruiting

Phillip O. Berry Academy (Charlotte, N.C.) is blessed to have two big-time 2012 recruits in Germone Hopper, who stars on offense, and defensive standout Nick Dawson.

"They are two great kids," said Andrew Howard, Berry Academy's head coach. "Their work ethic is amazing. Both of them. They are in the weight room even when it's closed. I can't say enough about them."

Hopper (6-foot, 165 pounds) is listed as an athlete but projects as a wide receiver or cornerback. Dawson says his teammate is as explosive as they come.

"Oh, man, is he ever," Dawson said. "Germone is everything you want as an athlete. He can score from anywhere and has electric moves."

Another big plus to Hopper's game is the willingness to get better. He's always working hard to improve his game.

"Germone really studies a lot of film and knows the game so well," Howard said. "At this stage I think he's very advanced. He has great vision, can catch and run. He can make people miss and is just a well rounded athlete. Germone is the type of player where I could put him anywhere on the field and he will give you 110 percent and do whatever you ask."

"He always wants to learn. I think he's best suited as a slot receiver because you want the ball is his hands in space. He makes tremendous things happen and does things on the football field that amazes people watching."

According to Howard, Hopper currently has 15 scholarship offers: Clemson, Oregon, West Virginia, North Carolina, N.C. State, Auburn, Illinois, Louisville, Maryland, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech, and Virginia. Hopper said he grew up a fan of the Clemson Tigers.

"They are my favorite team," Hopper said. "It's because of my uncle. He turned me on to them when I was young. As a matter of fact, they were the first team that offered me and that was so exciting. You can't do any better than get an offer from your dream school. But I am going to keep an open mind with the recruiting process and take it all in."

Hopper has already visited the Tigers as well as Virginia Tech. He hopes to get to the Clemson spring game next month and maybe even the Hokies' spring game as well. Hopper would also like to check out both Alabama and Auburn.

"FSU called last week," Hopper said. "I know that South Carolina and Alabama are recruiting me hard but they haven't offered yet."

Howard calls Dawson his "gentle giant". At 6-3 and 235 pounds, Dawson mans the middle and is a force defensively.

"Nick's as a leader is his way, by example," Howard said. "He's not a big talker. Nick just wants to get out and play. His size is amazing and you can't find his size in too many places."

Hopper says Dawson is the guy they want to get off the bus first because he just doesn't look like your average high school football player.

"The No. 1 thing about Nick is just seeing him," Hopper said. "He looks like a very intimidating guy because of his size. But he can play. For as big as he is he can play sideline to sideline."

Dawson says there is more to his game than just being a big guy.

"Yeah I can hit," Dawson said. "And I can move all over the field. But I can cover and get that interception and do whatever I can for my team. Some teams like me in the middle and others like me on the outside. It doesn't really matter to me. I just want to play ball."

Dawson has had a few more opportunities to get out and see schools then his teammate Hopper. He has already tripped to Clemson, Louisville, Kentucky, North Carolina, N.C. State and South Carolina. He has trips planned to visit both Tennessee and Auburn.

"I have gotten a good jump on the recruiting process," Dawson said. "I loved Clemson and I love coach [Kevin] Steele. We had a great one-on-one [conversation]. I would say of the other visits Louisville was No. 2. That was a great trip."

Dawson claims offers from Louisville, Kentucky, NC State, Clemson, Virginia, Auburn, Maryland, Illinois, and Tennessee.

"Miami may have offered but I am not clear on it yet so I have to see. Right now I am open and just looking for a school with tradition and a great defensive scheme. They also have to have my major (engineering)."