Every year, college programs are not only evaluating players but also trying to determine which position athletes project to at the next level. Several are capable of playing multiple spots at the next level and here we take a look at some of those top athletes from across the state.
Dallas Craddieth, 6’1, 193, WR/S, 2018, Hazelwood Central
Cradieth is one of the purest two-way players in the state. He’s someone who is constantly moving the ball on offense and making big tackles and important deflections on defense. That kind of play can’t be overlooked. He’s just too involved. WRs struggle when he guards them making QBs look to the other side of the field or hand it off to the team’s RB. He’s also a handful as a WR. He has good hands, quick feet, and the athleticism to beat anyone who covers him. He has numerous high major offers.
Arvell Ferguson, 6’5, 210, DE/TE, 2019, Kirkwood
Ferguson is one of the youngest players on this list. He’s also just as productive as most of the seniors. There’s a certain energy about him translates perfectly in positions across the board. He’s mainly a DE in high school, but he offers more than just a pass rush on the outside. He is excellent at reading people and can outrun most in the open field. This kid could wind up playing a familiar position or possibly TE or a LB. Even though he’s a DI prospect, we don’t think enough scouts are talking about him. Hopefully that will change.
Jacob Sykes, 6’4, 250, DL/TE, 2018, Rockhurst
Sykes is among our favorite two-way players who we believe can make things happen on both sides of the ball. At 6’4, 250-pounds, Sykes lined up at a wide variety of positions last year, serving as a run-stuffing interior defensive lineman, a passing rushing end, a pass catching tight end and a blocking fullback. That versatility has continued this year, and we can’t get enough of it. He can make important catches, blocks, tackles, and is hard for opponents to stop when he gets going in open space. There’s no doubt in our mind Sykes will bring his versatility to the next level. He was an early commit to Harvard.
Tionne Harris, 5’9, 190, ATH, 2018, Vianney
When Harris is looking downfield in the scramble at a fully covered receiver such as Zach Zerwig or Kyren Williams, it’s hard to think of any quarterback that handles the pressure as well as he does. He eyes the options and makes the best decision. Sometimes this includes running it for himself with his quick bounce and fancy footwork. Plays such as these that let us know Harris can excel in more than one position. Since he isn’t very tall for a QB, it’s possible he will see time in one of the skill positions. Harris committed to Army this summer but has since opened up his recruiting.
Brody Parker, 6’6, 235, ATH, 2018, Blue Springs South (pictured)
Parker has committed to play at Southern Illinois and while several football experts we have talked to feel he may move to another position in college, he actually might not. He’s been impressive in the games we’ve seen him play this season at quarterback. On the other hand he’s a big, strong athlete who also looks like a hybrid WR/TE type as well.
Rico Payton, 6’1, 165, WR/CB, 2018, Lindbergh
Payton might be one of the state’s premier cover corners, able to play on an island and lock guys up. But he’s also an elite offensive playmaker. He is a talented receiver and the team’s most effective running back as well, putting together several big games carrying the ball. He has rushed for 458 yards, is averaging 10.2 ypc and has scored 10 touchdowns, and has also hauled in 20 passes for 508 yards and eight TDs. He committed to Southern Illinois on Aug. 17.
Isaiah Williams, 5’11, 165, ATH, 2019, Trinity
He’s the Reggie Bush or Devin Hester of high school football in Missouri, capable of exciting, thrilling runs and plays. He is a talented quarterback who shows a terrific arm and good accuracy, but he is at his best keeping plays alive, buying time for receivers down field and when it’s not there, taking off for crazy runs. If you haven’t watched his highlights, check them out. There’s a reason he has 50-some high major offers.
Evan Ratermann, 6’1, 185, WR/DB, 2018, Rock Bridge
An athletic playmaker, Ratermann is a rangy, athletic free safety who covers a lot of ground and does a terrific job of tracking the ball in the air and making plays. At a wide receiver, he is athletic and plays much bigger than his listed height as he is able to high point the ball in the air. He is terrific in the open field and is able to break tackles and put together big runs after the catch.