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May 9, 2014
VTO Virginia: What to watch
By Gabriel Hiatt
The invitation only camp in Dumfries, Va., is an opportunity for the best performers from regional VTO Sports Combines to test their skills against a field of competitors hailing from the greater Washington, D.C., metropolitan area and beyond.
The majority of attendees will commute from schools in Washington, Virginia and Maryland, but teenagers from the Midwest and the Eastern seaboard will also travel to Dumfries to raise their recruiting profiles. Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Georgia will all be represented.
Class of 2015 DE Eric Assoua might be the biggest name in camp. The 6-foot-1, 221-pound pass-rusher from St. Johns College High School is a three-star prospect who in 2013 helped his school advance to the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference championship game for the first time since 1991. Assoua holds offers Toledo and Western Michigan and has received interest from seven other schools, including Virginia Tech, Maryland, Penn State and Rutgers.
Assoua will encounter an offensive line group loaded with size. Class of 2015 OT Tristan Taylor from Christchurch (Va.) High School stands 6-foot-4 and weighs 270 pounds. He has early interest from James Madison, Liberty and Richmond.
Guard Derek Dressler boasts college-ready size and strength. The class of 2015 OL is 6-foot-2, tips the scales at 315 pounds and can squat 500 pounds. In Dumfries, Dressler will try to turn interest -- he's heard from Virginia, Virginia Tech, Old Dominion and James Madison -- into offers.
Class of 2016 OT Josh Ball will be hard to miss. The 6-foot-6, 312-pound lineman from Stafford High School in Fredericksburg, Va., will drum up attention if he performs like he did at the Baltimore-Washington Rivals Camp Series stop, where he displayed a sound base and a solid punch. At 6-5, 289 pounds, DeMatha Catholic High School (Md.) OT Elijah Johnson is another player with prototypical size.
Two quarterbacks from Maryland with contrasting styles will make the drive down I-95. Class of 2015 QB Ryan Bowles from St. Mary's Ryken is a 6-foot-4 pocket passer with a two-star rating. Fellow junior Alex Mason is more of a running threat. The 6-foot-1, 200-pound recruit from Oakdale High School has interest from Albany, Duquesne and Indiana State.
Receiver Matthew Millea will make the trip from Avon, Conn. The two-star prospect brings a big frame at 6-foot-2, 190 pounds, and has already caught the eyes of several Ivy League institutions. Millea -- the eighth-ranked prospect in Connecticut -- has received interest from Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton and Yale along with Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.
C.D. Hylton High School cornerback A.J. Wooten will have a short commute from nearby Woodbridge, Va. The two-star DB will use his quicks -- he has a 4.38 second shuttle time -- to contain the camp's wideouts.