We are officially into December and the page has been turned on youth careers. High School and the football futures of many prospects are getting ready to hit the accelerate button. The prospect landscape is starting to become clearer and…
We are officially into December and the page has been turned on youth careers. High School and the football futures of many prospects are getting ready to hit the accelerate button. The prospect landscape is starting to become clearer and below is a look at some class of 2027 prospects (athletes in their eighth-grade school year) that have come across my desk. As football recruiting and evaluating continues to change, the eighth-grade year is becoming a pivotal time for young athletes to garner early attention from universities. Here’s a look at some prospects that are on the trajectory to be playing a high level of football for years to come.
I’m not exactly sure how, but all 6-foot-6 and 295-pounds ofwas hiding in plain sight during the regular season. Was figuratively and literally an enormous reason for the success of the Old Bridge Rebels this past season, as the team finished 10-0 and won the New Jersey Suburban Youth Football League championship. There’s not much to say that isn’t obvious from looking at him. Absolutely massive eighth-grade athlete, that should become one of the highest recruited kids in New Jersey in the class of 2027. He has the length, weight and frame to become elite. As always with the big guys this young, cleaning up footwork and staying healthy will prove to be vital. In addition to continuing to sharpen the fundamentals that everyone will have at the next level, not just having success from being the biggest kid on the field. Remember this name — I think he’s the future of the Offensive Line position in New Jersey.
I think it’s a safe bet to say that majority of the country thinks “middle school” football is sixth-eighth grade. However, in some states or parts of states, there are blended “junior high” teams that have ninth-graders playing because of how their school district is set up. Arkansas is one of those states, however playing against athletes a year older didn’t stop 2027 prospect Joseph Accelus from having a banner year for Monticello Middle School. The 5-foot-7, 150-pounder ran for nearly 1,000 yards this season as an eighth-grade back starting, and playing against teams comprised of majority ninth-graders. At this time, he doesn’t have the elite speed or size that some other 2027 running backs posses already, but he certainly is in the plus when it comes to shiftiness. Quick-footed and impressive change of direction while in mid-run. Versatility is also a plus, as he can be split out wide and used in the return game.
If you follow pre-high school football in any capacity or unless you live under a rock, you have likely heard of the OC Buckeyes program in California. Better known as “Juice County”, over the last several years this program has produced a ton of high school All-Americans and Division 1 prospects. Interior Offensive Lineman Isaia Vandermade looks to be one of over a dozen on this year’s 14U team that will follow suite. A reclass from the 2026 class, Vandermade is a 6-foot-2, 270-pounder with some exceptional feet for a young, big prospect. From what I’ve seen, it looks like he took snaps as a Guard and Center this year. The ability to pull and kick out or wall off a defender is not an easy task, snapping the ball and then pulling from the Center position is even more difficult. Expect to see continued dominant from Vandermade somewhere in the Trinity League next fall.
A 5-foot-11, 175-pound signal caller from South Florida, who wrapped up a very solid pre-high school career with the Plantation Wildcats. In four games this season, accounted for seven touchdowns and 603 yards of total offense with a 76% completion center. Miller is a thick, well-put together kid who looks like more like a Linebacker on the field than a Quarterback. Understanding where he may be limited in height, he zips an absolute dart while throwing on the run. His mobility is something that certainly doesn’t go unnoticed when watching his film. I’m a very big fan of just how hard he can throw the football on those short and intermediate routes. On the contrary, he also throws a deep ball with some nice touch. All of that said, I wouldn’t completely rule out a position change for him at the high school level. With his build and ability to run, he could be a nice fit at several positions. It’s looking like he’ll be at Cardinal Gibbons in Fort Lauderdale for high school.
When an eighth-grader is 6-foot-4 and weighs between 320-340 pounds depending on what was for lunch, there has to be excitement about him. That’s the case here with big Tyler Ford. Is set to start training with Kevin McAlmont of Big League, who started to emerge as one of the top Offensive Linbe trainers in the greater Atlanta area. Needless to say he’s absolutely massive right now and shedding some weight will be better for him in the long run. His size is unquestionably the thing that has me most excited, but in watching some older clips of him, he’s not just a big-body there is athletic ability in there too. Often times guys this big just bend over at the waste, but Ford can bend his knees and shows a decent amount of flexibility to a degree. His feet are pretty good too, but right now I’d line him up inside until the quickness picks up–which it will through training. Ford has big time written all over him, after he gets up to speed with some of the fundamental physical things.
Listed anywhere between 6-foot-4 and 6-foot-6 and weighing 185-200-pounds depending on your sources, Ruston Junior High prospect Ahmad Hudson looks destined for big things. Yes, this is a football site and I talk about football players, but I’d be shocked if his future wasn’t in basketball. The Louisiana native has been throwing down dunks since the sixth-grade and now as an eighth-grader, he’s rocking the rim as much as you see at the college and NBA levels. Getting back to the gridiron, he plays Quarterback on offense and Defensive End on defense–both at a high level. He doesn’t have the prettiest mechanics in the world as a Quarterback, but he gets the job done. With his height and length, he sees over the line of the scrimmage and produced some serious whip on his passes. As a Defensive End, he keeps blockers off him with good hand usage and separation. Watching his clips, whether it was on the football field or the basketball court, he showed an elite amount of agility for a 2027 prospect with that much length to be moving around. Again, I’m 99% sure his future is in basketball, but the kid can play football too.
A prospect that I personally like a lot out of Nevada, Trent Walker is a kid I would recommend keeping an eye on. The 6-foot-2, 170-pound Wide Receiver/Outside Linebacker/Safety trifecta is a bigger, athletic skill-position kid with some very good ball skills. Has played the latter part of his pre-high school career with the Vegas Strong team, a perennial powerhouse in American Youth Football. Walker has had some minor knee issues over the last year or so, but they shouldn’t be a hindrance going forward and is set to be 100% as Vegas Strong gets ready for the AYF National tournament in early December. He has the ability to take over games in all three phases, as he also can be a menace in the return game if not kept in check. Summing it up the best way I can: He has the potential to be a very good player and where he ends up playing will all depend on how he fills out over the next few years. With his frame and skill set, your good is as good as mine. Stay tuned.