Tag Archives: Quay Chambers

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Football Friday: Wide Receiver Competition

DSC_0050-001Duke's primary offensive formation features a single running back, a tight end and three wide receivers. Max McCaffrey is the lone returning starter at the wide receiver position resulting in two open starting slots.

A balanced offensive attack has been key to Duke's success over the past several seasons. In 2014, the Blue Devils scored 47 touchdowns from scrimmage with 23 coming through the air and 24 on the ground. On plays from scrimmage, Duke passed the ball 49 percent and ran 51 percent of the time. Duke gained 2,814 yards through the air, while rushing for 2,364.

While an increased emphasis on the running game is expected in 2015, maintaining offensive balance via the passing game will be a prime objective for Head Coach David Cutcliffe and Offensive Coordinator Scottie Montgomery. When the running game is clicking, the play action pass becomes a valuable weapon.

Max McCaffrey has 65 career receptions for 698 yards and seven touchdowns. He is a sure handed receiver capable of working in minimum space over the middle of the field. McCaffrey recorded a career best seven receptions for 79 yards and two touchdowns in Duke's 41-3 victory over Kansas. He has started 25 games over his first three seasons as a Blue Devil.

The receiving corps will be young so McCaffrey leveraging his experience to provide on field and locker room leadership will be vital to ensuring the receivers maximize their productivity.

Johnell Barnes' bio at GoDuke.com lists him as a starting wide receiver and he is the odds on favorite to be a top receiver in 2015. Barnes has shown flashes of brilliance over his first two years so a break out season as a junior would not be a surprise. Barnes is a strong runner who can gain significant yards after catching the ball.

As a true freshman, in 2013, Barnes averages 14.5 yards per reception with a long of 50 yards. His yards per reception decreased to 10.3 during the 2014 season, but his total number of catches increased. Barnes has caught 38 passes for 454 yards and one touchdown over the first two seasons of his career.

Chris Taylor is a redshirt freshmen who has impressed the staff since his arrival on campus prior to the 2014 season. His bio at GoDuke.com lists him as a starting wide receiver. Taylor has good size at 6'1" with all reports leaking out of practice indicating he is an excellent route runner who possesses all the requisite physical skills to develop into a special player.

When practice opens in August; McCaffrey, Barnes and Taylor will be designated as the starters. Will they be the starters in New Orleans on September 3? The question this article seeks to explore: who steps up and challenges for one of those starting spots?

Here are the candidates wide receivers coach Jeffrey Farris has to work with:

Anthony Nash is 6'5" and fast. Those are tremendous physical skill sets, which set him up to compete to become an impact player. He is currently listed as a second string wide receiver. Nash, a rising redshirt junior, has caught five passes for 47 yards in 16 career games. He has the tools to be a deep threat, which can stretch defenses vertically, if he can take the next developmental step. Nash is definitely a player to keep an eye on in 2015.

Trevon Lee is a highly thought of redshirt freshman currently listed as a second string wide receiver. He was considered a leading candidate to play as a true freshmen last season but remained on the sidelines due to Duke being deep and talented at wide receiver. Lee will see the field and produce results in 2015.

Ryan Smith is currently listed as the second string slot receiver. He played as a true freshman and has caught three passes for 41 yards. He has returned four punts for 90 yards. Smith struggled with an ankle injury for part of 2013. In the victory over Georgia Tech in Atlanta, he recovered two Yellow Jackets onside kicks to help preserve Duke's lead.

Quay Chambers is another big receiver at 6'3" 220. He spent his redshirt freshman year at quarterback before transitioning to wide receiver in the Spring of 2014. Coach Cutcliffe described him as an exceptional athlete back in August 2013 after Chambers ran 63 yards for a touchdown in a team scrimmage. Chambers possesses explosive big play potential and seems tailor made to see action as the motion receiver, a position where his running abilities could be utilized via the jet sweep or end around.

Terrence Alls had a terrific spring practice highlighted by his being named most improved offensive player. Unfortunately, he was subsequently suspended from game competition for a violation of team rules so his status for the 2015 season is currently unknown. His status is expected to be updated prior to the season commencing, but there is no guarantee.

And there are two true freshmen on the roster who will head to practice in August intent on jumping over the competition to earn immediate playing time:

T.J. Rahming shined at the U.S. Army All American Bowl scoring two touchdowns against top level talent. He is dimunitive at 5'10" 165 so adding strength will have to be a priority for his development. Rahming is an interesting situation as his size definitely singles him out as a redshirt candidate; however, his talent level indicates he could make an immediate impact.

Aaron Young is 6'2" 200 and a redshirt candidate in 2015.

The 2015 receiving corps will be a young group, but they are a group with a great deal of unproven talent which equates to unlimited potential or a high ceiling. It will be important for the group to take advantage of the favorable early season schedule, four home games in a row after the opener at Tulane, to work out the kinks in order to be firing on all eight cylinders when the calendar turns to October and the conference schedule starts in earnest.

Football Friday: Wide Receiver Competition

Monroe dual-threat QB Quay Chambers was the first commitment in Duke's class of 2013

Friday Night Lights: Late-season action and, for some, Playoff Time!

 

Monroe dual-threat QB Quay Chambers was the first commitment in Duke's class of 2013

Just about everybody in high school football is either concluding their regular seasons and heading into the playoffs, or the post-season has actually begun.  A number of future Blue Devils were fortunate enough to have their high school teams advance to the playoffs in their respective leagues.  As usual, BDN brings you the results and the scoop on all of it.

Starting close to home in North Carolina, Statesville and CB Breon Borders advanced to the third round of the playoffs by rallying to a 41-29 victory over Asheville Ervin.  However, things will get a lot tougher next week as the 12-1 Greyhounds travel to Belmont to face top-seeded South Point.  Borders told BDN, "LOCKDOWN! I myself could've done better as always, but had about 5 tackles and 2 pass deflections - a pretty good game.  On to the 3rd round!"

Undefeated Jacksonville Northside advanced in the 2-AA playoffs with a 41-28 win over Bethel North Pitt .  Here is a feature article on Northside's TD catching machine and Blue Devil target (class of 2014) Josh Cabrera.

Over in Charlotte, CB Bryon Fields and Providence Day [private] had their dreams of repeating as state champions dashed as they fell in the title game to Charlotte Christian, 24-14.

QB Quay Chambers and Monroe High advanced with a 53-0 drubbing of East Surry in a Class 1-AA playoff tilt.

Two-way player Quay Mann, whose Northern Nash squad has completed their season, told BDN, "In our nine games, I finished with 987 all-purpose yards, 5 rushing TDs, 3 special teams TDs on returns, and 30 tackles. I only was thrown at four times all season while I was at corner.  I intercepted one pass & two of them I deflected."

Moving out of North Carolina, Evrett Edwards and his Woodbridge (VA) squad couldn't get anything going and fell to 3-3 in a 17-0 loss to Battlefield.  Said Edwards after the game, "I played well, almost 200 all purpose yards, but we lost.  I'm ready to suit up and play some college ball now."

2014 running back Shai McKenzie and Washington (PA) came back from an early deficit, and thumped Seton-LaSalle in a quarterfinal playoff game, 33-17 to remain undefeated.  McKenzie had a huge night, rushing for 201 yards on 30 carries, including a 56-yard TD.

WR Johnell Barnes and his Ft. Myers (FL) Dunbar teammates ended their excellent 8-2 regular season on a sour note with a 19-0 loss to Immokalee High.  Dunbar now preps for the playoffs, which begin next week against Orlando Jones.

The Walker School (Marietta,GA), featuring star DT Mike Ramsay, completed the first perfect regular season in school history at 10-0 with a 21-0 shutout of Gordon Lee. The Wolverines now have two weeks off before their playoff action begins.  Though Ramsay had to sit this one out due to having been ejected from the previous game, he was nonetheless ecstatic.  "We are region champions! I got to sit up above the box where we film and do a little coaching/scouting!"

Moving to Texas: In their regular season finale, Reagan High (San Antonio,TX) and star OT Sterling Korona lost a heartbreaker to Roosevelt, 24-21.  The Rattlers' playoff action begins next Friday night in the Alamodome against Smithson Valley.

OT Austin Davis and his Mansfield (TX) Tigers fell to De Soto 37-23 to close out its regular season schedule. Davis is looking forward to the playoffs, though, telling BDN, "We lost to the number 2 team in the nation, Desoto, by 13. We were up 23 to 22 with 8 mins left; we just couldn't finish! We actually struggled on offense! We couldn't capitalize! We believed we were the better team! But it is playoffs for us now!'

And heading further west to California, WR Darren Andrews and Bishop Amat (La Puente, CA) hung tough with traditional power Long Beach Poly before bowing 40-25 in the first round of the CIF playoffs.

RB Joseph Ajeigbe rushed for a 5-yard TD helping Norco avenge last season's playoff loss to Redlands East Valley by turning the tables on the Wildcates 50-22 in their Inland Division playoff opener.  Ajeigbe piled up 144 yards rushing in the first half alone.

That's it for this week.  Congrats to all the future Blue Devils (committed and those still deciding) on their performances so far, and good luck to those still alive in the playoffs!  See ya next week! [/private]

Friday Night Lights – Playoff Report

This week's coverage starts with the 2013 in-state commits and 2014 prospects as the North Carolina High School Athletics Association (NCHSAA) playoffs kicked off on Friday night. The North Carolina section looks at three verbal commits and two recruiting targets.[private]

Breon Borders [Statesville (10-1) versus Enka (5-6)]: Cornerback Borders intercepted a pass in the third quarter as Statesville advanced to the second round with a 65 - 12 rout of Enka. "We won big. They didn't throw to me at all, but I expected that," said Borders. "The one time they did throw it I intercepted it."

Quay Chambers [Monroe (8-3) versus Bishop McGuinness (5-6)]: Chambers threw two touchdown passes as Monroe blitzed McGuinness 69 - 0.

Bryon Fields [Charlotte Providence Day (7-4) at Country Day (9-1)]: Providence Day won 24 - 14, and cornerback Bryon Fields described his game performance as follows: "I had 200 plus yards of total offense with 190 on 13 carries, mostly out of Wildcat. And I had several tackles and a pass break-up on defense. We play Charlotte Christian next week for the private school State Championship."

Josh Cabrera [Jacksonville Northside (11-0) versus Croatan (6-4)]: Wide Receiver Cabrera caught two touchdown passes as Northside defeated Croatan 47 - 10. Overall, he had three receptions for 64 yards with the touchdowns covering 12 and 10 yards. Cabrera also caught a 2-point conversion pass after Northside's fourth touchdown.

Kendall Hinton [Southern Durham (6-4) versus Wilmington Hoggard (8-2)]:  Quarterback Hinton threw two interceptions in Southern's Durham's 28-26 defeat at the hands of Hoggard.  When added to a fumble and a missed PAT, there were just too many mistakes for Southern Durham to overcome. Their season ends at 6-5.

Back to your regular scheduled coverage:

In Virginia, Jake Kite and Evrett Edwards were in action attempting to help their teams secure spots in the upcoming VHSL playoffs.

Kite had a big game as Hidden Valley defeated Cave Spring 21 -12. He ran for a 20 yard touchdown on a reverse. "We earned a first round bye for getting the win last night," said Kite. "I had two rushes for 62 yards and nine tackles."

Woodbridge knocked off previously unbeaten Stonewall Jackson 17 - 7. "We beat the ninth ranked team in the state to clinch a playoff berth," commented Edwards. "I had an interception and three tackles."

Moving south to Florida, Johnell Barnes and his Dunbar teammates improved to 8-1 with a 35 - 0 victory over Booker, while T.J. Douglas led Fort Myers to a 48 - 7 win over Bishop Verot.

"It went well," Wide Receiver Barnes said. "We won 35 - 0. I had two catches for about 65 yards and a touchdown. I played quarterback mostly the whole fourth quarter. District champs."

Douglas and his Fort Myers teammates failed to qualify for the post season.

In Georgia, Walker improved to 9-0 on the season with a 20 - 3 win over Mount Paran Christian. Defensive Tackle Mike Ramsay was ejected from the game for a late hit out of bounds. He describes the play, "I had a couple of really nice tackles, but I got tossed...I ran the kid out and we were both falling - it was an awful call in the middle of the fourth quarter, but an amazing game."

Down in Texas, offensive lineman Sterling Korona and his Reagan (San Antonio) teammates defeated Churchill 37 - 24. "Our offensive line had a monster night," Korona said. "Our running back, Elijah Ball, had 330 yards and three touchdowns, and our quarterback had two touchdowns on the three or four passes he threw."

Also in Texas, offensive lineman Austin Davis and Mansfield prevailed 27 - 20 over Cedar Hills. Davis commented, "We have won four straight and are doing great as a team!"

Out west in California, wide receiver Darren Andrews and Bishop Amat fell to Notre Dame 49 - 28, while running back Joseph Ajeigbe and Norco defeated King 29 - 8.

In Pennsylvania, for the second week in a row, 2014 recruiting target Shai McKenzie rushed for six touchdowns. His Washington (PA) team defeated Shady Side Academy 47-12 in WPIAL Class AA playoff action.[/private]

Monroe dual-threat QB Quay Chambers was the first commitment in Duke's class of 2013

Duke Football lands 1st commitments in 2013 from Monroe QB Quay Chambers and TX OL Austin Davis

Monroe dual-threat QB Quay Chambers is the first commitment in Duke's class of 2013

Coach Cutcliffe added his first commitments in the Duke class of 2013 today as Monroe QB Quay Chambers and Texas OL Austin Davis committed to the Blue Devils.

Chambers is a 6'3" 190 pound dual-threat prospect from Monroe High School, the same program that has produced current Duke players Issac Blakeney and Jamison Crowder. The Blue Devils were the first program to offer Chambers a scholarship back in February, and hosted the speedy athlete on an unofficial visit on March 3. After missing most of his sophomore year with an ankle injury, Chambers finished his junior season at Monroe with 1,776 yards and 23 touchdowns through the air and 1,221 yards and 16 touchdowns on the ground. His efforts earned him All-Conference honors for his junior season. The Blue Devils will likely bring Chambers in as an athlete, as they have with Crowder and Blakeney. "It wasn't a hard decision because Duke was my favorite school growing up and I always wanted to go there, so when they offered me, I had to take advantage of it," Chambers told BDN Saturday afternoon. "Coach Cutcliffe and Coach Lubick have been recruiting me and talking about playing QB or WR." Chambers was also receiving interest from UNC, NC State, and ECU.

Mansfield OL Austin Davis committed to Duke on Saturday

Davis is a 6'5" 295 pound offensive lineman who projects as a center at the college level, but can also play guard and tackle. Davis received his first scholarship offer from Duke and had been receiving interest from Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, SMU, and Georgia Tech. The big prospect gave his pledge to Coach Cutcliffe during his unofficial visit on Saturday to take in the Blue Devils' spring scrimmage. A two-time 1st Team All-District selection, his highlight video can be seen here.

Check back with BDN for more on the newest Blue Devils.