Blog Entry

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

Posted on: January 7, 2012 6:12 pm
Edited on: January 8, 2012 1:04 pm

Posted by Bryan Fischer

SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- Plenty of the nation's top recruits defended upon the Alamodome for yet another U.S. Army All-American Bowl and once again they did not disappoint. The final of the three major high school football all-star games wrapped up a busy start to 2012 with a West victory over the East 24-12 before a record crowd of 39,011 that put college bowl games to shame with the amount of talent on the field and the number of people in the stands.

"It was a great week," said Westlake Village (Calif.) wide receiver Jordan Payton. "It's so great to be out here with (the Army), that's the best part. It's an honor to be playing with all these guys, I love them all. I feel like we've been playing forever. It's been the best week of my life and football career."

Payton did not end up with a reception during the game but was one of 14 players to put on a school hat and commit. In the four-star receiver's case, he was one of three players to verbally pledge to California on national television, giving the Golden Bears as big of a win Saturday afternoon as the West squad.

"I think this is going to be real big," Sacramento (Calif.) safety and Maxpreps' number five overall player Shaq Thompson said. "Our class, the 2012 class, is really going to change things."

The top defensive tackle in the country and number eight overall player in the class, Monrovia (Calif.) product Ellis McCarthy was the other commitment.

"I just really like Coach Tosh (Lupoi) ," McCarthy said on NBC. "I like the progam a lot and I've built a relationship with him and the team."

While there was plenty of attention paid to the recruiting story lines taking place behind the end zone, there were also several players who had no trouble finding the area for six points either. The West took the opening drive 44 yards in eight plays and was capped off with a four-yard quarterback keeper by Washington commit Cyler Miles for the game's first points.

The East squad answered right back on the next series, marching down the field in a 10-play, 77-yard drive that saw Norfolk (Va.) linebacker and Virginia commit Kwontie Moore flip over to fullback and take it in for a two-yard touchdown.

"There was some real talent here and it was an honor to be on the same field as them," East quarterback and LSU pledge Gunner Kiel said. "This was the best of the best."

The Columbus (Ind.) signal-caller finished the day 3-of-6 for 71 yards and one interception to lead his team in passing. Kiel was one of several quarterbacks under siege by the opposing defensive line and struggled to stay in the pocket to find time to throw. The number two overall prospect in the class of 2012, he was overshadowed in the game by the only other player above him in the rankings, Hillcrest (Mo.) wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham.

The 6-foot-6, 220-pounder had what wound up as the deciding touchdown late in the 2nd quarter, connecting with Miles on a 79-yard pass with a one-handed grab over future Clemson defensive back Travis Blanks before pulling away for the score. The play was the longest touchdown pass in the bowl's history.

"It was great, some of these guys will probably start wherever they go to school," Green-Beckham said. "I came out here to get ready for next year and try to be the best worker out here.

"It was a big adjustment speed-wise but I wanted to just come out here and keep competing."

Green-Beckham and Miles were named co-MVPs for the victorious West team but the record that will be in future Army Bowl programs was just as meaningful for the quarterback.

"That's a great honor," Miles said. "It's a great feeling, (Green-Beckham) has such a range. You can put it in a lot of places. 6-6, 225, you really can't miss with him."

East defensive back Yuri Wright, who is uncommitted but considering Notre Dame, Michigan and Rutgers among others, also covered Green-Beckham was equally impressed.

"Dorial Green-Beckham is a really good player," Wright said. "I'm not going to lie, he's really good."

Both teams finished about even in the yardage department (202 for the West, 198 for the East) but turnovers turned a close game into a rout. UCLA-bound corner Ishmael Adams had one interception while Texas pledge Kendall Sanders grabbed two to help shut down the East passing game.

With all-star games typically dominated by defensive lines that can force quarterbacks out of the pocket, the West stood up to the test better and was able to help protect Miles, 7-of-8, 155 yards and two total touchdowns, and buy him plenty of time to find his targets.

"The offensive line did great, I'm proud with those guys," he said. "That goes back to coaching during the week. We prepared great and we showed it. The o-line definitely performed today."

"You have to be ready for this, you knew you were going to play against all-stars from across the country and they play big time football," Uncommitted West offensive tackle Zach Banner said. "For you to come out here and not expect it, you're either cocky or you're stupid. I knew what these guys were going to bring and I think I raised my game."


Since: Jan 24, 2010
Posted on: January 24, 2012 8:01 pm

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

Just think a moment.  Are you wondering how a team that went 2-10 last year is still in the hunt for Diggs and Goldman?

Think about it.

Don't criticize.  Just think.

Nothing against the SEC or Texas.  But this is not a big recruiting year for Maryland, and yet.........

Since: Jan 24, 2010
Posted on: January 24, 2012 7:51 pm

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

DGB is a good talent, but face it, he might be a step slow.  Most CB's, especially the ones in the SEC, can keep up or pass him.

Personal opinion, of course.

Since: Jan 24, 2010
Posted on: January 24, 2012 7:49 pm

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

Did anyone see the Terps' players excel last weekend.  Vernon Davis is a beast.  And Torrey excelled as a rook.  Even LaQuan got national chops.

Mike Locksley.....hmmmm.

Since: Jan 20, 2012
Posted on: January 20, 2012 8:39 am

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

His top 2 teams are Arkansas and Mizzo.

Since: Nov 4, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:15 am

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

Dorial Green-Beckham is a wr he will go where he can catch the most headlines and get the most passes so i say he goes to the sooners they are the highest passing team in the ncaa

Since: Sep 19, 2010
Posted on: January 13, 2012 4:31 pm

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

If DGB has his heart in the right place, he will be in Austin ,Texas with Jonathan Grey getting ready to lead the Longhorns to another BCS Championship! GO HORNS!!!!!!!!!

Since: Oct 16, 2006
Posted on: January 12, 2012 1:03 pm

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

Im sorry, next weekend, DGB will be taking his only visit in his Arkansas.

Since: Oct 16, 2006
Posted on: January 12, 2012 1:01 pm

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

DGB is going to be a Razorback, and a thorn in the side of SEC teams, GO HOGS ! He will be on campus this weekend.

Since: Dec 8, 2006
Posted on: January 12, 2012 6:48 am

West takes Army All-American Bowl 24-12

If Dorial Green-Beckham doesn't go to West Virginia, he is making a mistake.  Granted, I think he will excel almost anywhere.  But, imagine what he would do in a Holgerson offense?  Oh my!

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