Talent at Pleasant Grove

Talent at Pleasant Grove

The Spartans of Pleasant Grove, (Ala.) had an 8-2 regular season in 2006 and went 1-1 in the state championship play-offs. Coach Jim Elgin talks with ScoutSouth.com about a couple of his up and coming stars Brandon Lewis and Kedric Murry and the 2007 season.

"Brandon [Lewis] is a 6-3, 260-pound defensive end and tight end," coach Elgin said. "Brandon is a pretty good player for us. He played defensive end for us last year and had 88 tackles, 18 for loss with 12 sacks, and he actually had two interceptions. We played him at tight end or slot receiver for one of our games in the play-offs, and he had eight catches for about 110 yards and a touchdown."

"The year before, as a sophomore, he played wide receiver. We moved him to defensive end because we needed him there."

Lewis ran in the 4.7 range at summer camps in 2006. Coach Elgin talked where he thought Lewis would fit on the next level.

"His preference is to play defensive end," he said. "I told him, "Brandon when those people see you catch the football they may move you to tight end". Of course, that will all depend on what their needs are, wherever he goes. His preference is to play defensive end."

"He went to Alabama's camp last summer. Before the staff change they were really after him. Once the staff changed, coach [Kevin] Steele has been down here and coach [Major] Applewhite has called. We sent some tape, and he is going to their Junior Day this weekend."

"He is going to Auburn's Junior Day on the 10th of March."

"No offers, not yet. My guess is that when he goes some places, probably this summer when he goes to their individual senior camps is when it's going to happen for him."

"He's taking the ACT this spring. He hasn't taken it yet. He's a basketball player and our basketball season just ended. He's going to take it in June, but grade-wise he's fine."

Kedric Murry is another star for the Spartans, and Elgin has big plans for his bookends this season.

"Kedric is 6-4 about 240-pounds," Elgin said. "He is a two-year starter for us right now at tight end and probably the biggest area of improvement he had last year from his sophomore to his junior year was his blocking."

"When a kid that big gets on you he's pretty good with his feet. He can catch the ball as well. I think Kedric had 28 catches for us this year and that is kind of odd for our tight end. We had an 1,800 yard rusher (Frank Warren), so we didn't throw the ball a whole lot. He might be a sleeper that people are going to get because of his size."

Elgin talked of Kedric's best attribute, "The best thing about him right now is catching the ball. He's got good hands, and he catches the ball over the middle well. He's a big kid. It's not an issue of going across the middle and people kind of knocking him off his routes or anything cause he's so big."

Pleasant Grove loses a big weapon this year with the departure of Frank Warren and is a little challenged in the defensive secondary, but Elgin addresses that and feels pretty good about his team's outlook for the 2007 season.

"I think we are going to be fine," he said. "We're returning about 13-14 starters. We lost a lot of our offensive line kids and all three of our secondary people signed with Alabama State, Texas Southern and that type level. We've got to replace them and our offensive line and obviously our running back, Frank [Warren] went to Grambling."

"I think we are going to be a little more pass oriented. We are going to be in a double slot formation with Brandon and Kedric being the slot kids. We're going to try and match them up with outside linebackers. (laughing) I think we will be fine there on offense."

"Defensively, our front eight will be fine. We've just got to find those people in the secondary that can do the things that we ask them to do. We blitz and play a lot of man, which is kind of unusual for kids to come out of high school and know how to play man a lot. Those are kind of the areas that we have really got to make sure that we get covered this spring."

ScoutSouth.com--Your source for Alabama high school football.

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