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FOOTBALL SUMMER WORKOUTS


Ray Icaza

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I know the focus on building a top tier team seems to rely heavily on the transfer/recruiting piece during the spring and summer.  However, the work effort put in during the 2 summer months before fall are a very important component for success in the upcoming season.  It will be here before you know it and the participation level, especially by your seniors, leaders, star players, etc... are key in setting the right example.  At Osceola, our voluntary summer workouts began yesterday so I made it a point to check them out today and as usual the team is out in force which I think contributes to our success rather than depending on mass (a dozen or more) transfers to bolster the program.  Again, we probably have as many good players transfer out as opposed to transferring in but based on what we do have we should be a playoff team once again; this was evident in our Spring Jamboree last month.  Hard work along with a great attitude is a winning formula and we certainly have a history of that.  GO KOWBOYS!!

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This article just appeared in today's Sentinel sports page featuring two kids that moved into Kissimmee during the spring of their freshmen year and began attending OHS.  It is also important to hold on to the best talent you have as speaking to several dads, many local high schools have tried unsuccessfully to get them both to transfer.   These two seniors along with a few others are what I value as leadership by example.  Melendez is being pushed hard by Michigan, OU, Ole Miss, Auburn and others to flip him away from Miami.   He did only play one half of a regular season game last year but racked up 7 tackles against Treasure Coast in that half and had about a dozen in the KOC against Apopka the week before.  Robert Lee chose FAU over Kentucky, UCF and several others as they were after him early in his sophomore year.   The injury bug to several top players didn't help last year but they are back for their senior years and hope they remain healthy.   Below is the link for the article featuring these two.

Osceola LBs Elijah Melendez, Robert Lee also best friends (orlandosentinel.com)

 

 

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On 6/12/2024 at 12:06 PM, Ray Icaza said:

I know the focus on building a top tier team seems to rely heavily on the transfer/recruiting piece during the spring and summer.  However, the work effort put in during the 2 summer months before fall are a very important component for success in the upcoming season.  It will be here before you know it and the participation level, especially by your seniors, leaders, star players, etc... are key in setting the right example.  At Osceola, our voluntary summer workouts began yesterday so I made it a point to check them out today and as usual the team is out in force which I think contributes to our success rather than depending on mass (a dozen or more) transfers to bolster the program.  Again, we probably have as many good players transfer out as opposed to transferring in but based on what we do have we should be a playoff team once again; this was evident in our Spring Jamboree last month.  Hard work along with a great attitude is a winning formula and we certainly have a history of that.  GO KOWBOYS!!

be curious to know who left the ktown boys and why would they leave?  saw big ol from down the road from you guys transfered in, curious as to why he would leave after his stock has risen this spring.  who left, who came in?

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10 hours ago, h8r said:

be curious to know who left the ktown boys and why would they leave?  saw big ol from down the road from you guys transfered in, curious as to why he would leave after his stock has risen this spring.  who left, who came in?

Two upcoming Juniors to TFA (likely starters) were Blaze Jones 6'2" 225(DE/OLB) and Gerard Gearity 6'5" 280 (OL).  Neither makes any sense to me, but I think Blaze wanted more opportunities at LB where we are pretty stacked and it appears they are providing that.  Another upcoming Junior starter, Alijah "Flash" Jenkins 5'8" 160 slot receiver and kick returner to Jones where they have a top rated QB hence maybe more receiving opportunities although competing for that spot vs Vernell "Trey" Brown III; quite a task so wonder how that shakes out over the summer.  Another upcoming Junior Zion Matthews 5'11" 190 (RB) to Dr. Phillips where he does have a good shot at starting, whereas it was impossible with Taevion on our roster.  Tre Warren 5'10" 170 (DB), another upcoming Junior went back to Pahokee where he most certainly will start and that wasn't as guaranteed on our roster; his Dad is a faculty member at OHS so he returned to live with his Mom.  Javonte Simpson Lee, another Junior 6'5" 190 (WR) to Poinciana who we spent a ton of time working with last year to hopefully get some production out of this year.  Again, we are a run first team so likely thought he may play a bigger role there.  I probably have missed another couple players but as you can see several left for other high profile programs in the area.  

The players we have gotten that will have an impact are obviously Connor Howes 6'6" 280 senior (OL) out of St. Cloud.  He will bookend with our other offensive tackle Marcus Ferrer 6'6" 300 (Jr.) who both have multiple D1 offers.  Connor's Dad has been talking about transferring him to OHS for the past couple of years and finally pulled the trigger.  Senior QB Izaiah Prime out of Oak Ridge will compete for the starting job with Cam West (another Junior) who started most of last year.  Junior LB Louis Figueroa 5'11" 190 out of Toho HS will challenge another couple of Juniors that have been with our program for that 3rd starting job.  Lastly, Adrian Gonzalez a kicker out of St. Cloud HS.  Rumor mill always has other prospects that talk, but as they say talk is cheap.   As you can see we are talking about a handful that go either way in our program (TFA has gotten about 20 from surrounding schools and word is they aren't done, simply took their foot off the gas during the FHSAA investigation until summer arrived). They as well as others have made advances to our 2 stud senior LB's and please don't ask me for proof as the Dad's word are good enough for me.  

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21 hours ago, Ray Icaza said:

Two upcoming Juniors to TFA (likely starters) were Blaze Jones 6'2" 225(DE/OLB) and Gerard Gearity 6'5" 280 (OL).  Neither makes any sense to me, but I think Blaze wanted more opportunities at LB where we are pretty stacked and it appears they are providing that.  Another upcoming Junior starter, Alijah "Flash" Jenkins 5'8" 160 slot receiver and kick returner to Jones where they have a top rated QB hence maybe more receiving opportunities although competing for that spot vs Vernell "Trey" Brown III; quite a task so wonder how that shakes out over the summer.  Another upcoming Junior Zion Matthews 5'11" 190 (RB) to Dr. Phillips where he does have a good shot at starting, whereas it was impossible with Taevion on our roster.  Tre Warren 5'10" 170 (DB), another upcoming Junior went back to Pahokee where he most certainly will start and that wasn't as guaranteed on our roster; his Dad is a faculty member at OHS so he returned to live with his Mom.  Javonte Simpson Lee, another Junior 6'5" 190 (WR) to Poinciana who we spent a ton of time working with last year to hopefully get some production out of this year.  Again, we are a run first team so likely thought he may play a bigger role there.  I probably have missed another couple players but as you can see several left for other high profile programs in the area.  

The players we have gotten that will have an impact are obviously Connor Howes 6'6" 280 senior (OL) out of St. Cloud.  He will bookend with our other offensive tackle Marcus Ferrer 6'6" 300 (Jr.) who both have multiple D1 offers.  Connor's Dad has been talking about transferring him to OHS for the past couple of years and finally pulled the trigger.  Senior QB Izaiah Prime out of Oak Ridge will compete for the starting job with Cam West (another Junior) who started most of last year.  Junior LB Louis Figueroa 5'11" 190 out of Toho HS will challenge another couple of Juniors that have been with our program for that 3rd starting job.  Lastly, Adrian Gonzalez a kicker out of St. Cloud HS.  Rumor mill always has other prospects that talk, but as they say talk is cheap.   As you can see we are talking about a handful that go either way in our program (TFA has gotten about 20 from surrounding schools and word is they aren't done, simply took their foot off the gas during the FHSAA investigation until summer arrived). They as well as others have made advances to our 2 stud senior LB's and please don't ask me for proof as the Dad's word are good enough for me.  

not 1 bit of any of that makes much sense to me.  but im an old head, play where you live.  from the sounds of kids going out and coming in, they all have colleges looking at them, why jeopordize that.  

chance to start, maybe I get that, coming from a losing program, makes sense you want to win, a kicker?  lol.

st cloud is a rival, took their best kids?  I dont follow them to know, why would a kid leave osceola to poinciana?  lol, thats silly to me.  

tfa stuff is pretty deep from what I read about, major benefactor gave them 6 million dollars for athletics(football) and some intersting things going on with "school" for those kids.  fhsaa wont do anything about it, im sure.

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2 hours ago, h8r said:

not 1 bit of any of that makes much sense to me.  but im an old head, play where you live.  from the sounds of kids going out and coming in, they all have colleges looking at them, why jeopordize that.  

chance to start, maybe I get that, coming from a losing program, makes sense you want to win, a kicker?  lol.

st cloud is a rival, took their best kids?  I dont follow them to know, why would a kid leave osceola to poinciana?  lol, thats silly to me.  

tfa stuff is pretty deep from what I read about, major benefactor gave them 6 million dollars for athletics(football) and some intersting things going on with "school" for those kids.  fhsaa wont do anything about it, im sure.

We usually don't get a lot out of St. Cloud or Harmony who usually have well run/good programs with the primary factor of stability with their coaches.  More so out of Poinciana, Liberty and Gateway.  Most kids are deciding to move if they think it will benefit them but regardless it is always a crapshoot.  Last year one of our top basketball duos (cousins) transferred to St. Cloud after playing at OHS their freshmen and sophomore years.  One of them, Alex Springs who is one of the most explosive athletes in our area who also plays football as a WR led them in catches, yardage and had almost twice the number of TD's as any other member of that squad so they got great benefit in getting him.  Apparently, there was friction between the HC on the basketball team and the father/uncle of these players thus he transferred them.  Those two players led St. Cloud to the best basketball record they have had in decades as well.   From what I read Alex had a terrific 7x7 at the UCF camp which surprised alot of people as he was a bit of an unknown at receiver.  He did perform well for us as a sophomore in the spring game against Edgewater May of '23 prior to the transfer, so he could have definitely helped us last year.  The Jenkins kid moving to Jones as a WR looks like he has alot to think about not only competing against Vernell "Trey" Brown and others, but now the top WR from West Orange Larry Miles has just transferred to Jones thus I see all this as a crapshoot for many players.   Another player we just lost is Isaiah Brutus who we got from Dr. Phillips a couple of years ago as a WR.  He is a very good athlete, so we felt he could get on the field more as a DB which benefitted him tons as that produced multiple offers from even D1 schools for him.  However, Toho throws the ball much more and he went there to be a 2 way player as it seems to an outsider he prefers offense.  Shall be an interesting summer.

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21 hours ago, Ray Icaza said:

We usually don't get a lot out of St. Cloud or Harmony who usually have well run/good programs with the primary factor of stability with their coaches.  More so out of Poinciana, Liberty and Gateway.  Most kids are deciding to move if they think it will benefit them but regardless it is always a crapshoot.  Last year one of our top basketball duos (cousins) transferred to St. Cloud after playing at OHS their freshmen and sophomore years.  One of them, Alex Springs who is one of the most explosive athletes in our area who also plays football as a WR led them in catches, yardage and had almost twice the number of TD's as any other member of that squad so they got great benefit in getting him.  Apparently, there was friction between the HC on the basketball team and the father/uncle of these players thus he transferred them.  Those two players led St. Cloud to the best basketball record they have had in decades as well.   From what I read Alex had a terrific 7x7 at the UCF camp which surprised alot of people as he was a bit of an unknown at receiver.  He did perform well for us as a sophomore in the spring game against Edgewater May of '23 prior to the transfer, so he could have definitely helped us last year.  The Jenkins kid moving to Jones as a WR looks like he has alot to think about not only competing against Vernell "Trey" Brown and others, but now the top WR from West Orange Larry Miles has just transferred to Jones thus I see all this as a crapshoot for many players.   Another player we just lost is Isaiah Brutus who we got from Dr. Phillips a couple of years ago as a WR.  He is a very good athlete, so we felt he could get on the field more as a DB which benefitted him tons as that produced multiple offers from even D1 schools for him.  However, Toho throws the ball much more and he went there to be a 2 way player as it seems to an outsider he prefers offense.  Shall be an interesting summer.

wonderful info on the other, lesser known schools and their players.  

saying toho throws the ball much more is pretty funny, that guy throws it every play, speed sweep is a pass, lol, the 10td guy vs celebration years and years ago, 

 

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1 hour ago, h8r said:

wonderful info on the other, lesser known schools and their players.  

saying toho throws the ball much more is pretty funny, that guy throws it every play, speed sweep is a pass, lol, the 10td guy vs celebration years and years ago, 

 

They don't call their HC "AirDiso" for nothing. :lol:

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10 hours ago, h8r said:

wonderful info on the other, lesser known schools and their players.  

saying toho throws the ball much more is pretty funny, that guy throws it every play, speed sweep is a pass, lol, the 10td guy vs celebration years and years ago, 

 

Yeah it was the Tucker Isreal kid who made ESPN for the TD throws against celebration. I seen 3 that were a jet sweep. Game was way out of hand in the 4th quarter and Paradiso still had Isreal in their throwing it. 

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5 hours ago, Jullian said:

I’m up in Lake City(getting da hell outta So Flo) for a week. Stopped by Columbia to see the school & stadium. Luckily the players were there doing conditioning. As usual they have some big boys, tall boys, fast boys, & many boys. Would like to see them do well. 

They have a nice football stadium and generally good fan support. I watched a game up there with @Columbiafan several years ago. 

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Two complete weeks in the book and today's workout showed great consistency in the effort and participation level both by the players as well as the coaching staff.  Going to be a fun bunch to follow in the fall given the work they are putting in and the middle of August is right around the corner.  Many are also attending camps and have been top performers.  Expectations are high as always. 

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3 hours ago, Ray Icaza said:

Two complete weeks in the book and today's workout showed great consistency in the effort and participation level both by the players as well as the coaching staff.  Going to be a fun bunch to follow in the fall given the work they are putting in and the middle of August is right around the corner.  Many are also attending camps and have been top performers.  Expectations are high as always. 

did yall not start at the beginning of june?  many of the locals here started on 6-3, and are on week 4 of summer, to each there own, but there are only so many days in the summer for workouts.  

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4 hours ago, h8r said:

did yall not start at the beginning of june?  many of the locals here started on 6-3, and are on week 4 of summer, to each there own, but there are only so many days in the summer for workouts.  

Ours started on June 11 and they do three days a week with the week of July 4th completely off.  I think giving them a couple of weeks off after completion of our Spring Jamboree vs Edgewater/Deland (05/23) is much appreciated by the players.

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9 hours ago, nolebull813 said:

@Ray Icaza I’m at Osceola High Stadium right this second. Track event hosted by a local track club called Charger Elite. My son runs track and I like to sign him up out side of school to keep him conditioned 

Currently driving to Jensen Beach, FL to meet some friends for lunch otherwise I could have stopped over there to meet.  Our HC for football and track has a young daughter (Zyon Pinellas) that appears to have a bright future in track; she competes for that local team.  

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7 hours ago, Ray Icaza said:

Currently driving to Jensen Beach, FL to meet some friends for lunch otherwise I could have stopped over there to meet.  Our HC for football and track has a young daughter (Zyon Pinellas) that appears to have a bright future in track; she competes for the local team.  

She was there. She did good. Won all her events. Charger Elite is the team she runs for. It’s the local one. They hosted the event. 

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1 hour ago, nolebull813 said:

She was there. She did good. Won all her events. Charger Elite is the team she runs for. It’s the local one. They hosted the event. 

That is correct and she has actually qualified to compete in the AAU Club National Championship Meet in Jacksonville July 8th-13th where obviously the competition will be stiff.  

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