COLUMBIANA, OH (WKBN)-Both Columbiana’s Mitch Davidson and Crestview’s Jordan Murphy have been a couple of the best players not only at their respective schools, but also in Columbiana County. However, recently these two outstanding players had the opportunity to participate in a football camp with players from around the country.
On May 7th they participated in Nike’s “Elite 11” football camp at Westerville North High School in Columbus. The competition is by invite only with the finals being broadcasted on ESPN from the Nike complex in Oregon.
“It was pretty neat,” Columbiana Clippers head coach Bob Spaite remarked. “There was something that came over “The Huddle” that we (coaches) all use now to exchange film and stuff. So I sent Mitch’s name in and they sent back an application form that he had to fill out and an application that I had to fill out along with film from his freshman year, sophomore year and junior year. It was a long application.”
Davidson was one of 54 quarterbacks to be invited while Murphy was one of approximately 50 defensive linemen to compete in the camp. Other competitors came from Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York and Kentucky. In total there were approximately 300 to 400 players.
“You didn’t see anybody that didn’t belong,” Spaite remarked about the talent. “There were a lot of ‘oh wow’ guys down there.”
“I think it was a tremendous honor and opportunity for Jordan to showcase his talents. Jordan has worked very hard to get to this point and has continued to put in the time necessary. He and his family have done a great job of getting his name out there and visiting colleges to see what will be best for Jordan,” Rebels coach Paul Cusick said.
Jordan has been offered scholarships to continue his football career in college from Eastern Michigan, Iowa State and Toledo. Cincinnati, Kent State, Syracuse and Northwestern have also scouted the 6’3, 250 pound Rebel defensive end.
While neither Davidson nor Murphy was invited to the finals in Oregon, coach Spaite reported that both accounted well for themselves in both individual and group, competitions. Many of the competitors in the camp included Division 1 college recruits in the northeast area of the country.
“I didn’t get to see Jordan as much as I would have liked. We were focused on Mitch obviously most of the time. You’re splitting hairs; Mitch’s forty time was right in the middle. Physically, the thing that’s going to kill him is that he is 5’9 1/2, 5’10; he was easily the shortest guy down there, easily. Jordan on the other hand fit right in. There were quite a few bigger guys, but most of the really big guys were offensive linemen. Defensive wise he fit right in, he really did.”
“Jordan and Mitch should be proud of themselves and they represent what is good about high school student-athletes. Both of them are what you want in a player and a teammate,” Cusick concluded.
“I think it speaks pretty highly of this area if you get two kids invited to that. I’m sure there are other kids that would have qualified if they would go through the application process. I don’t know that for a fact, but certainly in the Quad County Coaches Association we certainly have guys that fit that mold. We have a lot of really good players that come out of this area,” Spaite added.