With only two days left until the Purdue football team kicks off another season at home against Eastern Kentucky, this is effectively my last Kickoff Countdown post for the football team until the next offseason.
So, as most fans gear up for some football and put on their game faces, today I will examine the two featured players. They are both young, future talent for the team. And they are both very athletic multi-purpose athletes that could figure into several areas of our gameplans within the next few years. Please welcome Frankie Williams, redshirt freshman Cornerback, and Jonathan Curry, true freshman Running Back.
Frankie Williams - Fr. (RS)
Hometown: Tampa, FL (Coral Glades HS)
5'9", 186 pounds
2012 Projection: Contributor at Cornerback
Frankie Williams may not see the field a whole lot this fall--he is our fourth or fifth Cornerback this season, at best--but he is a very special, talented guy who will surely make a difference for out football team throughout the next few seasons.
Coming off a redshirt freshman season last year, Williams is skilled as a Defensive Back, Return Specialist, Running Back and Wide Receiver--all positions he frequently played and excelled at in high school. One area that he really dominated was kickoff and punt returns. In high school, he broke the record for most career kickoff or punt return TDs with nine! But, he is arguably at his best when he is playing DB. As a senior in 2010, Williams recorded 67 tackles, including 53 solos, one sack, two picks, eight pass deflections and a fumble recovery. He also caught 28 passes for for 483 yards and 7 TDs while playing WR his senior season and he also rushed for 10 carries, 46 yards and 3 TDs while at RB in 2010.
After such a successful career as a multi-purpose athlete at Coral Glades High in Tampa, FL, Frankie was listed as a three star recruit and was considered one of the nation's top athlete prospects. Before choosing Purdue, Williams also had offers from Cincinnati, Ole Miss, Nebraska, N.C. State, Texas Tech and Vanderbilt, among others.
I am really interested in seeing what the Purdue coaching staff chooses to do with Williams. He can clearly be a dominant football player in as many as four areas of the game, which is downright nuts! After guys like Josh Johnson, Ricardo Allen and Normondo Harris depart within the next season or two, I am sure Frankie will be a starter and a major force at Cornerback. But, he certainly could also see reps as a return specialist, a receiver or even a Running Back.
Only time will tell where and how much Williams gets utilized in his Purdue football career. But, I have a feeling this guy is going to a stud.
Jonathan Curry - Fr.
Hometown: Phenix City, AL (Central HS)
6'2", 245 pounds
2012 Projection: Likely redshirt
Jonathan Curry could be a huge part of the Boilermaker offense in the future one way or another. Although he is playing Running Back in college, and he will likely get a redshirt in his first year on campus, Curry was a Tight End is high school--which explains his size. At 6'2" and 245 pounds, the guy is almost a full back!
As a three star recruit and a nationally ranked Tight End product, Jonathan caught 23 passes for 249 yards and one touchdown as a senior last year. He was an all-state selection and also a members of National Honor Society, National Beta Club, National Society of High School Scholars, Who's Who Among, All-American Scholars, National Youth Leadership Council, National Junior Beta Club, Alabama-Mississippi All-State, Special Olympics Volunteer and Top 16 ESPN Tight End--all while maintaining a 3.96 GPA in high school.
Needless to say the guy is a hard-worker! He is motivated, involved, intelligent and athletic. Whether he plays TE, RB, FB or even another position, he should be very successful in his role. I am confident that a guy like this will excel wherever he is placed. Hopefully Curry will be able to use a combination of his football and book smarts to help bring huge amounts of success to the Boilermaker football team over the next few years.
Before he accepted his scholarship offer from Purdue, Curry was highly recruited by many big time programs. Stanford, Arkansas, Nebraska and Mississippi State are just a few on that list. So, without a doubt, we should feel very lucky that we snagged this guy. Scouts have also raved about his hands and overall catching abilities as well as his strength and blocking abilities and techniques. He looks like he could spend a lot of time playing both Running Back and tight End at Purdue, and I think it would be very interesting to use Curry heavily at multiple positions on a consistent basis. It certainly never hurts to have a guy with Jonathan's size, skill and versatility. Other schools will probably be kicking themselves about not locking this guy up after they see what he can do once we unleash him.