Day 72 of our countdown to kickoff brings us to offensive lineman Jason King.
Jason King - Fr. (RS)
Hometown: Little Rock, AR (Pulaski Academy)
6'4", 305 pounds
2013 Projection: Reserve at OL
King came to West Lafayette as part of the 2012 recruiting class that brought four other offensive linemen to Purdue, including yesterday's featured player, J.J. Prince. After redshirting last year, King projects to enter 2013 competing for time as a reserve.
King comes from Arkansas high school football powerhouse Pulaski Academey, where in King's senior year they went 14-0, averaged 51.5 points per game and 538 yards per game, en route to a state championship. Perhaps the most well-known figure out of Pulaski Academy is head coach Kevin Kelley, the cult-like figure who's been featured in Sports Illustrated for his "no punting" gameplan and the team's constant onside kicks. King played at the right tackle spot in Kelley's high powered offense earning a 2-star ranking, but was recruited by the likes of Colorado, Kansas, and Louisiana Tech as a guard.
What led many to project King as a guard is his superb athleticism. Tipping the scales at 305 pounds, this man can dunk a basketball with little to no effort. While not quite on Vince Wilfork's level, any time a guy over 3 bills can dunk a basketball, I'm impressed.
Jason King 6'4" 300 lbs - Dunking (via dep33460)
Transitioning that athleticism to the football field, King saw himself running as the lead blocker on bubble screens, pancaking, then pancaking again.
"He had multiple plays where he had pancake blocks of more than one player," Kelley said. "That's what stood out on the film and that's why schools really liked him. He wouldn't just take care of his guy - he goes to the next guy."
Taking a look at his recruiting video, it doesn't take much time to see King's pancake to non-pancake ratio (I just made this up) is pretty good. Give it a try. Click on a random point in that clip, and chances are the play you're watching ends in a pancake.
Pulaski Academy RT Jason King Highlights (via pulaskiacademy)
The biggest question mark when it comes to King is his pass blocking. Coming from an offense in high school filled with runs and screen plays, King needs to prove himself capable of handling interior defensive lineman just as big as him, hell-bent on reaching the quarterback. King still figures to be a year or two off from contributing regularly and it never hurts to have offensive line depth, especially with the graduation of some members of the offensive line, but look for King to try to continue his pancaking ways in the next couple years.
You can also follow King on Twitter @Jason72King.