Wednesday, September 09, 2009

GBMW: Friday Night Lights -- Courtney Avery 2010 Michigan Commit

Courtney Avery: Friday Night Lights -- 2010 Michigan Commit

GBMW went to see 2010 Michigan commit Courtney Avery, and his team, take on the Shelby Whippets. Lexington has a Division 2 designation and Shelby a Division 3 (Division 1 being the highest in Ohio of the six divisions).

First off, when arriving, many people noticed the Michigan gear, had the usual stares, comments, and yes asked the all too familiar what are you doing here type of questions.

I was able to meet and talk to several people who know Courtney quite well and deal with him on a day-to-day basis. All discussants stated how great of a kid Courtney is and how he is very humble. He is a kid that has his head on straight and one that should not be affected by being away from home. Courtney has a 3.9 GPA, which enabled him to land offers from places like Stanford and Michigan.

In regards to Stanford, GBMW was informed that notifying Stanford of his decision to commit to Michigan was one of the most difficult tasks Courtney ever had to undertake, because he loved Stanford’s academics and also the coaching staff. We believe, after talking with various sources, that Courtney choosing Stanford so early in the process centered around him not being aware of other big-time programs that have the academic standards and football excellence he was looking for in a university program.

Courtney attended the Michigan summer camp and discovered he could compete with the best at camp. As a result of his success, a Michigan scholarship offer materialized, placing Courtney in a quandary. On the one hand, he was extremely excited that he received an offer from a school like Michigan, with its academics and prestigious football program. But on the other hand, he now faced a tough decision concerning Stanford.

Courtney based his decision to go to Michigan on being closer to home, so family, friends, and coaches could all come see him play, along with being a part of Michigan football. He had a great time at camp and fully took in the campus, the football practice fields, the stadium, and got a future glimpse of being able to see where he would be in his day-to-day life as a student-athlete.

Now let us go on to the game description. I knew beforehand that Lexington would probably handle Shelby (they did 42-6). But the purpose of the venture was to take notice of Courtney's athletic ability. Right off the bat, on the very first play, Courtney threw a perfect ball to his tight end for a 65 yard pass play in which the ball traveled 35 yards and hit the receiver in stride.

Later in the game, Courtney ran an offense similar to that of Michigan. In the shotgun formation, Courtney faked the handoff to the running back and then quarterback-sneaked the ball directly behind the left guard. He made several quick moves, a spin and then he busted through the line and scored on a 54 yard run play.

On offense, Courtney had a lot of dropped balls that were mostly on target. But the receivers simply dropped the ball. There was not a lengthy attempt to watch his overall mechanics as a quarterback, since he is not going to be a quarterback at Michigan. But Courtney does throw a nice ball and seemed to make the right reads, along with looking for the secondary targets, if the main receiver or first option was not open.

He completed throws to eight different receivers throughout the night and really did a great job of managing the game as the quarterback. While running the ball, Courtney was a guy with good moves and quick reactions: he found the hole and hit it. His athletic ability is up there and he has talent that will only make him better and better at the next level.

On defense he was always following the wide receiver to the wide side, or the best receiver on the field. Shelby did not even really go after Courtney at all, but as an observer it was clear he has been working on his backpedal techniques and also his reads.

So from this sample of one game it is somewhat hard to judge Courtney’s defensive skill set without watching him play against a team that actually goes after him, or at least somebody that will throw the ball his way. You can only judge a player when action comes his way and how he reacts to it. Shelby knew he was Lexington’s best player. So, like many high school teams do, the strategy was adopted to circumvent a talented defensive player. In addition, Shelby was more of a running team anyway.

Hopefully we will be able to see another game of Courtney's this year and get a better feel for his defensive skills.

He is a great athlete, great kid and an all-around great student who will represent Michigan very well.

Thanks for stopping by Go Blue Michigan Wolverine
If you have any questions please E-Mail

Written by ErocWolverine

Courtney Avery Junior Highlight Film

Courtney Avery Sophomore Highlight Film

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