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January 8, 2013

MVPs leave mark at Army Combine

MORE: U.S. Army All-American Bowl

Kentavious Street won every single rep during the one-on-one portion at the Army National Combine in San Antonio last week. But he stumbled once during the session, and that's what he focused on after the event.

Perfection is important for Street, a 6-foot-4, 255-pound defensive end from Greenville (N.C.) Rose who plays with the same ferocity as 2013 five-star Carl Lawson.

Rivals.com named Street the overall MVP of the Army Combine, and it was well-deserved because no offensive linemen could handle him off the edge.

Street, who favors Clemson, Virginia Tech and N.C. State but remains open to other opportunities, was unstoppable all day, never hesitated against any lineman but still cared about that one trip-up.

Even though Street won the rep, he stumbled before hitting the bag and the 2014 prospect was disappointed it happened.

"I thought I did OK," Street said after the combine. "That first time I went and I fell, I really don't want to ever have a mistake in my game so I'm going to work on perfecting my craft and really just honing my skills.

"I want to knock them off their feet and let my presence be known. That's how I was taught. My dad (Kendrick Street, who played at Florida State) has shown me everything I know. He showed me how to get in my stance when I was younger. From there on, I just developed it."

Street was arguably the top overall prospect at the event, but he wasn't the only major standout.

Rivals.com named Gallatin (Tenn.) Station Camp four-star wide receiver Josh Malone the offensive MVP and Ponte Vedra, Fla., four-star outside linebacker Dillon Bates the defensive MVP.

Bates, the son of three-time Super Bowl champion and former Cowboys safety Bill Bates, was especially dominant during one-on-one drills, a difficult task for any linebacker against speedy running backs running right at him.

The four-star prospect will have many options in recruiting. His father played at Tennessee, and Texas A&M, Notre Dame and Ohio State have been mentioned.

Surely, SEC and ACC schools closer to home will get involved, especially after hearing reports of Bates from the Army Combine.

"Bates had an amazing combine working out as a linebacker," Rivals.com national analyst Mike Farrell said.

"You can tell his coverage skills in space from playing safety translate closer to the line of scrimmage, but his instincts are what separate him. He has a feel for the game and for what his opponent is going to do, and he jumps routes and closes on the ball as well as anybody.

"He had a near interception on his first rep, a pick on the second I saw, and after that there were many pass breakups. He has the bloodlines, of course, and maybe that's where the instincts come from, but he also has a great frame, good speed, and a year from now he'll be a good-size linebacker who can cover wideouts."

Malone, a 6-foot-5, 187-pound prospect, used his size and pass-catching ability during one-on-one drills at the combine. It's not the first time he's ruled on the football field.

The four-star was a regular on the spring and summer camp circuit, where he was just as good, and that's why more than a dozen programs have offered.

"It's a good feeling," Malone said. "It feels like my hard work is starting to pay off."

Malone isn't greedy; he's just good. He's hoping for offers from USC, Oregon, Miami, Florida State, Florida and Alabama.

That's possible, especially after such an impressive performance in San Antonio.

It won't be his last, either. Malone, Street and Bates have been asked back for the Army game next year and will have another chance to stand out inside the Alamodome.



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