Recruiting: West corners led by Crenshaw's De'Anthony Thomas

Editor's note: In his ongoing series on West Coast prep football prospects, recruiting expert Greg Biggins takes a look at cornerbacks:

It’s an overall solid group of corners out West led by arguably the top player in the region, regardless of position. As with so many other positions, a handful of players on this list could end up at another position but were put at corner to reflect where they have the most upside.

De’Anthony Thomas is an incredible talent and easily among the top players to come out of the L.A city section in the last decade. While most people view Thomas as a running back down the road, he clearly has a higher ceiling at the corner position.

Thomas has always struggled staying healthy at running back and his frame and running style will make it even tougher in college. At 160 pounds, Thomas runs as if he’s 230 and although you have to admire his toughness, it has affected his play in multiple games.

As a corner however, Thomas looks like a natural and was the DB MVP at the SoCal NIKE Camp. He has great feet and hips and the speed to turn and run with anyone. He has already shown what kind of hitter he is while playing safety and when you combine his physical tools with his toughness and work ethic, it’s easy to see Thomas having a major impact at the college level early in his college career.

Like Thomas, Stefan McClure has the talent to play early in college as well. He’s a good sized corner with long arms and great leaping ability. He plays with a high football IQ and is always around the ball. He plays a lot of safety in high school to keep him involved and prevent teams from just throwing away from him, but he’s definitely a corner and should be a very good one.

Marcus Peters was one of the big success stories of the spring. He was an under-the-radar recruit until earning DB MVP honors at the NorCal NIKE Camp and his stock shot through the roof. He has great size for the corner position but runs extremely well. He’s a physical player at the line and knows how to use his size to his advantage. It wouldn’t be a shock if Peters is moved to safety but in a day and age where receivers seem to get bigger every year, Peters can match up very well.

Ifo Ekpre-Olomu is just a very good football player. He may not have the great measurables in terms of size and speed but has great football instincts and a knack for making the big play. He has been one of the state’s top cover corners since his sophomore year and few players compete any harder than he does.

Jordan Richards could end up at several different positions in college. He’s a very talented receiver and great with the ball in his hands but it sounds like the Cardinal like him at corner. He has very good speed and a nice frame. He’s a physical player who loves to hit so safety is another spot he could wind up but he has all the tools to be a lock down corner in the Pac 10 and those are hard to find.

The Top 10:

1. De’Anthony Thomas, 5-9, 160, Los Angeles (Calif.) Crenshaw -- USC

The top overall player in the West and a dynamic athlete.

2. Stefan McClure, 5-11, 180, Vista (Calif.)

Pure cover corner with size, speed and playmaking ability.

3. Marcus Peters, 6-1, 175, Oakland (Calif.) McClymonds

Could grow in to a safety but has excellent cover skills for a tall DB.

4. Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, 5-9, 185, Chino Hills (Calif.)

Tough, physical player with a nose for the football.

5. Jordan Richards, 5-11, 185, Folsom (Calif.) -- Stanford

Great all-around athlete and one of the elite WRs in the region as well.

6. Kameron Jackson, 5-10, 160, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly -- Washington

Three-year starter with strong cover skills and toughness.

7. Joel Willis, 5-9, 175, Garden Grove (Calif.) Pacifica -- Washington

Explosive speed and one of the elite track guys in the area.

8. Ryan Henderson, 5-10, 170, Moreno Valley (Calif.) Rancho Verde -- Utah

Won the SPARQ Rating National Championship over the summer; incredible athlete.

9. Rashad Wadood, 5-10, 175, Lakewood (Calif.) -- Arizona State

Also a standout running back who plays with a lot of swagger.

10. Josh Atkinson, 6-1, 175, Livermore (Calif.) Granada -- Notre Dame

Good sized corner with excellent speed.

The Next 10:

11. Ellis Henderson, 6-0, 175, Vancouver (Wash.) Skyview

12. Ladale Jackson, 5-11, 160, Las Vegas (Nev.) Silverado

13. Demetrius Jackson, 5-8, 165, Baldwin Park (Calif.)

14. *Myan Tave, 6-0, 170, Carson (Calif.)

15. Tyler Ervin, 5-10, 165, Colton (Calif.)

16. Thierry Nguema, 5-11, 165, Corona (Calif.) Santiago

17. Mike Sparling, 6-1, 160, La Habra (Calif.) -- Southern Methodist

18. Ade Jackson, 5-9, 165, Sacramento (Calif.) Christian Brothers

19. Brian Clay, 5-11, 160, Vacaville (Calif.) Wood

20. Diondre Toms, 5-10, 155, Renton (Wash.) Lindbergh

*Tave is academically ineligible and has to sit out his senior season.

Previous posts:


Defensive ends

Defensive tackles

Tight ends

Wide receivers

Running backs


Offensive linemen

Greg Biggins is an occasional contributor to the ESPNLosAngeles.com Preps Blog. For more recruiting news, check out his Insider blog on West Coast recruiting.