Many of the nation's top high school football players will take the field when the second annual ESPN RISE Gridiron Kings event kicks off this weekend at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Fla.
Of the 64 players taking part in the 7-on-7 event, 25 are members of the ESPNU 150 rankings. Like other 7-on-7 events, Gridiron Kings is just for skill position players -- quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers, tight ends, linebackers, cornerbacks and safety.
Among the ESPNU 150 players are James Wilder II, Tony Steward (St. Augustine, Fla.), Quandre Diggs (Angleton, Texas), Karlos Williams (Davenport, Fla.), No. 26 Hasean Clinton-Dix (Orlando, Fla.), Savon Huggins (Jersey City, N.J.) and Curtis Grant (Richmond, Va.), all of whom are ranked in the top 50.
"This is 64 of the best players in the country, all in one location," said Greg Biggins, ESPN RISE Director of Player Personnel. "This is huge. Typically, with the all-star games like Under Armour and the U.S. Army All-American Game, you have the top guys split up. All the talent is here this weekend. This is the best of best. There will be some amazing athletes out there."
Player were selected after participating and being evaluated in various Nike camps or combines throughout the spring and summer.
"We had to see the kids at one event," Biggins explained. "We picked guys who we felt were the best at their position in that region of the country."
On Saturday the players will be broken up by position and work on various drills and skills and be divided into teams based on region. On Sunday, the competition begins.
"This is something brand new and I am very excited about it," safety Karlos Williams said. "There are some top guys from all over the nation and some of these guys I am very familiar with. I am anxious to represent the south with my teammates and hopefully we can take home the trophy."
The players will be coached by former NFL and CFL players Jeff Blake (QB), Stacie Bailey (WR), Terrence Mathis (WR), Lamar Thomas (WR), Natrone Means (RB), Adrian Murrell (RB), Chris Gizzi (LB), Lonnie Marts (LB), Hardy Nickerson (LB), Louis Oliver (DB), and Michael Fletcher (DB).
ESPNU 150 members
James Wilder, LB Plant -- Tampa, Fla. No. 8 Southeast
Tony Steward, LB Pedro Menendez -- St. Augustine, Fla. No. 10 Southeast
Quandre Diggs, S Angleton -- Angleton, Texas No. 17 Southwest
Karlos Williams, DB Ridge Community -- Davenport, Fla. No. 21 Southeast
Nick O'Leary, TE William T. Dwyer -- Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. No. 22 Southeast
Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix, ATH Dr. Phillips -- Orlando, Fla. No. 26 Southeast
Savon Huggins, RB St. Peter's Prep -- Jersey City, N.J. No. 31 Midwest
Devon Blackmon, WR Summit -- Fontana, Calif. No. 38 West
Curtis Grant, LB Hermitage -- Richmond, Va. No. 44 Midwest
Tacoi Sumler, WR Columbus -- Miami, Fla. No. 47 Southeast
DeAnthony Arnett, WR Saginaw -- Saginaw, Mich. No. 53 Midwest
Victor Blackwell, WR Marter Dei -- Santa Ana, Calif. No. 56 West
Nick Waisome, DB South Lake -- Groveland, Fla. No. 64 Southeast
Doran Grant, DB St.Vincents-St. Mary's -- Akron, Ohio No. 67 Midwest
Jarvis Landry, WR Lutcher -- Lutcher. La. No. 68 Southwest
Kasen Williams, WR Skyline -- Sammamish, Wash. No. 62 West
Josh Turner, CB Millwood -- Oklahoma City, Okla. No. 87 Southwest
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE Gig Harbor -- Gig Harbor, Wash. No. 88 West
Demetrious Nicholson, DB Bayside -- Virginia Beach, Va. No. 91 Midwest
Herschel Sims, RB Abilene – Abilene, Texas No. 100 Southwest
Clifton Richardson, RB Menchville -- Newport News, Va. No. 105 Midwest
Sheroid Evans, S Dulles -- Sugarland, Texas No. 120 Southwest
Rashad Greene, WR St. Thomas Aquinas -- Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. No. 123 Southeast
Christian Conley, WR North Paulding -- Dallas, Ga. No. 134 Southeast
Anthony Wallace, LB Dallas, Texas 141 Southwest
Jamie Newberg has been covering recruiting in the Southeast and nationally for 19 years. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.