Football's a Snap for Lake Region Senior
Thu. July 05, 2012 at 3:11 a.m. | By Polk Preps Staff
Lake Region's Harrison Edgar is making a name for himself as an accomplished long snapper. (Photo by PAUL CRATE | LEDGER MEDIA GROUP )
By BILL KEMP | LEDGER MEDIA GROUP
WINTER HAVEN | At the end of the day it's about how fast does it take to get from point A to point B.
Lake Region senior center Harrison Edgar proved he can get both body and football from point to point so snappy that he was selected by Kohl's Professional Camps' coaches to attend their National Invitational Scholarship camp at the University of Wisconsin Whitewater on July 21-22.
"It's our most prestigious event," said Kevin Garviolle, Kohl's lead snapping coach. "We invite the top performers from each camp throughout the year to attend this and showcase their talents."
Kohl's, the top Google-searched kicking, punting and snapping camp, holds several clinics throughout the year, evaluates and ranks punters and snappers for ESPN.com and is involved in player selection for the Under Armour All-American Game held at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg each January.
"(This camp) is invitation only," said Garviolle. "It's for the kids we see at camp that pop open our eyes or the ball may just fly off of his fingertips. It's for somebody we feel has a legitimate shot at playing at the next level. They come to this camp and compete."
Following competition, players are rated from 5-star, which is a definite Division 1 prospect, to 4 ½-star, a potential D-1 or D-2 player, and then 4-star and lower.
"After the rating we rank them. Our best 5-star kid will be No. 1 and then down the line," Garviolle said.
The 6-foot, 245-pound Edgar, who is carving his niche as a long snapper, spent June traveling across the South attending college football camps at Florida State (June 9), Auburn (June 11-12), Duke (June 14-15) and Miami (June 20).
It was at Auburn that he received his formal invitation.
"It's an honor to get invited," Edgar said. "I want to be Division I. I want to do whatever I can, even if I have to play another position to be a long snapper."
Edgar has been the starting center for the Thunder since last season and the starting long snapper since his sophomore year. During that period he has yet to record an unsuccessful snap in game. Lake Region head coach Steve Reynolds said he expects "great things" from Edgar and he likes the exposure he's received at camps.
"We believe football is a tool to get to the next level," Reynolds said. "He saw that long snapping is a niche to get that college scholarship. He's utilized that and he's worked very hard at it."
Edgar's average snap traveling from his center position to the punter 15 yards away is .71 seconds. And he was once timed as fast as .62 seconds, which is considered NFL-caliber speed.
Edgar said his velocity increased dramatically after Duke special teams coach Ron Middleton made a slight adjustment in his grip.
Reynolds said colleges asses three key areas before recruiting centers and snapper candidates.
"They look at how fast can you get that ball back there, size and can you get downfield (after the punt) if you are a long snapper," Reynolds said. "He's gotten pretty much all three of those categories locked in."
Reynolds added Edgar's 40-yard dash time is 5 seconds flat.
"For a guy that is 265 pounds, he gets it down the field."
Garviolle said during the Auburn camp the coaching staff placed a return man downfield during a directional drill, and Edgar's speed caught their attention.
"To tell you the truth I was really impressed with his ability to get downfield and his footwork in tracking the ball carrier," Graviolle said. "For kids upwards of 240, 250 or (the) 260-pound range, if they're getting downfield in a 4.8, 4.9 or 5.0 seconds in the 40, I think that is really good.
"Edgar's got very good snap velocity and his overall accuracy is very good. He really has the total package as far as a snapper goes… and just interacting with the kid, he was polite and just a great kid to be around."