2014 Receiver Impresses Coaches

Throughout the day at Will Muschamp’s football camp one receiver stood out above the rest. That receiver was 2014 prospect Ryan Sousa out of Lake Nona high school in Orlando, Florida.

Gator Country’s very own Dan Thompson saw Sousa in Orlando at a NFTC event and came away impressed with the receiver. Here’s Dan’s take on Sousa.

“Ryan Sousa was, at worst, the 2nd best wide receiver at the NFTC, and at times and at best, the No. 1 overall wide receiver. He was quick, ran smooth routes, had an incredibly high vertical, caught the ball very well, including catching the ball at the highest point, and ultimately, showcased a skill set that every school is looking for in a wide receiver at the next level. He could stand to gain 10-15 pounds and improve his initial quickness but Sousa is a special player and would be an asset to any school that garners his commitment.”

A 6’, 170-pound receiver, Sousa has a sturdy frame and is very strong for his size although he would benefit from an additional 10-15 pounds as Dan mentioned. He showed smooth feet and great quickness in all of the receiver drills. Sousa drew a lot of attention from the coaching staff and spoke with Chris Leak, Joker Phillips and Will Muschamp throughout the day.

Sousa said that the coaching staff was very complimentary of him and even though they haven’t extended a scholarship offer yet, the coaches are still interested in him.

“They [Phillips and Muschamp] were talking about how they really like me, really enjoyed me, they really want me to come play for Florida.”

Sousa seemed humbled to receive the attention that he did today.

“It’s a blessing that two great coaches said that. [At Florida] I can play with one of the best receivers coaches. He [Phillips] just said he really likes me, my skill, my route running and my quickness and he said there’s a good chance they might offer.”

Coach Phillips has been Sousa’s main recruiter and he enjoyed the opportunity to be coached by Phillips who he called a “phenomenal coach.”

I asked Sousa if the recent struggles that the Gators have had passing the ball was a deterrent or something that could potentially turn him off to the school.

“No,” Sousa responded. “I believe Florida is in a rebuilding process. The receivers’ standpoint, they’re rebuilding and that’s why they’re looking for more receivers. I feel like I could make a difference. They still have some good receivers, I would have to work hard to be the best here.”

And that’s just what Sousa is doing with his high school team this summer. The team has been working out every morning, running, lifting weights and running routes with their quarterback.

This was Sousa’s first campus visit of the summer and he currently has 32 offers with some SEC schools like Missouri and Kentucky as well as UCF and USF among those. The trip to campus allowed him some time to see the university and Ben Hill Griffin Stadium for the first time.

“I took a tour of the campus, went to the stadium, they showed me around everywhere,” Sousa said. “I enjoyed it.”

Sousa was invited to come back to Friday Night Lights but he wasn’t sure today if he will be in town that weekend. If today is any indication of how he plays all the time, I would expect that an offer from Florida may come in the not too distant future.




Previous articleWill Muschamp Football Camp Notebook: Tuesday
Next articleBasketball adds UCONN to schedule
Nick de la Torre
A South Florida native, Nick developed a passion for all things sports at a very young age. His love for baseball was solidified when he saw Al Leiter’s no-hitter for the Marlins live in May of 1996. He was able to play baseball in college but quickly realized there isn’t much of a market for short, slow outfielders that hit around the Mendoza line. Wanting to continue with sports in some capacity he studied journalism at the University of Central Florida. Nick got his first start in the business as an intern for a website covering all things related to the NFL draft before spending two seasons covering the Florida football team at Bleacher Report. That job led him to GatorCountry. When he isn’t covering Gator sports, Nick enjoys hitting way too many shots on the golf course, attempting to keep up with his favorite t.v. shows and watching the Heat, Dolphins and Marlins. Follow him on twitter @NickdelatorreGC