Events such as The Opening – where some of the nation’s best players gather to compete in front of recruiting analysts and NFL representatives – serve as excellent opportunities for athletes to show their worth. They also give athletes a chance to show they’re better than originally advertised.
ESPN 150 wide receiver Torii Hunter Jr. (Prosper, Texas/Prosper) took advantage of what The Opening could offer. After an excellent four-day stretch in Beaverton, Ore. – which concluded with an outstanding performance in the 7-on-7 championship – Hunter saw his ranking improve from 137 to 51.
“The reason I went to The Opening was to show people that I was better than 137,” Hunter said, as he finished playing a summer baseball game. “Now finding out that I moved up 86 spots to 51, I feel like I’ve succeeded.
Considered a pro baseball prospect as well, Hunter ran a 4.57-second 40-yard dash and recorded a vertical leap of 33 inches during The Opening’s SPARQ competition the first day. He looked faster and more athletic during 7-on-7 competition, making play after play and dazzling scouts in the championship game for his team, Super Bad.
“It showed that I could go up and get it and make tough catches in traffic,” Hunter said. “I don’t think people really got to see that in my film.”
Hunter is now ranked No. 8 among receivers nationally and No. 7 among players in Texas in the 2013 recruiting class. He has offers from Notre Dame, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Nebraska, TCU and a host of other programs.