Editor's note: Hall of Fame high school sports writer and MaxPreps senior writer Dave Krider asked legendary and CBS/MaxPreps recruiting expert Tom Lemming who the best player he ever saw. Here is Krider's story.
CBS/MaxPreps recruiting analyst Tom Lemming, who has been ranking high school football players since 1978, calls Randy Moss the greatest player he ever has seen in person or on film.
"He was a man among boys," Lemming said of the wide receiver from now defunct DuPont High School in Belle, W.Va.. "I'd seen him on film hurdling defenders without losing a step. Still, to this day, I think he is the best high school weapon I've ever seen."
Lemming ranks Jeff George
, a quarterback from Warren Central (Indianapolis, Ind.)
, as the No. 2 player.
"He was an ideal quarterback with height, great release and as good as Dan Marino coming out of high school," Lemming said. "I thought he'd been a Hall of Famer, but he had a nomadic kind of career (after high school)."
Marcus Dupree from Philadelphia (Miss.)
is his No. 3 player.
He explained, "My first four years there was a great running back every year. He came in the fourth year and he had it all. If he would have dedicated himself, nothing could have kept him out of the Hall of Fame."
After Dupree, however, Lemming said he had to wait over 20 years before the next superstar running back emerged. That was Adrian Peterson
of Palestine (Texas)
"He ran a 10.4 in the 100 meters and there was no debate," Lemming said of Peterson's ability. "He was a good-character kid. Oklahoma taking him from Texas was a major coup."
Lemming's No. 5 player is John Elway
of Granada Hills (Calif.)
"It was my first year and he was the only one I didn't see in person," Lemming explained. "He was the first quarterback who combined great size, a cannon arm and could run. He brought a new element to football."MaxPreps
asked its most experienced writers and freelancers to name the best high
school football player they ever saw. Requirements were at least 20
years on the job and that they had to see the athlete play in person.