One of the great things about attending a big showcase event for both players and analysts is that we never know who will show up big. For some athletes these events are old hat and for others a new experience. But one thing holds true for rookies and veterans alike. You never know when your day will come. Well come it did for Federal Way High School’s DJ May.
May showed up with almost 600 other hopefuls at the Nike SPARQ Combine at Tigard High School last Saturday. The atmosphere was awesome and highly charged as the massive stereo system blew out AC/DC’s “Thunderstruck” right at the moment the 40 yard dash testing started.
Out there in that sea of athletes were some very special kids. Amongst them was DJ May who was making a planned appearance for the day. The first year player made some noise last year putting up about 1,200 yards on the season.
It was at the scoring area where our staff had decided to camp out after an hour of trying to keep up with the testing Stations. As the scores in each event started to role in we watched the SPARQ Leader Boards with anticipation.
Leaning over Mays shoulder we asked how he did.
“Good I think. I guess so anyway,” he said very nonchalantly.
He held up his score card that the SPARQ Computer spit out and flashed us his 105.75 score. We have been to many of these events and we knew that meant there was something special in the numbers.
His was one of the top scores of the day. May had recorded high scores in all of the events but most importantly was the number on his laser timed 40 yard dash.
We looked once and then again. The numbers were clear.
Now that may not be the fastest time we have ever seen but the SPARQ Event is known for turning out notoriously slow 40 times. You pretty much know as an athlete that these laser timers will usually add .20 to .25 of a second to your time.
“Is that good? It felt good I guess,” he said smiling.
So we went to work and got to know the youngster better. As we talked we understood that he had grown into his role as Running Back late in the season last year. DJ has always been fast but fancied himself as more of a jumper in Track and Field.
|Dirk Knudsen; WashingtonPreps.com|
|Nike NFTC MVP DJ May of Federal Way proved he has what it takes to be the best|
We asked if he was signed up for the Nike NFTC Camp the next day at Oregon. When he said “No” we made sure he was routed to the appropriate Nike Staff who were able to get him and some other hard working kids a last minute but much deserved invite.
So just 15 hours later when we saw DJ May at the indoor Moshofsky Center at the U of O we had to smile.
As we shook hands he thanked us. He was nervous and we told him to just work hard and be fast.
As we watched the drills and the crowded pods of talented players go through their paces it became clear. DJ is comfortable with the ball in his hands, makes great reads, and great decisions. He is more then a 4.47 40 yard dash athlete.
We called Uso Olive (6’1″, 285 lb. Top DT recruit for 2012) who we have covered and asked him about his Federal Way Team mate. He had this to say.