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December 27, 2011
The first five-stars: Thomas Tyner
They are the best of the best. The players that are wanted by every program and destined to make a big impact at the college level and beyond.
Rivals.com has identified the first five-star prospects for the 2013 class and is unveiling them this week. Ten prospects have been awarded five-stars but are not ranked at this time and we will profile two each day. The next player to receive the five-star spotlight is Beaverton (Ore.) Aloha running back Thomas Tyner
Thomas Tyner, RB, Beaverton (Ore.) Aloha
Attributes: 6-0, 200, 4.38 40
Top schools: Tyner committed to Oregon in late November.
Scouting report: Tyner missed six games in his junior season with various injuries but still rushed for 1,136 yards and 12 touchdowns averaging nearly nine yards per carry. He is considered the fastest athlete in Oregon's history after becoming the state record holder in the 100 meters last track season. The Oregon commit is impressively fast with the ball in his hands and he also has great cut-back ability to create even more space in the open field. Once Tyner finds an opening there aren't many players in the country who could track him down. What's also impressive about Tyner is that he's not just a speedster, he can find holes, make defenders miss and follow blockers to gain extra yards.
Analyst's take: "Tyner has exceptional speed but what impresses me even more about him is his cutback ability and balance. I've seen multiple times where he's close to being tackled or almost falling down and then somehow gets upright and keeps running. He's not easily tackled even though he's considered a speed back. Once Tyner gets in the open field, forget about it, because he's going to score a touchdown. If the defense doesn't wrap him up somewhere near the line of scrimmage, he's capable of breaking a big run every time he has the ball in his hands." - Adam Gorney, West Analyst, Rivals.com
Why he's a five-star: "Tyner has that rare combination of speed, balance and vision that makes him a potential game-breaker at the next level. He's not a track kid playing running back but is a true football player who can avoid hits and bounce off them as well. The injury issue is a slight concern, but when you watch him on film and see the potential he has, you have to look past it. He's also a big kid, this isn't a tiny running back who can fly. This is a big back with strong legs who can gain yardage after contact as well as run away from anyone." - Mike Farrell, National Analyst, Rivals.com
His coach says: "Whether you call it game speed, this speed or that speed, he's got it. He's the fastest guy I've ever coached and that includes coaching 19 years at the college level. ... He already had speed so the things he can improve on he has improved on. He's learned to run with his shoulder pads down more, he's learned to run between the tackles better, he's just played tremendous." - Beaverton Aloha coach Chris Casey
Odds and ends: As a sophomore, Tyner rushed for 1,821 yards and 19 touchdowns and set the state record in the 100-meter dash with a wind-aided time of 10.35 seconds. That time was the fifth-fastest time in the nation last year. Tyner was voted the state's top offensive player as well, the first time a sophomore won the award. McDonald's fast food is a favorite for Tyner, who can also play the piano.
NFL player comparison: LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles