Ray Lewis. Ronnie Lott. Mike Singletary. What do these three present and future hall-of-fame players have in common? They are all tremendous tacklers. When you watch Stanley Sylverain play, you will see another elite tackler. The 6-foot-2, 215 pound safety from Golden Gate high school is just a solid football player. If you are looking for a player that will get the job done for you, look no further than Sylverain.
Sylverain is a very underrated football player. He is a tremendous athlete that can play safety and linebacker. He has the speed to get from sideline to sideline, the size to come up in run support, and the ball skills to go after the ball at its highest point in the air. Although he doesn't have any offers at this point, I expect that to change during his senior season.
"This was my first year playing a lot of linebacker. I usually play safety, but I enjoy both positions. I enjoy coming up to the line-of-scrimmage and hitting people, but I also enjoy dropping back in coverage and sticking people one-on-one. I'm not going to lie, there isn't much better than getting after someone across the middle."
Although he jumps back and forth between linebacker and safety, there is one player that he tries to model his game after.
"Sean Spence from Miami is a beast. He is fast, strong, can play in coverage, and get after the quarterback. If there is someone that I play like, it is definitely him."
With the change of positions, most people still project him as a safety at the next level, but feel he has the frame to gain weight and big an impact linebacker. Nonetheless, Sylverain is just ready for that first offer and is ready for his final high school season.
"I am really looking forward to my senior year and the recruiting process. I really want our team to do well. I hope we can get a state championship. Personally, I am working hard to make a name for myself and prove that I can be an impact player in college. I would love to lead our team in tackles and maybe the area. During the year I will take some visits. I am looking at plenty of schools, but most importantly, they have to have a good graduation rate and offer a great education. I am completely open to any school, as long as it's a good fit for me."
Sylverain didn't have an opportunity to visit a great deal of schools over the last few months, but did make one trip that he enjoyed.
"I went to South Florida and had a very good time. They are a pretty good program that is definitely on the rise. They are still developing and improving every year. Outside of them, I didn't take any other visits. I've been looking at the University of Florida, University of Miami, West Virginia, and the University of North Carolina. All of these schools have good academics and good programs."
There are a lot of fast, athletic players in Florida, but there is something special that separates Sylverain from other athletes.
"I have a lot of passion for this game. I just love football. I love everything about it. I think that is what makes me standout. People can tell I love this game and I play hard all the time. On the field, my tackling ability is what stands out. I pride myself on making every tackle. I have solid vision and I look at the opponent as a tackling dummy and it helps me focus on every play. I will admit that I need to continue to improve on opening my hips in pass coverage, but that will continue to improve with work."
As a junior, Sylverain had 90 tackles, 5.5 sacks, and 3 forced fumbles, while maintaining a 3.0 GPA.
If you have any questions or comments, Tom Loy, of FlaVarsity.com, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.