We have often said speed thrills and kills in football. Dylan Lee is among the fastest players in his graduating class from across Kentucky and arguably the very fastest. This will serve him very well going forward.Fletcher W. Long, Senior Scout and Editorial Board, KPGFootball
One of the biggest misnomers in the game of football is recognition of what is fast for each stage of development. Too many coaches get involved in middle school football and want to spread around the commonwealth their marquee players run 4.5s or 4.6-second, 40-yard dashes.
Interestingly enough, these reported “speedsters” seldom seem to run sprints for the Track & Field team. We know, in football, that a 4.6-second, 40-yard dash is clipping off 100-meters on the track in 11.2 or so seconds. We know all track competitive times are laser-timed.
Track conversions to football combine times aren’t perfect. One-hundred meter times have a reaction time in them (nobody reacts instantly), while 40-yard dash times don’t (so much), which skews the conversion. There is a difference between the starter’s gun in Track and “…we will start the clock on the athlete’s first movement,” at the football prospect camp or combine.
Do you know how many middle school football players in Kentucky run the 100-meters under 12-seconds? Well, none; since two-time Kentucky Middle School, 100-meter champion, Dylan Lee’s, personal best is 12-seconds.
Let’s get this fully and finally settled. A 12-second, 100-meter dash is clipping off a 40-yard dash (on the laser) in the high-4.8s-4.9-seconds. So an 8th-grade footballer, running a laser-timed 4.9-second 40, is flying.
Tennessee Future Stars had a RB named Elijah Howard who was the national, 100-meter, AAU sprint champion in middle school. He ran a 4.5-second 40 when he played for Tennessee Future Stars in 2014. Howard also broke 11-seconds that year in the 100-meters and was a national champion at that discipline for his age group.
Howard’s incredible 40-time was credible. It reconciled with his 100-meter time.
Of course, Howard was arguably the fastest player to ever play for either team in the Kentucky-Tennessee Future Stars Classic. This game has a 13-year history.
To recap, the chances there are any 4.5’s or 4.6’s at 40-yards playing in middle school football in Kentucky are doubtful (at best) to darn near impossible. Now when your middle school football coach tells KPGFootball their 8th-grade RB or WR/DB runs a 4.6-40 yard dash, you will excuse our rolling of the eyes and the extent to which that information detrimentally impacts our crediting what that coach tells us prospectively.
Dylan Lee clips off a 40-yard dash in the high 4.8s to low 4.9s. That is elite speed on a laser timed 40-yard dash for a rising 9th-grader.
Lee played WR/DB for his middle school team. His highlights, above linked, demonstrate third-level separation speed right there in the film.
Will Lee be fast enough to split wide offensively for the Raiders this coming Fall? Yes, we would think so. Lots of WRs are running 40s around that same time even in the 6A classification.
However, Lee also plays DB. Corners who are 6′ tall (as Lee) and can run like Lee can get early PT in a defensive backfield. We believe it likely this speedster will align at either safety or corner pretty early over his freshman season.
Either way, Lee would like to charge his way onto the field and under intense glare of the KHSAA’s Friday Night Lights. Will he do this quickly like he does everything else? We don’t see why not. After all, Lee is super fast.
This is Coach HB Lyon, reporting for KPGFootball, and we’re JUST CALLING IT LIKE WE SEE IT!
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