BEAVERTON, OR -- After struggling at times on Saturday, including throwing four interceptions in his final 7ON contest, Texas commit Tyrone Swoopes led his Alpha Talon team to a 15-7 upset of the top-seeded Alpha Speed, which features the explosive 1-2 combination of Ricky Seals-Jones and Illinois product Laquon Treadwell, who resembles a slightly smaller RSJ physically and even sports a matching headband.
A late touchdown pass to convert a third down near the goalline, followed by a well-thrown fade route for the conversion helped propel Swoopes and his team to the upset as the intensity level increased on the field for the start of tourney after pool play yesterday.
At times, Swoopes was still inconsistent with his accuracy, but his decision-making was better with no interceptions. His footwork is still poor, as he doesn't keep his feet live when he changes his body positioning, which seriously impacts his velocity. Another major issue is where he holds the ball -- low and around the middle of his chest, which slows his release. All things that will improve with higher-level coaching.
But as he has done at other events, the Whitewright product raised his level of play when it mattered the most and even though his play-to-play consistency often lacks, he still makes enough big-time throws to convince an observer that he has what it takes to be productive at the next level.
As for Ricky Seals-Jones, he scored the only touchdown for Alpha Speed and once again showed his ability to separate to getting physical with defensive backs and elevating for the football. However, he wanted helped out by his quarterback Christian Harkenburg, who often failed to anticipate when he would break open and then hit the window before the safety could get over the top.
He also suffered from the loss of Treadwell for much of the middle part of the game after a collision over the middle of the field, but returned later. The OU target who appears headed to Michigan has been one of the most impressive receivers during the tournament with his combination of size and quickness. If he does end up a Wolverine, Brady Hoke is getting a good one. Likewise, if OU misses out, it's a serious loss for the Sooners.
Still, the story of the day was the improved play from Swoopes, who has relatively little experience in these settings and typically acclimates as events move along. He's still extraordinarily raw, but even in a setting that doesn't showcase his talents, they can still shine through.