Friday, May 31, 2013

Scouting Report: Kalen Ballage

Peyton (CO) Falcon athlete Kalen Ballage
Name: Kalen Ballage
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 215 lbs.
High school: Peyton (CO) Falcon
Position: Running back, wide receiver, linebacker
Class: 2014

Notes: Holds offers from Arizona State, Boise State, Colorado, Colorado State, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Kansas State, Michigan, Michigan State, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon State, Tulsa, Utah, Vanderbilt, Washington State, and Wyoming . . . Claims a 4.37 forty . . . Benches 370 lbs. . . . Squats 485 lbs. . . . Scored 21 offensive touchdowns and made 45 tackles as a junior in 2012 . . . Unranked on ESPN . . . Rivals 4-star, #6 ATH, #136 overall . . . Scout 3-star, #32 RB . . . 247 Sports 4-star, 90 grade, #30 ATH

Strengths: Very good speed . . . Excellent running form in open field . . . Opponents will have difficulty chasing him down from behind . . . Nice change of direction skills . . . Can swivel hips with ball in hand to get skinny and break tackles while keeping shoulders square . . . Catches ball with hands away from his body . . . Shows very good recovery speed on defense to chase plays from behind

Weaknesses: Mediocre vision . . . Occasionally misses cutback lanes . . . Carries the ball loosely away from body . . . Could have turnover issues in traffic . . . Not the smoothest pass catcher and does not snatch ball out of the air . . . Does not show great defensive instincts . . . Waits for ball carriers to come to him instead of attacking . . . Not an aggressive tackler . . . Prefers to drag down or gator roll players to ground rather than driving through ball carriers

Projection: Running back.  Ballage is ranked as an athlete, and some people have suggested that he could play outside linebacker in college.  However, I think he lacks the instincts and physicality to play linebacker at the next level.  He looks like an offensive player, most likely a running back, but perhaps a wideout if he works a little more on his catching skills.  He does not seem to be a particularly physical runner, but he's big and strong enough to break arm tackles; if he gets into the open field, he could be very dangerous.

Reminds me of: Carlos Brown

Likelihood of committing to Michigan: Ballage has expressed fairly strong interest in Michigan, but he seems to be pretty wide open right now. The in-state schools don't seem to be much of a threat, but he's high on schools like Arizona State, Nebraska, and Oregon, the last of which has not offered yet.  It looks to be a long road between now and a commitment.

Highlights are available on Hudl.


  1. He has an interesting feel for fashion.

    Seeing the cuts is an underrated gift, it may be more useful that either speed or power.

    Gordy Bell and Jamie Morris were neither true blazers or all that tough to knock down once you hit em, but both of those guys could see the seem and could real quick get to the other side of a blockers hip and be gone.

    Peppers has it, but aside from Joe Mixon this year, I haven't seen a lot of that in the kids that Hoke has been recruiting as RBs. I think he wants to pound your back 7 into submission.

    Jamie did have a notable run through some guys chest on the way to a TD against Alabama, but mostly he would just cut away.

    1. I think Ballage is taking notes from Von Miller's wardrobe.

      I agree that seeing the cuts is underrated. This could be because of what can happen when cuts are consistently missed. You can be Bo Jackson physically, but if you get Michael Shaw syndrome or try to burrow when there's a giant hole on the backside, you won't be getting many yards.