Meet the 5-foot-1 middle school recruit with Odell Beckham Jr. skills and SEC dreams

Meet the 5-foot-1 middle school recruit with Odell Beckham Jr. skills and SEC dreams

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Meet the 5-foot-1 middle school recruit with Odell Beckham Jr. skills and SEC dreams

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Justin Gabriel is a rising eighth-grader in the Walled Lake (Mich.) Western school system. He’s listed at all of 5-foot-1 and 100 pounds by Michigan high school sports website The D Zone.

Yet, the kid’s a stud, as evidenced by the above Odell Beckham Jr.-esque grab. The best part is the young fella in the No. 9 jersey on the sideline looking at the camera afterwards, as if to say, “Um, is this kid real? We might be the same size, but I don’t think I belong in the same camp as him.”

Lucky catch, you say? Hardly.

Take this high-flying snag at Football University camp earlier this summer as Exhibit B.

Or this highlight reel from his seventh-grade youth football campaign. The kid’s legit talented.

It’s not luck when you capture Most Valuable Player honors at a camp run by former Michigan star and current Carolina Panthers wide receiver Devin Funchess.

At least one school — Missouri-based NAIA program Culver-Stockton College — has already offered the youngster, and it’s hard to imagine his last scholarship will come in seventh grade.

He visited Michigan in March and listed both Alabama and LSU as his interests to The D Zone.

The youngster’s older brother, Javon Gabriel, hauled in 36 receptions for 608 yards and seven touchdowns as a senior during Walled Lake Western’s run to Michigan’s Division II state semifinals this past season. He’s listed at 5-foot-7, 153 pounds, and that didn’t stop him from earning a football scholarship to Canada’s Concordia University. Talented family, those Gabriels.

As for the diminutive Justin, he was asked by The D Zone what he’d like to accomplish this offseason, and you might’ve guessed his response: “To get bigger, faster, stronger and smarter!”

 

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Meet the 5-foot-1 middle school recruit with Odell Beckham Jr. skills and SEC dreams
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