The Early Signing Period is here at last! AZ Desert Swarm has you covered and will be bringing you analysis of the signees throughout the offseason.
Let’s take a closer look at 3-star offensive lineman signee Elijha Payne.
Arizona’s offensive line continues to change for the better under Brennan Carroll. Not only did the play improve from Year One to Year Two, but the players that Carroll is bringing in is definitely a welcome sight. Payne is UA’s second highest ranking OL signee of the 2023 class and he is a good one.
One of the first things that stand out about Payne is his size. He has a fantastic frame, sitting at 6-foot-7 and around 285 pounds. He carries his weight well and can easily add on a lot of good weight to his frame once he gets to Tucson.
Payne is surprisingly nimble and athletic for his size. He has above average footwork and has quickness with his feet to boot. His lateral movement is smooth and he can shift quickly to engage the pass rusher.
He has good lower body strength and sets a good base when engaging with his blocks. He has a nice, long wingspan as well and does a good job locking onto his opponent.
Payne doesn’t bend very much and doesn’t really have that upper body flexibility yet. This causes him to play with higher pad level. However, he more than makes up for it with his aggressive playstyle and overall talent.
He will be coming to Tucson with a nice set of skills that will only get better and a high ceiling.