Last week, Rivals.com released the initial Rivals100 for the class of 2020. The first ranked version of that list will not be out for several months, however, and prospects from around the country will be looking to earn their way into that ranking. Here are five from the Midwest who have a shot.
In the 2018 class, Lutheran North High School produced Rivals250 defensive end Ronnie Perkins, who would go on to sign with Oklahoma in December. In this 2020 class, Lutheran North head coach Carl Reed has almost a carbon copy of Perkins in Billingsley. Like Perkins, Billingsley could project to defensive end or the three-technique defensive tackle position in college. Plenty of schools are ready to give him that chance, as 12 have already offered scholarships including Georgia, Michigan, Missouri and that Oklahoma program where his former teammate is already enrolled.
A transfer from Warren (Mich.) Fitzgerald in the off-season, Boone goes to the Detroit Public School League power King Crusaders for his final two prep seasons. When we saw Boone a couple weeks back he looked every bit his listed 6-foot, 208 pounds, if not bigger. He is going to be a back in the mold of Bo Scarbrough or Derrick Henry if he doesn’t quit growing. Yet, at that size Boone still showed top-end change-of-direction quickness and explosiveness. Taller backs tend to run high, but Boone does a good job of staying behind his pads between the tackles and he has the speed to hit the home run around the edge. Six schools, led by Kansas, have already offered scholarships.
Drennen was strongly discussed for the initial Rivals100 class of 2020 preview released last week, but at the day’s end we decided we wanted to see more of the rising junior before committing to a rating. One of the issues is that he missed a good chunk of his sophomore season due to a lower leg injury, and that only gave us limited film to evaluate. The explosive running back is reportedly back to full health and generating positive buzz early in the off-season. Cincinnati, Indiana, Kentucky and Louisville have offered, but it appears many college programs are wanting to get another look at Drennen, as well.
Minnehaha Academy (Minn.) outside linebacker Kaden Johnson made the initial 2020 Rivals100, and quarterback Jalen Suggs is probably the most heavily recruited prospect at the school because he is a five-star on the basketball court. Lockett should not be overshadowed, however, because he showed last season he has the physical tools and the playmaker mentality that coaches look for in great wide receivers. Throw in some return skills as an added bonus, and the home-state Minnesota Golden Gophers are going to have plenty of company soon on Lockett’s offer list.
The recruitment of Mills is just starting to take off, with Iowa, Michigan, Notre Dame and Tennessee all offering since the start of February. A total of eight schools have now offered the jumbo defensive end, who looks like a strong candidate to eventually grow into a defensive tackle prospect. We had a chance to see Mills live in January at the EdgyTim EFT Showcase and were impressed by his size/athleticism combination. The state of Illinois has been in a talent slump recently, but 2020 looks like a rebound year and Mills is one of those prospects who is bringing recruiting respect back to the Land of Lincoln.