The Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge presented by adidas is this weekend in Indianapolis with many of the nation’s top prospects set to participate. Here is a look at the five schools in the SEC whose fans should be watching with the most interest.
The roster is loaded with players from Louisiana, several of which are still priority targets for the Tigers in 2018 and 2019 classes. The group is highlighted by five-star wide receiver Terrace Marshall, the nation’s No. 20 overall player. Marshall is uncommitted and many believe he will end up at LSU, but TCU and Texas A&M are also heavily in the mix. In the class of 2019, the field is loaded with Louisiana’s top stars, including former LSU commit four-star defensive back commit Derek Stingley and 2019 LSU offensive line commitment Kardell Thomas. Beyond the top talent from Louisiana, several LSU targets from Texas and Georgia, like Rivals100 linebacker Zakoby McClain, will also be in attendance. The Tigers might not have as many commits as some schools now, but when it’s all said and done, several future LSU players are likely competing in the event.
The state of Tennessee is well-represented in the field at the event, highlighted by Rivals100 Vols wide receiver commit Alontae Taylor. But it’s not just Taylor that Vols fans will have their eyes on during the event. Several top underclassmen from the state are set to compete, with four-star wide receiver Trey Knox being the most notable. Knox has quickly emerged as one of the top players in his class and already has a national offer sheet. Obviously Tennessee is trying to keep him close to home and will be keeping an eye on his showing in Indy. The Vols are also heavily involved with 2018 Rivals250 wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase, who recently put the school in his top three.
It’s a great year for talent in the state of Missouri, and Tigers fans already know it could be a banner year in recruiting as a result. The top two players Tigers fans will be watching in Indianapolis are both on the defensive line: Rivals100 prospect Michael Thompson and Rivals250 defensive end Ronnie Perkins. Both are considered to be among the best defensive linemen in the nation, and there’s a chance they will be playing side-by-side for the Tigers in years to come. A third four-star Missouri defensive lineman, Daniel Parker, will also be at the event and is also being recruited by the Tigers. Missouri is also recruiting Texas linebacker Chad Bailey, a Rivals250 prospect who would be a nice fit playing behind linemen like Thompson and Perkins at the next level. If Missouri fans have their way, a good portion of their future defense could be working out together in Indianapolis.
Instead of eating pies and going on scavenger hunts, a lot of the same guys who were at Auburn for their Big Cat recruiting weekend on Saturday will be competing at the Rivals Five-Star Challenge in a few days. The lone Auburn commit competing is running back Shaun Shivers, who could really excel in this environment with his speed and quickness. So many other Auburn targets will be there too. The Tigers either lead or are in the top group for Asa Martin, Kearis Jackson, Channing Tindall, Trey Hill, Christian Armstrong, Richard Jibunor and Zakoby McClain. Auburn could be called the favorite for McClain, Jubinor and Martin at this time with all three likely making decisions this summer.
One of the most intriguing ones for Auburn fans is five-star quarterback Justin Fields. He is a Penn State commit, but he is in communication with Auburn and it will be interesting to hear the chatter behind the scenes this week. Another in-state prospect, Clay Webb, is one Auburn fans have to have their eye on.
Kirby Smart and the Georgia Bulldogs signed a top class in 2017, so the Bulldog fans are getting a little restless in June with only five commitments for 2018. Quite a few top targets for the Dawgs will be competing at Five-Star Challenge, so Bulldog Nation will need to stay glued to Rivals.com to find out how out how they perform and what the recruiting scoop is.
Christopher Smith, a 2018 commit will be recruiting, and 2019 five-star wide receiver commit Jadon Haselwood could be one of the top talents there. Others to track for UGA fans are Channing Tindall, Kearis Jackson, Trey Dean, Keiondre Jones, John FitzPatrick, Trey Hill, Derrick McLendon and Justin Fields. Dean is not far from a decision and Georgia is believed to be at or near the top of his list. FitzPatrick is another one who is expected to commit soon and the Dawgs have had him on campus three times this spring. Quite a few guys in Indianapolis could end up being Bulldogs when Signing Day rolls around.