Rivals.com - How things stand with 2022's top available linebackers
football Edit

How things stand with 2022's top available linebackers

Harold Perkins
Harold Perkins (Sam Spiegelman)

There are still some elite linebackers in the 2022 class who have yet to commit and some who have made pledges that are still being recruited by other schools.

Here is a look at the latest news on those prospects.

*****

MORE: How things stand with top available QBs | RBs | WRs | OTs | OGs/OCs | DEs | DTs

CLASS OF 2022 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Position | Team | State

CLASS OF 2023 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Position | Team | State

RIVALS TRANSFER TRACKER: Stories/coverage | Message board

RIVALS CAMP SERIES: Info/coverage on 2021 camp series

*****

The four-star outside linebacker from Baltimore St. Frances has kept his recruitment close to the vest over time, but in the last few months three schools have started to clearly emerge as contenders in his recruitment.

Penn State, Maryland and South Carolina are the three vying for Barham’s services, but others are trying to stay involved as well. The Nittany Lions might have a slight edge, but because Barham doesn’t do many interviews and give too much information away it’s still hard to know.

*****

Stanford coach David Shaw was at Bailey’s game on Saturday night as Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei beat Anaheim (Calif.) Servite in a thriller. The Cardinal have definitely made Bailey, who plays more as an edge rusher than outside linebacker, a top priority.

UCLA is very high on the list, and Bailey has visited the Rose Bowl multiple times so far this season. USC should also be watched, especially since Bailey is waiting to see who gets hired as head coach and then make a decision from there. The four-star hopes the coaching choice is made as soon as possible.

*****

James committed to Florida over the summer and it was a massive pledge for the Gators since the Mobile (Ala.) Faith Academy standout is so versatile and dominant on defense. But James backed off his pledge in recent days and it’s a huge hit.

The high four-star now looks headed to either Georgia or Alabama. Right now, it’s too close to call between the Bulldogs and the Crimson Tide, but no one else appears to be in the picture.

*****

LSU and Texas are still very much in the picture, but it would be a surprise at this point if Perkins did not end up at Texas A&M as the Aggies are considered the team out in front. The four-star linebacker was back in College Station this past weekend with a host of other elite players – many of whom also play on defense.

The Tigers are in it, but the coaching situation there muddies up the water quite a bit, and the Longhorns cannot be discounted, either. But if the pick had to be made today it would easily be Texas A&M.

*****

If it’s not already clear that Texas A&M is preparing to load up on defense, then here’s some more evidence: It looks like the Aggies are very much in front for White’s commitment. Georgia was considered to be the frontrunner, but the Bulldogs have moved in other directions as Texas A&M, Ohio State and others became the top teams for the four-star outside linebacker and edge rusher.

The Aggies have also recruited the area decently well in recent years so it wouldn’t be a surprise if White ends up in College Station.