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Making the Case: Who has a chance to jump into No. 1 spot?

During each ranking release, the Rivals team of analysts discusses every prospect at every position, which ultimately leads to the No. 1 spot. There are, of course, rarely guarantees when it comes to the top overall player.

In today's Making the Case, regional analysts Sam Spiegelman (South-Central), Adam Friedman (Mid-Atlantic) and Chad Simmons (Southeast) state their arguments about which player in their respective regions has a claim to the No. 1 spot.


MORE MAKING THE CASE: Who will be the top 2021 QB?

CLASS OF 2021 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Position | Team | State

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

COVERAGE: Rivals Transfer Tracker | Rivals Camp Series




In the last RCS stop in New Orleans, Smith was the DL MVP and put on a clinic displaying his pass-rush moves and dominance in 1-on-1s. Since then, Smith has transformed his body and shed about 45 pounds to become a leaner force in the trenches.

Smith, in his new frame, has played multiple spots up front for Terrebonne (La.) this fall, showing off the ability to take on double- and triple-teams and still find ways to make plays consistently. He's even seen action as an offensive tackle where, as you'd expect, he dominates moving bodies off the ball.

Smith boasts immense size (6-foot-5, 300 pounds) with a high degree of rare speed, quickness, explosiveness and athleticism. He's down to LSU, Alabama, Georgia, Miami and Florida, with a decision expected during the Early Signing Period. - Sam Spiegelman


Mims is a player that shot up the rankings after his performance at the Rivals Camp Series, and then as one of the few underclassmen at the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge in 2019. He is a very athletic offensive tackle, and he looks like a college player about to be drafted, not a high school senior set to enroll in college next month. Mims has a great frame, he moves well and the Georgia commit plays a premium position.

I had seen him practice numerous times and compete at multiple camps, but I saw him play a game for the first time this fall and he really impressed. Mims does not play the best competition week in and week out, but he cannot control that. He can control his performance, and it has been dominant each week. He has added leadership to his game this season, and he has made a strong case to be one of the top players this cycle, maybe no. 1. - Chad Simmons



Caleb Williams
Caleb Williams (

Over the last year or so I've mentioned Williams as a possible No. 1 in the Rivals250 a couple times, but the conversation has remained centered around the linemen. They're all exceptional talents and their position value is right there with quarterbacks.

Williams is without a doubt the best quarterback in this class, but he hasn't had the opportunity to add to his resume this season like Mims, Smith and current No. 1 Korey Foreman, who have at a few camps to keep from getting rusty. Williams has been staying sharp by working out privately or with a small group but nothing where scouts could evaluate him.

Could he move up to No. 1 in the Rivals250? The only thing that would push him up those last few spots would be related to position value because we have nothing else new on which to base the move. - Adam Friedman