Mind of Mike: Farrell's reaction to updated 2021 Rivals100
The Mind of Mike is a dangerous place. Here are National Recruiting Director Mike Farrell’s thoughts on the latest release of the Rivals100 for the 2021 class.
RIVALS RANKINGS WEEK:
Wednesday: Rivals250 revealed
Thursday: Position rankings revealed
LOOKING AT THE TOP
The decision to move defensive end Korey Foreman to No. 1 overall was not an easy one. Some, including myself, felt Georgia quarterback and Oklahoma commit Brock Vandagriff had done enough this last rankings cycle to stay at No. 1, but others were concerned about his interceptions at the Rivals100 Five Star Challenge presented by adidas and some of the bad reads he made.
To me, the difference between No. 1 and No. 2 isn’t a big deal and both will be battling throughout the 2021 evaluations for the top spot, but I will say that Foreman is beyond impressive. He’s a huge defensive end with rare agility and I could see him growing into a defensive tackle down the road with rare pass rushing ability. I like Vandagriff a lot as well and think he’s going to be a huge quarterback in college with all the arm strength and accuracy to be special.
It was really a two-player battle between Foreman and Vandagriff. I feel J.T. Tuimoloau is an exceptional athlete but a bit too raw at this stage to be the top guy. However, his ceiling is a bit higher than many of the five-stars, so keep an eye out for him.
The safest pick right now among the five-stars is probably defensive end and Ohio State commitment Jack Sawyer, who should be a great player at the next level. Offensive guard Bryce Foster is also right up there when it comes to safe picks.
THE NEW FIVE-STARS
Here’s my breakdown of the four new five-stars in the 2021 class.
Brockermeyer looks the part for sure and reminds me a bit of Walker Little at the same stage. He has the size, length and technique to be a reliable left tackle at the next level and beyond and will only get better as he fills out his frame. Whoever lands him can plug him in early.
I actually like Mims a little better than Brockermeyer because of his athleticism and the fact that he was a defensive end and tight end who has grown into a tackle. Those kind of guys usually develop nicely and his upside is very high. He’s a bit more college-ready than Brockermeyer but perhaps doesn’t have the same ceiling, but it’s close.
Williams isn’t as polished as some of the five-stars, but his size and athletic ability make him a very intriguing prospect. He reminds me a bit of Taylor Mays for those who followed recruiting for a long time, although he’s not quite as athletic. I could see him being a huge safety or a linebacker at the next level and that versatility is compelling.
Foster made the biggest move of the new five-stars, shooting up 79 spots after dominating at the Five-Star Challenge. He’s a powerful and physical interior lineman who has tremendous strength and will continue to get better as he adds to his footwork. He’s a road grader for sure and could be a Quenton Nelson-type.
JUST MISSED THE CUT
Here are a few prospects that were considered for a five-star ranking but just missed the cut this time.
I don’t think there is any doubt that Egbuka is going to be a five-star at some point in this cycle. He’s just too talented. I’d expect it to happen after a big junior season, so keep an eye on him as he’s the best wide receiver in what appears to be a weaker group compared to 2020.
McCord, an Ohio State commitment, is a big kid with a live arm and he just needs to refine a few things. He relies on that big arm too much right now but as he learns to dial it back a bit, he could easily be a five-star.
The big debate in the Mid-Atlantic is whether McCord or Williams is the better prospect and it’s a coin toss right now. Williams is a bit more fluid in his motion and has a strong arm as well and he can extend the play a bit better. However, McCord is stronger and more powerful. This will be an interesting battle.
I love Lewis as a lean linebacker with a great frame to add weight and strength, which will make him an even bigger hitter than he is. He covers a lot of ground and is a quick twitch athletic ‘backer who explodes to the football.
I like Fisher’s upside quite a bit and he just needs to work on a few things to take that next step and be up there with our five-star offensive linemen. I’d like to see him be a little more aggressive and refine his footwork a bit as he tends to get off balance here and there. As he solidifies those things, watch out.
I like Page’s upside quite a bit and his athleticism and as more and more schools want players who can not only play the run but also chase the passer, he’s going to be a guy who fits that mold.
SCATTERSHOOTING THE RANKINGS
... The quarterback and offensive line positions are loaded in the 2021 class, but I also like the big defensive ends as well. We could have as many as five or six five-star offensive linemen, possibly four quarterbacks and also maybe three or four strongside defensive ends. Linebacker is top heavy, but two of the new additions to the Rivals100 play that position led by Lewis and followed by Junior Colson who is a great looking prospect.
... Running back doesn’t look great so far in 2021, which means whoever lands five-star Camar Wheaton will likely be getting the star of the class at the position. His top end speed intrigues me greatly and he can be a superstar.
... I don’t know why the rest of the industry isn’t as high on cornerback Corey Collier from Florida, but I think they will follow suit after a huge junior year. His film is beyond impressive.
... Mario Williams is a prospect that I really like at wide receiver. He isn’t the biggest receiver in the world, but he’s dynamic and will be one of those slots who can’t be covered.