National Signing Day by position: Top DB classes
CLASS OF 2019 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position | Team
CLASS OF 2020 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position
The 2019 recruiting class featured a number of impressive defensive backs, and a few schools were able to put together some outstanding groups. Take a look at the five best defensive back classes of the 2019 recruiting cycle.
1. TEXAS A&M
Signed: Erick Young (Rivals Rating: 6.1), Brian Williams (RivalsRating: 5.9), Demani Richardson (Rivals Rating: 5.9), and Elijah Blades (Rivals Rating: 5.9)
Texas A&M hasn’t really had a major shortage of talent over the last few years, but this defensive back haul should help take its secondary to the next level. Safety Erick Young is a five-star and has the ability to contribute right away. There was some disagreement over Brian Williams’ ranking, but there is no doubting he has the skills to play at various positions on defense. Demani Richardson was an important signee who the Aggies will rely heavily on over the course of his career in College Station. Junior college defensive back Elijah Blades has a ton of upside and was a highly rated prospect as a high school prospect. Look for the additional develop he got in junior college to help him see the field quickly.
2. FLORIDA STATE
Signed: Akeem Dent (Rivals Rating: 6.1), Brendan Gant (Rivals Rating:6.0), Travis Jay (Rivals Rating: 5.8), Jarvis Brownlee (Rivals Rating:5.8), and Renardo Green (Rivals Rating: 5.7)
Seminoles fans didn’t get the recruiting class they wanted, but the group of defensive backs Willie Taggart is bringing in is one of the best in the country. Five-star Akeem Dent is a long cornerback with excellent coverage skills. He’ll be counted on to lock down the opposing team’s best receiver. Brendan Gant is a big safety with a knack for the big hit. His presence in the secondary should intimidate opposing receivers, just like he did in the Under Armour All-America Game. Florida State also got another tall and long cornerback in Travis Jay. He brings a lot of versatility to the secondary. Jarvis Brownlee and Renardo Green help fill out this defensive back class and provide a lot of quality depth to the group.
Signed: Jordan Battle (Rivals Rating: 6.0), Marcus Banks (Rivals Rating: 6.0), Brandon Turnage (Rivals Rating: 5.8), and Jeffery Carter (Rivals Rating: 5.8)
Nick Saban is retooling his defense, and this group of defensive backs will go a long way toward that quick turnaround. Jordan Battle very nearly earned his fifth star at the Under Armour All-America Game because of his technique, athleticism, ability to create turnovers and imposing presence. Marcus Banks was also a five-star candidate because of his impressive combination of size, quickness, and technique. He has as high a ceiling as anyone in this class. Brandon Turnage and Jeffery Carter are talented and big defensive backs who will help replenish the Alabama secondary.
Signed: Woodi Washington (Rivals Rating: 6.0), Jeremiah Criddell (Rivals Rating: 5.8), Jaden Davis (Rivals Rating: 5.8), and Jamal Morris (Rivals Rating: 5.8)
Sooners fans have been hoping to see more improvement on the defensive side of the ball, and these defensive backs that signed with Oklahoma should help make the secondary a more formidable unit. Woodi Washington is a big, physical defensive back with natural instincts and the ability to make plays with the ball in his hands. Sooners fans should be really excited about him. Jaden Davis is the other cornerback in this group of four. His athleticism and speed are his greatest attributes, and his technique is solid. Jeremiah Criddell could play cornerback or safety, but he may be a better fit as a safety in Oklahoma’s system. Jamal Morris is a pure safety with great size and shows plenty of anticipation.
Signed: Andrew Booth (Rivals Rating: 6.1), Sheridan Jones (Rivals Rating: 5.9), Joseph Charleston (Rivals Rating: 5.9), Jalyn Phillips (Rivals Rating: 5.7), and Ray Thornton (Rivals Rating: 5.7)
The decision for fifth on this list was tightly contested, with Georgia, Michigan and Texas nipping at Clemson’s heels but the fact that the Tigers signed a five-star, two players with 5.9 Rivals Ratings and a total of five players gave them the edge. Cornerback Andrew Booth can do it all as a cornerback and is very good with the ball in his hands. Look for him to have an early impact on this Clemson defense. Sheridan Jones and Joseph Charleston are both big, physical cornerbacks that know how to shut down opposing receivers. Jaylen Phillips and Ray Thornton bring unique skill sets to the table, and they are both great athletes that play with discipline and have reliable instincts.