National Signing Day by position: Top DL classes
National Signing Day has come and gone. Recruiting classes are mostly finished and the results are ready to be dissected. Today, Rivals.com's position-by-position look at the 2019 cycle moves forward with the country’s top defensive line classes.
The Crimson Tide finished with the second-best recruiting class nationally and they loaded up with outstanding defensive line signees led by five-star Antonio Alfano, who dominated all week at the All-American Bowl. Alfano is already in Tuscaloosa and is quickly putting on weight. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him on the field early.
Other than the five-star recruit, Alabama also landed four-star defensive tackle Ishmael Sopsher, who picked the Crimson Tide over in-state power LSU. Four-star Byron Young could emerge as a superstar in this class and then Alabama also signed four-stars Justin Eboigbe, Braylen Ingraham and Kevin Harris. Massive three-star defensive tackle DJ Dale rounds out the excellent crop.
Dan Mullen pieced together an excellent defensive line group led by athletic defensive ends with length like four-stars Khris Bogle, who flipped from Alabama to the Gators, and Lloyd Summerall, one of three Lakeland stars to pick the in-state program.
Four-star Mohamoud Diabate from Auburn, Ala., fits that bill as well and he had a strong week at the All-American Bowl. Florida also went into the state of Georgia to land 6-foot-5, 305-pound four-star defensive tackle Jaelin Humphries, who could provide early help up the middle.
Loading up across the defensive line was a priority for Jim Harbaugh in this recruiting class and five-star defensive tackle Christopher Hinton could be special. He was completely unstoppable at the All-American Bowl and there doesn’t seem to be any questions about whether offensive tackle or defensive end would be his best position now. Hinton played inside in San Antonio and no one could even come close to slowing him down.
Four-star defensive tackle Mazi Smith and four-star defensive end Michael Morris from Boca Raton (Fla.) American Heritage are also standouts. Three-star recruits Davis Ojabo and Gabe Newburg are two others to watch.
An aggressive and relentless recruiting style by Mario Cristobal and his staff paid off handsomely as the Ducks landed five-star defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux, the only five-star signee in the entire Pac-12. There is a growing line of impressive defensive ends coming through Eugene with Jalen Jelks, Arik Armstead and DeForest Buckner being some of the most recent and Thibodeaux has the skills to be special.
Oregon didn’t stop there. Four-stars Keyon Ware-Hudson and Sua’ava Poti could be the Ducks’ future on the interior. Mase Funa, a four-star who missed his senior season because of injury, is special. The Ducks landed three-star defensive tackle Kristian Williams on National Signing Day, three-star Isaac Townsend has tremendous length and athleticism, three-star Treven Ma’ae has been impressive at numerous events and three-star defensive end Brandon Dorlus picked Oregon out of Deerfield Beach, Fla.
5. SOUTH CAROLINA
Five-star defensive end Zacch Pickens is by far the headliner in this class and he could have a huge impact for Will Muschamp’s club in the coming years. The Gamecocks also landed some impressive four-star prospects in Jaquaze Sorrells out of Florida, Joseph Anderson from Tennessee and JUCO defensive tackle Jahkeem Green.
South Carolina was not finished there. Three-star JUCO defensive end Devontae Davis is already 6-foot-4 and 250 pounds and then three-star Rodricus Fitten out of Atlanta (Ga.) Washington will be one to watch.