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Rivals Camp Series Houston: Five predictions

CLASS OF 2019 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position | Team

CLASS OF 2020 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | State | Position

Zachary Evans
Zachary Evans (Rivals.com)

The Rivals Camp Series presented by adidas makes its way to the Lone Star State for one of two trips in 2019 this weekend. Here are five predictions heading into the Houston stop.

RELATED: Rivals Camp Series schedule and FAQs

1. Evans will continue to dominate 

As we kick off the 2020 recruiting cycle, five-star Zachary Evans is sitting right behind quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei as the No. 2 prospect in the country. Evans is certainly going to insert his name into the conversation as the No. 1 overall player, and that begins this weekend.

Evans proved to us at last year’s Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge presented by adidas and again at the Future 50 that he is a mismatch when it comes to one-on-ones. He’s too quick for linebackers to cover and too physically imposing for defensive backs. The crazy part: His receiving skills are not even the strongest part of his game.

Expect Evans to shine the brightest of any prospect in attendance at the Houston camp, showing out in one-on-one drills and flashing some of his absurd athleticism in any and all open-field tackle simulations.

2. Can another WR surpass Demas as No. 1?

Demond Demas
Demond Demas (NICK KRUEGER | rivals.com)

This camp will feature a good chunk of Texas’ premier wide receivers, most notably four-stars Demond Demas, Troy Omeire, Devin Price, Collin Sullivan and Parker Washington. Demas currently sits as the state’s top wide receiver prospect, but there are multiple contenders for that title.

Omeire and Price are two candidates to emerge as the top receivers out of the Houston camp. Omeire recently clocked a 20.5 in a 200-meter split. He’ll have a chance to knock Demas off his throne. The same goes for Price, who has seen his recruitment blossom in recent weeks as schools place value on an absurdly athletic receiver who can dominate in 50-50 ball situations and runs crisp routes.

Other receivers to monitor include Washington, Sullivan, Thaddeus Johnson and sleeper Jalen Paxton.

Of course, to be No. 1 you have beat No. 1. Demas. He had been nursing a lingering knee injury, but he is supposedly going to be 100 percent for Sunday’s competition. That sets the stage for big vertical catches and incredible circus grabs all afternoon.

  3. 2021 OL will have their hands full with 2020 DL

Alec Bryant
Alec Bryant (Rivals.com)

The bulk of the talent at the Houston stop will be in the trenches. On the defensive side of the ball, Rivals250 ends Vernon Broughton and James Sylvester highlight the roster, along with four-stars Alec Bryant and Princely Umanmielen, as well as highly intriguing three-stars Robert Wooten and Chidozie Nwankwo and 2021 standout Tunmise Adeleye, among several others.

While those defensive linemen are jockeying for position in the rankings, they’ll have their work cut out for them against the likes of four-star offensive tackles Damieon George and Smart Chibuzo from the class of 2020. It should also make for a legitimate test for the 2021 crop, which features some of the most sought-after linemen in the state: Donovan Jackson, Hayden Connor, Bryce Foster, Reuben Fatheree II and Cullen Montgomery all have seen their recruitments reach new heights this spring.

4. A talented group of DBs will be on hand 

Jaylon Jones
Jaylon Jones (NICK KRUEGER | rivals.com)

It’s continually a theme: The Lone Star churns out phenomenal skill position prospects year in and year out. In the case of the 2020 class, much of the talent falls in the secondary.

The state’s top cornerback, Jaylon Jones, committed to Texas A&M earlier this month. He’ll have to defend that title against a slew of worthy candidates, such as new Rivals four-star Avery Helm, Donald Warnell, Denzel Blackwell and athlete Joshua Eaton, whose stock has risen quite a bit in the past month.

There’s as much or even more talent at the safety position. Longtime Rivals100 member Bryson Washington has an opportunity to display his skill-set against a talented set of pass-catchers and make a case to be Texas’ No. 1 safety. He won’t be alone, though, as new Rivals250 safety Xavion Alford will look to continue his rise in the rankings, along with Jerrin Thompson.

5. Who will emerge from the 2021 crop?  

There are plenty of intriguing skill players in Texas’ 2020 class, but there will be plenty of eyes keeping tabs on which pass-catchers make statements from the 2021 crop.

Two Houston-area prospects I'm keeping a lookout for include Latrell Neville and Cody Jackson. Certainly, this duo has already garnered its fair share of attention and, ideally, this camp should help us to sort through who’s in the discussion as the top wideout for next year’s recruiting cycle. Entering the camp, it appears you can't go wrong with either of them.