football Edit

Rivals Rankings Week: How top four-stars can earn a fifth star

CJ Carr
CJ Carr (

The question Rivals national analysts are asked by prospects most often is: "How can I get my fifth star?" The latest update to the 2024 Rivals250 just came out and there are some really high-caliber players who just missed adding their fifth star.

Here's a look at the 10 highest-ranking four-star prospects and what kept them from adding that fifth star – and what they need to do to earn that elite status.



Sunday: Who should be No. 1?

Monday: Five-star countdown | Meet the new five-stars

Tuesday: Rivals 250 released | Ten prospects on the verge of five-star status | Gorney's thoughts

Wednesday: Offensive position rankings released

Thursday: Defensive position rankings released

Friday: State rankings released | Who will finish as top RB?

Saturday: Rankings Roundtable



Carr has hovered just outside of five-star range since the first 2024 Rivals250 was released more than a year ago. The Michigan legacy who committed to Notre Dame in June of 2022 has nearly every physical tool a coach could want in their quarterback. Carr has the size, arm strength, mechanics, footwork and consistent accuracy, and he's put up impressive stats.

He's about as solid as you could ask for, but a five-star rating is reserved for players who the national analyst staff thinks could end up a first-round pick in the NFL Draft. Consistency against top-end competition is something the national analyst staff is still looking for from every five-star. Carr isn't challenged very often in the fall, so continuing to play at an elite level, even when there are not multiple high-caliber prospects on the other side of the ball, could help him get over the hump.



Robinson has a skill set that should allow him to have plenty of success at the next level. A longtime Georgia commit, the 6-foot-1 Robinson has the size, length, speed and coverage instincts to blanket receivers and create turnovers. He has the tools to be physical with receivers and run with almost anyone who comes his way.

One of the most difficult things for cornerbacks to do is maintain their speed when they need to turn and run with receivers or break out of their backpedal when a receiver cuts. The elite cornerbacks can accelerate in their transitions, not just maintain their speed. Robinson faces elite competition on an almost weekly basis, but his speed in transition is something the national analyst staff is keeping a close eye on before Robinson is awarded his fifth star.



No player in this update to the Rivals250 made a higher debut than Coleman. At 6-foot-3, Coleman puts tremendous stress on defenses. At his size, his short-area quickness is very impressive and he has the long speed to just outrun defenders. Coleman has outstanding ball skills and that hand-eye coordination should serve him well at the next level.

While watching Coleman's film and throughout the spring camp season, one of the things that stands out most is how aggressive he is as a route-runner. He snaps off his routes and defenders look like they're stuck in the mud. All that being said, there have been receivers in the past who regress as they get older. Consistency will be the key to Coleman earning his fifth star down the road.


Like many others on this list, Lester has been a highly ranked prospect since the beginning of the 2024 rankings cycle. His 6-foot-2 frame, impressive speed, length and athleticism all make him one of the best prospects in this class. The Florida native has a basketball background, and it isn't hard to see that while watching him move on the field.

Lester covers a ton of ground, sort of gliding around in the secondary. Defensive backs who are such smooth runners like Lester can sometimes have trouble consistently sticking with quicker receivers who run really crisp, sharp routes. Lester has the tools to remain one of the highest-ranked players in this class, but his projected position could change from cornerback to safety, depending on the development he shows throughout the rest of his high school career.


Baker has the look of a five-star offensive tackle, and he is on the precipice of the coveted rating. The 6-foot-5, 290-pound Baker is an elite pass blocker thanks to his size, long arms, lateral quickness, hand placement and patience. As a run blocker, Baker can open holes for ball carriers and make key blocks down the field.

Top offensive linemen in the past have dominated at the point of attack against elite players, combining high-end athleticism with overwhelming power. Consistency in this area could earn Baker his fifth star.


The development Seaton has shown year over year has been exceptional. Now at IMG Academy, Seaton will play against many of the nation's top players during practice and in games. The early reports of his time at his new school have been good, and he got high marks for his play during IMG's spring game.

There are times when players have difficulty adjusting to a new team, new scheme or new coaching, especially against higher caliber players than they're used to. Seaton has played against a few elite prospects in the past but showing that there is no drop-off in his performance will go a long way toward pushing him up the rankings.

There's also a position value aspect to consider. A five-star prospect is a projected first-round pick in the NFL Draft and very few, if any, interior offensive linemen are drafted in the first round. Seaton played left tackle last season at Washington (D.C.) St. John's College High and he's already the starting left tackle for IMG but he has the frame and physical build of a player who could end up as a guard as he gets older. There have been five-star guards in the past, so it's certainly not out of the question for Seaton.


Listing Baker, Seaton and Pierre-Louis back-to-back-to-back in the Rivals250 was no accident. The national analyst staff is extremely high on all three prospects, but each is very different. If Baker is a pure tackle prospect and Seaton could play either, Pierre-Louis is a pure guard prospect.

There's a good chance he's the strongest prospect in this class. A year ago he bench pressed 225 pounds 26 times, which would have ranked in the top 15 for offensive linemen in this year's NFL Combine. Pierre-Louis also did that with an 80-inch wingspan, making it an even more impressive feat.

Even at 333 pounds, he's a great athlete at the position. He has the quickness to slide either direction and keep defensive linemen out of the backfield. Position value is the key factor when it comes to Pierre-Louis adding his fifth star. Interior offensive linemen are not drafted in the first round at a high rate and that is working against him. Again, there have been five-star guards in the past, so consistently dominating all comers will give Pierre-Louis the best chance of moving up the rankings.


There is so much to like about Brown as a prospect. He has an outstanding athletic profile for the position, posting a 10.7 in the 100 and winning back-to-back state championships on the wrestling mat. Brown flows to the ball carrier well, navigating any would-be blockers who get in his way by using a variety of techniques. He is a solid tackler who can overwhelm some ball carriers with strength and chase down others in the open field.

The question of position value came up again when the national analyst staff discussed Brown and the possibility of moving him up to a five-star prospect. Interior linebackers, especially ones who don't have elite size and length, are rarely selected in the first round of the NFL Draft.

Brown is as solid as they come, but the national analyst team is looking to see what other elements Brown can add to his game to make up for some of what he lacks in measurables. Development like this could be a big factor in his ranking and down the road as an NFL prospect.



Wesco is one of the best outside receiver prospects in this class. The lean 6-foot-2 Clemson commit hauled in 17 touchdown catches last season and averaged more than 20 yards per catch. If he gets a free release off the line of scrimmage, there is a good chance he is coming down with the catch. Wesco can win jump balls and compete with physical defensive backs who try to knock him off his route.

Receiver is a premier position, and this year's class is outstanding. The national analyst staff looked at Wesco as a potential five-star and the question of physical development came up. Wesco has a very slight build and weighs in at just 170 pounds. He does well against stronger and more physical defensive backs at the high school level, but there are times when they give him a difficult time in press coverage. Seeing continued physical development could push Wesco into five-star territory.


Riddick has impressed from day one of the rankings cycle and there haven't been many questions about his game. He has the size (6-foot-2, 205 pounds), strength, quickness and speed to dominate the competition during the season. Riddick is a playmaker on the defensive side of the ball as well, hauling in multiple interceptions, knocking down passes and wreaking havoc in the backfield as a blitzer. He can rush the quarterback off the edge and defend the edge on running plays.

Riddick still has room to grow, giving him a higher ceiling than some other five-star candidates. Since very few off-the-ball linebackers like Riddick are selected in the first round of the NFL Draft, position value is a factor in his ranking. While Riddick has been very productive throughout his high school career, the national analyst team is also keeping an eye out for Riddick's continued dominance in the fall. The expectation is that a five-star prospect consistently dominates the competition, especially lesser competition.

Last season, Riddick didn't get the opportunity to play against many high-end prospects, so posting a productive and dominant senior campaign could go a long way toward pushing Riddick up to five-star status.