football Edit

Rivals100: Risers and Sliders

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Much of the attention in any rankings release is focused on who is No. 1 and the five stars (or those losing that fifth star). However, the latest release of the Rivals100 Presented By Under Armour for the class of 2016 is about much more than our new No. 1 and the fact that more five stars fell than were added. Take a careful look at some of the big jumps within and into the Rivals100 led by cornerback Nigel Knott, who would have been a new five star were it not for a recent knee injury.
"This release is an odd one for me for many reasons, but it's something I will quickly get used to," said Rivals.com National Recruiting Director Mike Farrell. "A new No. 1, for the fourth time already in this class, and dropping so many five stars down to four, more than we added, is going to be more commonplace moving forward. But there are also some major moves within the Rivals100 and some guys creeping up into five-star range. Keep an eye on this release because I think it's telling in regards to the direction some prospects are headed."
One such prospect is Madison (Miss.) Germantown cornerback Nigel Knott, who emerged as an elite prospect at his position but will miss much of his senior season with an MCL tear.
"This one is a shame because he was a lock for five stars in my opinion," said Farrell. "But anytime a corner has a knee injury like that you have to wait and see because they rely on change of direction so much. Hopefully he recovers quickly and gets back in time for the end of the season or the all-star evaluation. This kid, if he returns healthy, could be special."
Here's a look at all the prospects that jumped more than 30 spots either within or into the Rivals100 and those who dropped more than 20 spots within the Rivals100.
"Fans look at kids sliding 10 or 12 spots and really react strongly, but when you have prospects moving up and down, especially up then you're going to have what we call 'inadvertent' drops," said Farrell. "They just happen. The moves we focus on are those that are outside that range and the range can change from release to release. This time it's 30 up and 20 down."
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"Howard does not show up to a lot of offseason events, but he was at the B2G Elite Camp and absolutely dominated. He is a smooth, sleek route-runner and can run by most cornerbacks with ease. He sets them up, gets open and then catches absolutely everything. Howard was not seen as much as other top California receivers this summer, but he established himself as arguably the top player at that position in the state. When he was at events, he took over." -- National Analyst Adam Gorney
WR
Drake Davis
Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Avademy
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
33
NR
NA
"Davis is a unique athlete and could see his stock continue to rise with a strong senior season. He did not play in 2014, but he obviously did not stop working. He is a big at 6-foot-4 and he has tremendous athleticism and he attacks the ball. He also has quick feet and big hands. He was easily one of the most impressive performers at the LSU camp in July." -- Mid-South Analyst Jason Howell
WR
T.J. Chase
Plant City, Fla.
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
35
84
+49
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"Chase found himself on the same field as other elite prospects often this offseason and always seemed to shine. He was impressive at the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge Presented by Under Armour and the IMG national 7-on-7 championships. He's as smooth a wideout as there is in America and gets open with a devastating change of pace. His impressive size is window dressing to an incredibly well-rounded skill set." -- Cassidy
CB
Jack Jones
Long Beach (Calif.) Poly
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
37
91
+54
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"Jones played wide receiver last season and early in the offseason but found his niche at cornerback and really has emerged as one of the best players at that position this summer. The Long Beach Poly standout has made it his main position and he shined there at the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge and at various events in recent months. Given his history as a receiver, Jones has a knack for understanding what the offensive player is trying to do. And even though he's undersized, Jones can be physical and he's great closing and making a play on the ball." -- Gorney
QB
Feleipe Franks
Crawfordville (Fla.) Wakulla
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
39
94
+55
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"Franks stood out during the 7-on-7 portion of Florida State's camp and showed some improved accuracy to go along with his massively strong arm. Franks has the size of an elite quarterback prospect and has the skill to go with it. As he develops his footwork, he only stands to get better." -- Cassidy
OG
Terrance Davis
Hyatsville (Md.) DeMatha
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
46
122
+76
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"Davis took the best shots from some of the nation's top defensive linemen this offseason and rose to the challenge. While pass blocking, his ability to hold his ground while controlling the movements of his opponent was very impressive. Davis has a great initial punch and did a very good job of adjusting when the defensive linemen went for their second and third moves." -- Mid-Atlantic Analyst Adam Friedman.
DE
Terrell Hall
Washington (D.C.) St. John's College High
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
54
202
+148
"Last season, Hall was a terror coming off the edge and was considered a speed-rushing specialist. After adding about 30 pounds of muscle in the offseason, Hall looks like a completely different player, adding power moves to rush the passer and be able to stand up at the point of attack. He is much more college-ready right now and we fully expect him to have a dominant season and push for that fifth star." -- Friedman
DE
Jeffery Simmons
Macon (Miss.) Noxubee County
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
56
NR
NA
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"Simmons shined at Mississippi State's camp, where he didn't lose a rep during one-on-one drills. His size and quickness off the ball are that of an elite prospect. He has thick legs and long arms that will help him become an elite pass rushed at the FBS level." -- Cassidy
Gorney
DE
Jonathon Cooper
Gahanna (Ohio) Lincoln
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
57
148
+91
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"Cooper bested all others, including several five-stars, to take home the defensive line MVP award at the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge in June. At 6-foot-3 and 230 pounds, he is still undersized for the defensive line, but he is a difference maker who can wreak havoc coming off the edge." -- Midwest Analyst Josh Helmholdt.
WR
Trevon Sidney
La Puente (Calif.) Bishop Amat
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
58
97
+39
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"Maybe no player in California had a better summer than Sidney, who absolutely dominated at the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge and showed he could be the best slot receiver in the state, if not the nation. Sidney did not put up big numbers in his junior season and that will be something that's watched closely this year -- whether he's a 7-on-7 superstar or if he can translate his big plays with pads on as well since that's most important. Sidney is elusive, he has great hands, and the four-star can shake almost any cornerback in one-on-one situations." -- Gorney
DE
Glen Logan
Destrehan, La.
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
67
197
+130
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"Logan not only jumped up several spots and into the Rivals100 but he also switched positions. He has reshaped his body and showed some great athleticism and drive where we felt comfortable moving him from defensive tackle to defensive end. He had a great showing at the LSU camp in July, where he showed an explosive first step, a strong rip move and he went through drills with a purpose. Put it all together and it was clear he had to move up." -- Howell
WR
Kyle Davis
Lawrenceville (Ga.) Archer
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
68
158
+90
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"Davis is one of the most physically impressive prospects in the class, regardless of position, and he spent the summer showing that he is one of the top wide receivers in the country. Earlier in his career, he was thought of more as an athlete, but as his hands have improved so has his outlook at the receiver position." -- Southeast Analyst Woody Wommack.
WR
Binjimen Victor
Coconut Creek, Fla.
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
69
101
+32
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"Victor is as reliable a red-zone threat as there is in the country and runs smooth routes for a prospect of his size. With each impressive performance, he is proving that his skinny build is less and less of a problem. Victor, who boasts sure hands and runs crisp routes, could become something downright scary as he adds muscle in college." -- Cassidy
OG
Michael Onwenu
Detroit (Mich.) Cass Tech
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
83
191
+108
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"Onwenu started his prep career looking destined to be a defensive tackle prospect with his size and skill-set, but he has progressed the most as an offensive guard and dominated from that position throughout the spring and summer. The 6-foot-3, 367-pound Michigan commit is a big body, but he is also very light on his feet. He has a devastating punch and gets immediate extension, but he can also engage and move with defensive linemen." -- Helmholt
OT
Landon Young
Lexington (Ken.) Lafayette
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
91
149
+58
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"Young is the type of prospect that continues to improve every time you see him and once he realizes just how dominating he can be, he could be a special player at the next level. He's already 6-foot-7 and 300 pounds, but he still has the frame to add more muscle, a scary proposition for his future opponents." -- Wommack
DT
Raekwon Davis
Meridian, Miss.
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
94
NR
NA
"Davis is more than just a massive body and he showed that at LSU's camp. He has incredibly quick hands for a massive defensive tackle and is light on bad weight, considering his massive frame. Davis has the look of a run stopper and moves well enough to find himself in the backfield. His upside is unmistakable." -- Cassidy
QB
Shane Buechele
Arlington (Texas) Arlington Lamar
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
98
188
+90
"Buechele went to the Elite 11 Finals and was one of the more impressive performers from beginning to end. He put zip on the ball and showed off the arm strength, but that was not all. He also handled the mental aspects of the competition with ease. His quick decision making and accuracy allowed him to slice up defenses in the 7-on-7 portion and to be one of the most consistent performers throughout the competition." -- Howell
SLIDERS
WR
Elijah Stove
Niceville, Fla.
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
52
29
-23
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"Stove still has some impressive explosiveness and will certainly help the college of his choice, but his routes and hands don't seem to be as developed as they were once thought to be. Stove has some incredible physical ability, but still needs some polishing. He didn't take a massive tumble in the rankings after a better-than-average performance at the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge, but his new ranking better suits his level of play." -- Cassidy
DT
Edwin Alexander
Hammond (La.) St. Thomas Aquinas
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
70
45
-25
"Alexander's conditioning is the main concern. He showed a quick first step and strength at the point of attack, but he has been slowed a little. There is no doubt he has a great skillset to work with, but he was not quite as explosive as we have seen in the past." -- Howell
LB
Breland Brandt
Los Angeles (Calif.) Windward
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
78
38
-40
"Brandt has tremendous size and he moves really well, so he's solid in coverage and can run with pretty much anybody in one-on-one situations. He makes plays and he can get to the sideline to shut down plays as well that get stretched outside. But Brandt still gets caught thinking a little too much instead of being instinctual and at the highest level, he's a half-step slow sometimes because of it. In a few years, with more coaching and more exposure to high-level talent, Brandt could adapt well because he's super smart and picks things up quickly, but he needs that rigorous, competitive environment all the time to reach his best." -- Gorney
DT
Julian Rochester
Powder Springs (Ga.) McEachern
NEW RANK
PREV. RANK
DIFFERENCE
84
56
-26
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"It was a tough summer camp season for Rochester, who struggled at times after adding some weight following an injury in the spring. While he still showed flashes of dominance, it's clear the extra weight didn't help his game. Rochester said he plans to have a dominant senior season, which could help him regain his spot down the line." -- Wommack
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Mike Farrell
National Recruiting Director
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Blair Angulo
West Recruiting Analyst
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Rob Cassidy
Southeast Recruiting Analyst
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Adam Friedman
Mid-Atlantic Recruiting Analyst
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Adam Gorney
West Recruiting Analyst
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Josh Helmholdt
Midwest Recruiting Analyst
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Jason Howell
Mid-South Recruiting Analyst
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Woody Wommack
Southeast Recruiting Analyst
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