SEC Spotlight: Five players that emerged this spring
Mark Pszonak contributed to this report.
Spring football is in the books and many players across Power Five conferences took the next step forward or in some cases their first step towards stardom. This week we look at some of those standouts and we continue with the SEC.
JASHAUN CORBIN - Texas A&M
The skinny: Corbin initially committed to Florida State, but after the coaching change in Tallahassee, he reopened his recruitment. While USC and Arkansas became serious players, and the Seminoles remained in the picture with new coach Willie Taggart, Corbin surprised some by following coach Jimbo Fisher to College Station.
With a deep stable of running backs looking to make their mark this spring, Corbin’s performance helped establish himself as the clear leader at the position. A hamstring tweak caused him to sit out the spring game, but that did not damper Aggies’ fans excitement about his potential this fall.
Farrell’s take: Trayveon Williams is gone and Corbin could be the best replacement possible. He has good size but he can also catch the ball out of the backfield and he’s dynamic when he has the ball in his hands. A big Florida pickup for Texas A&M, Fisher will know how to use him and he could be the next star running back for the Aggies.
CAMERON LATU - Alabama
The skinny: Latu trimmed his list of top programs down to Alabama, USC, Nebraska, Utah and Washington before committing to the Tide in early August. With Irv Smith making the move to the NFL, tight end was one of the few positions at Alabama where there were a few question marks coming into the spring. Latu, who may also be used as an H-Back, emerged as an extremely pleasant surprise, who should give the Tide an explosive pass catching weapon. Making the move from linebacker, he is still learning the position, and may start the season behind Miller Forristall, but look for him to see increased playing time as he picks up the offense.
Farrell’s take: Latu was a very athletic defensive end coming out of high school who could also play linebacker or move to offense if needed. Now he’s a key offensive player for Alabama and could be the downfield threat to replace Smith for Nick Saban. We had him as a four-star and No. 113 in the country for a reason because he’s a very good athlete and there’s no reason for us to think he won’t be successful at tight end.
ELIJAH MOORE - Ole Miss
The skinny: Moore initially committed to Georgia during the summer leading up to his senior season, but then pulled off a mild surprise by flipping to Ole Miss during the early period Signing Day. Replacing A.J. Brown and D.K. Metcalf will not be a simple task for the Rebels, but Moore looks prepared to take his game to the next level. After showing flashes during the 2018 season, he continued to impress during the spring, including an eight-reception, 79-yard performance in the Grove Bowl.
Farrell’s take: Moore is the hope at wide receiver for Ole Miss as the Rebels lose two key players. He’s not as big or filled out as either player but he is very fast and sudden and has proven reliable. Speed was his calling card out of high school and he had excellent ball skills so I expect him to be the next one at Ole Miss.
KYLE PITTS - Florida
After seeing action in three games as a true freshman last season, Pitts has Gators’ fans excited about his potential for the future. And that future may be sooner than later, as his wide receiver skillset in a tight ends body should make him a popular target for quarterback Feleipe Franks this season.
Farrell’s take: Pitts was never a long tight end but he was always tough to match up with as a flex guy as he was athletic and ran good routes. He had good hands and fought for the ball well and I think he can be a great weapon in the Florida offense. Watch out for his contribution next season.
DIVAAD WILSON - Georgia
The skinny: Wilson initially committed to Florida, but when the Gators had a coaching change, he decided to reopen his recruitment. After taking official visits to Georgia, Louisville, UCF, Alabama and South Carolina, he found a new home in Athens.
This is the second year in a row that Wilson has garnered a great deal of buzz during the spring. Last year that buzz abruptly ended after he tore his ACL during the first padded practice of the summer, but now healthy he once again looks poised and ready to make a big impact for the Bulldogs this fall.
Farrell’s take: Wilson was a four-star corner with good size and strength coming out of South Florida who was coveted by many. He liked to hit and was good close to the line of scrimmage and his coverage skills were solid. We saw him as a guy who could stay at corner or move to safety because of his versatility and I think he makes a big impact for Georgia next year.