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Three-Point Stance: ACC studs; schools luring transfers; player comparisons

Rivals National Columnist Mike Farrell is here with a look at 10 ACC players he’s excited to see next season based on the spring, the five schools that seem to be mentioned with every transfer portal player and a few commits in the 2022 class that remind him of recent college players.


RIVALS TURNS 20: The top No. 1 classes in our history | Ranking the No. 1 prospects

CLASS OF 2022 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Position | Team | State

CLASS OF 2023 RANKINGS: Rivals100

RIVALS TRANSFER TRACKER: Stories/coverage | Message board

RIVALS CAMP SERIES: Info/coverage on 2021 camp series


1. Ten ACC players I'm excited to see this season. 

Charleston Rambo
Charleston Rambo (AP Images)

I continue my look at players I’m excited to see next season based on their spring performance. Moving on to the ACC.

1. WR Charleston Rambo, Miami Rambo will immediately be WR1 for Miami and will have a massive impact on the offense, no matter who the quarterback is.

2. WR Josh Downs, North Carolina Worried about UNC replacing so many offensive pieces? Don’t be. Downs is going to be a star.

3. WR Jaelen Gill, Boston College Gill had a solid impact last season but watch how he works with Phil Jurkovec this year as opponents focus on Zay Flowers.

4. WR Joseph Ngata, Clemson The former-five star from California should be healthy this season and ready to break out, along with a very deep receiver room.

5. DE Yaya Diabi, Louisville You’d think it would be an offensive player for Louisville, but it’s not. This kid is ready to dominate with his length.

6. DT Jordan Williams, Virginia Tech Williams has a chance to be an amazing pocket crusher for the Hokies.

7. DT CJ Clark, NC State Clark isn’t the run-stuffer that Alim McNeil was, but he could be a better pass rusher.

8. QB Gunnar Holmberg, Duke Duke isn’t on anyone’s radar as a contender, but we know what David Cutcliffe can do with quarterbacks.

9. QB Jeff Sims, Georgia Tech Sims showed signs last year as a true freshman and should take the next step with a full spring under his belt.

10. TE Lucas Krull, Pitt He’s a massive tight end who left Florida because the Gators had a guy named Kyle Pitts. He could be a breakout ACC tight end.


2. Five schools transfers are targeting. 

Mel Tucker
Mel Tucker (AP Images)

1. Michigan State Tuck Coming is the battle cry for Michigan State fans and especially when someone hits the portal. Mel Tucker has added more help than anyone this cycle through the portal and it will be interesting to see if it works out.

2. UCF The Gus Bus is rolling at UCF and the Knights can make an argument for helping themselves as much as anyone – and they aren’t done. Tyreke Johnson and others are still targets. Gus Malzahn likes the portal.

3. Auburn Adding defensive secondary help as well as some defensive line help will make this defense click as Bryan Harsin takes care of the offense.

4. Florida State The Seminoles need a roster overhaul and a change of culture and many of their portal additions provide that. And, interestingly enough, some of the guys they passed on are part of that culture goal as well.

5. USC I’m throwing the Trojans in here because they always seemed to get mentioned with players, especially those from Texas. The connections to that state are helping.


3. Comparing prospects to current college players. 

Dani Dennis-Sutton
Dani Dennis-Sutton (Rivals)

And finally after watching some of the highlights of top players participating in our camp series, a few of them reminded me of current college players.

DE Dani Dennis-Sutton He reminds me a bit of Zach Harrison from Ohio State on film at the same stage. He's raw, but he has so many gifts.

OT Julian Armella Armella has been compared to a few different players by me but after watching him again he could be a Jackson Carman type. Could play inside or outside at NFL level.

OT Kam Dewberry I’m still thinking Jedrick Wills from Alabama here, but I’m not sure if he has the same feet. But he’s a guard body who can play tackle.

ATH Ken Talley I’m not sure if he can be as good as Nolan Smith from Georgia or if he’ll be a hybrid, but he has similar explosion.

RB Branson Robinson I have to go Trent Richardson here. When I see a running back that muscled up I have to go back to the Alabama five-star. But as for recent college players, how about Samaje Perine from Oklahoma?

WR Brandon Inniss He’s a dynamic receiver who is still growing and is electric in and out of his breaks but he’s not an easy comparison, especially as a 2023. How about a shorter Jerry Jeudy?

LB CJ Hicks He’s a freaky, quick-twitch athlete who can cover with the best of them as a linebacker prospect. I’m going Alabama again with Christian Harris.