With senior seasons completed, the vast majority of national all star games
behind us, it's just about time to lock down the Scout rankings for the Class of
2011. Which players have helped themselves the most over the last month as we
count down to signing day on February 2nd?
Let's take a look at five of the biggest movers.
S - Karlos Williams (6-2/210)
(Ridge Community) Davenport, Fla.
Current Ranking: 4-Star, No. 3 Safety
Committed to Florida State
It's easy to take one look at Karlos Williams and say "outside
linebacker." He's a huge safety, but he's also one of those players I like
to call the exception to the rule. Great defenses are built with exceptions.
Most players built like Williams end up playing linebacker on the college level,
unless they can play the safety position like Karlos Williams. He is an
exceptional athlete that covers an inordinate amount of ground with a long easy
stride. He is a physical presence in the defensive backfield and is a threat to
score if he gets his hands on an interception. Going into the all-star games, it
was thought that Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix had a strangle hold on the No. 1 safety spot, but Clinton-Dix's
grip got a little looser with every play that Williams made through the week at
the Under Armour All-American Bowl.
DE - Anthony Chickillo (6-4/235)
(Alonso) Tampa, Fla.
Current Ranking: 4-Star, No. 16 Defensive End
Committed to Miami
Sharing the field with Scout's No. 1 player overall and fellow defensive end
Jadeveon Clowney (6-5/245) can be a daunting task. Chickillo not only managed to
make a name for himself, he outshined Scout's No. 1 throughout the course of the
week at the Under Armour Bowl practices. While not the athlete that Clowney is,
and let's be fair, maybe only Julius Peppers is, Chickillo was more refined and
advanced in his techniques and pass rushing. One sequence at practice
illustrated the difference between where the two players currently are when they
faced Scout's No. 1 offensive tackle prospect Cyrus Kouandjio on consecutive plays. Clowney was unable to get off a block of
Kouandjio, while Chickillo got his hands on Kouandjio and with a quick push/pull
move, slung him to the ground and made it easily to the quarterback.
DT - Delvon Simmons (6-5/275)
(McKeesport Area) McKeesport, Pa.
Current Ranking: 4-Star, No. 19 Defensive Tackle
Considering Florida, Iowa, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Texas Tech, and USC
In a season that has a lack of tall, passing lane cloggers at the defensive
tackle position, Simmons literally stands out in a crowd at 6-5+. Having played
defensive end and offensive line for much of his high school career, he took to
playing the defensive tackle position at the Army All-American Bowl naturally.
He plays with good pad level and has gotten better as he's matured at using his
hands to keep defenders off of him. His trademark motor and quick first step
were evident all week in San Antonio.
OT - Bobby Hart (6-5/300)
(St. Thomas Aquinas) Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
Current Ranking: 4-Star, No. 9 Offensive Tackle
Committed to Florida State
The offensive tackle position was in good hands at Under Armour with five of
Scout's top six tackles suited up in Orlando. While Bobby Hart didn't enter the
week in that same group, he finished the week smack in the middle of it. Hart
has incredibly light feet for a player of his size. Relatively new to the game,
Hart's athleticism was never in doubt, but how he'd rise or shrink to the
challenge of facing the nation's best players was a question going into the
week. Consider it answered. Hart stepped up to the challenge and his potential
turned into production.
DE - Nathan Hughes (6-5/257)
(Klein Oak) Spring, Texas
Current Ranking: 4-Star, No. 15 Defensive End
Committed to Oklahoma
Hughes battled injuries this year and was never able to fully show what he was
able to do when healthy. When healthy, he turned into my pick for the player
most likely to be in the NFL from the Under Armour game. He has the size that
might make him a defensive tackle one day, but he has the look of a 290 pound
1st round defensive end when he's finished at Oklahoma. His first step and
acceleration are scary fast. He plays with leverage that let's him bull rush any
offensive tackle that he doesn't want to rush right by, and he is strong enough
to hold down two blockers and free up the linebackers behind him. His
versatility make him an ideal defensive lineman that could line up at nearly any
position and dominate.