Scout 300 for 2015
Texas has the most prospect in the just-release class of 2015 Scout 300 rankings, the southeast has the most players, more running backs are ranked than any other position and there are 36 states and the District of Columbia represented.
In addition, 33 members of the Scout 300 are already committed to schools, with the Alabama Crimson Tide leading the way with four and the Texas Longhorns sitting with three. The highest-rated committed player is Jacksonville (Fla.) Trinity Christian Academy cornerback Kevin Toliver, who is 6-foot-2, 180 pounds. He pledged to LSU and is the No. 5 player in the class.
The 42 running backs in the Scout 300 are the most of any position. There are 37 receivers, 33 defensive ends and 27 quarterbacks. The lone center is Lewisville (Tex.) Hebron High’s Zach Rogers.
Running back: 42
Defensive end: 33
Offensive tackle: 28
Outside linebacker: 25
Defensive tackle: 18
Offensive guard: 15
Tight ends: 11
Middle linebacker: 10
“I think the great thing about the state of Florida is there is no clearly defined No. 1 recruit in the 2015 class,” said national recruiting analyst Jamie Newberg, who is based on Florida. “Honestly, you can make a case for a half a dozen or so players. Right now you have an outstanding defensive back like Kevin Toliver as our No. 1 guy. He's a talented and athletic corner with outstanding size.”
However, sorting out the depth of Florida’s class, which includes 33 players in the Scout 300, is not an easy endeavor.
“Following (Toliver) is a monster at offensive tackle in Martez Ivey (Apopka, Fla.),” Newberg said. “Then, you have guys like defensive end CeCe Jefferson (Glen St. Mary, Fla./ Baker County), wide receiver George Campbell (Tarpon Springs, Fla./East Lake) and safety/wide receiver Shawn Burgess-Becker (Coconut Creek, Fla./Monarch).
“And at the end of the day it could be a guy like defensive end Byron Cowart (Seffner, Fla./Armwood) that emerges as the top prospect from the Sunshine State. He's sitting at No. 8 right now. The bottom line is that the elite players from Florida are all very similar in terms of their outstanding upside."
Florida has a lot of talent, but so does neighboring Georgia, which has 24 prospects. The class is also deep on the defensive line as 13 defensive end prospects are in the Scout 300 hail from the Southeast Region.
North Carolina: 10
South Carolina: 5
“The defensive line is very strong at the top in this class,” said national recruiting analyst Chad Simmons, who covers the Southeast. “Two defensive tackles (Darius Payne and Trenton Thompson) were named five-stars by Scout on Monday and they lead the way at this position.
“Not far behind that duo are Albert Huggins, T.D. Moton, and Shy Tuttle. All are Scout 100 prospects and all are strong with good mobility. Huggins is a guy quick and athletic enough to play some defensive end, too.”
There is also plenty of talent at other positions -- 16 running backs, 13 receivers, 10 cornerbacks and seven quarterbacks from the Southeast on the list – but Simmons said the defensive line is too deep to overlook.
“With the big guys in the middle, you have speed on the edge,” Simmons said. ”CeCe Jefferson is a five-star end and Scout also named 14 others at this position as four-stars. It is a very deep unit and South Carolina commitment Shameik Blackshear and Alabama commitment Mekhi Brown are knocking on that five-star door. You have a mix of true ends and hybrids in this group and it not only deep, but very strong in this class.
|Blackshear is committed to South Carolina|
“You see different positions stronger each year and when talking the best of the best in 2015, the defensive line group at the top is as good as it gets.”
The bulk of high-end talent is in the southern portion of the region. Thirty-six players from the region are in the Scout 300, and 22 of them come from Maryland (10), Virginia (10) and Washington, D.C. (2), but of the group there is a premium on two key positions on the field.
There are seven cornerback and six offensive tackles on the list.
New Jersey: 4
District of Columbia: 2
New York: 2
West Virginia: 1
“At this point, the 2015 class is about projection,” East Coast recruiting analyst Brian Dohn said. “One of the neat things about this time of year is watching how prospects grow and develop. Quarterback Brandon Wimbush (St. Peter’s Prep of Jersey City, N.J.) is one of those guys. He has a big arm and can throw the 15-yard out as well as the swing pass, but he doesn’t have a lot of experience. He made the list (No. 236 overall) because of his performance at camps and 7-on-7s, and his skill set, but he needs to take the next step and show it on the field.”
One of the intriguing prospects in the East is Morgantown (W.V.) High tight end Stone Wolfley, who is the No. 9 tight end in the nation and the No. 276 prospect overall.
Virginia dominates the top part of the region with Manassas (Va.) Stonewall Jackson five-star defensive tackle Tim Settle, the nation’s top prospect, Richmond (Va.) St. Christopher’s School five-star outside linebacker prospect Ricky DeBerry and Chesapeake (Va.) Oscar Smith four-star defensive end Josh Sweat, who is the No. 29 prospect in the country.
|Settle is nation's No. 1 player|
"(Settle) has great size, strength and athleticism,” said regional recruiting analyst Michael Clark, who covers Virginia. "He is also student of the game who is always working to get better. He has a huge upside and the potential to be a superstar in college."
Don’t mess with Texas …especially when it comes to recruiting talent in the 2015 class.
The Lonestar State has more prospects in the Scout 300 than any other state. Of the 52 prospects from the region on the list, 45 are from Texas. The next closest state is California, which has 40.
In fact, Texas has more members in the Scout 300 than the East (36) and the Midwest (43), and it also has three of the top seven players in the nation.
"For the first time Scout, has stretched its pre-junior season rankings out to a Top 300 and the Midlands checks in with a solid 52 prospects on the list," said national recruiting analyst Greg Powers, who covers the Midlands. "Many players on the list are already being highly recruited. Forty-nine of the 52 are already reporting BCS-level offers."
Mesquite Ralph H. Poteet High outside linebacker Malik Jefferson is No. 2 overall, Gladewater High defensive tackle Daylong Mack is No. 3 overall and Plano West Senior High running back Sotonye Jamabo, who is the nation’s top running back, is the No. 7 prospect.
|Jamabo is the No. 1 running back|
The top end of the Midlands has plenty of talent at the skills positions. There are 10 running backs, seven receivers and five quarterbacks on the list. Also, Texas has eight commits in the 2015 class already, and three – Keller High offensive guard Maea Teuhema, Buda Jack C. Hayes High offensive tackle Connor Lanfear and Corpus Christi Flour Bluff High cornerback Jalen Campbell -- are in the Scout 300.
The top talent in the region is balanced as eight states are represented in the Scout 300, but the strength is at running back, outside linebacker and defensive end. There are nine running backs, six outside linebackers and five defensive ends among the 43 players rated four and five starts.
“Of the top five guys in the Midwest, two are running backs, Damien Harris and L.J. Scott, and two are defensive ends, Terry Beckner and Jashon Cornell,” said national recruiting analyst Allen Trieu, who manages the region. “Those two positions are strong overall this year. The Midwest always has big, strong offensive linemen and there is another good crop this year, led by Seymour (Wisc.) High's Jon Dietzen.”
Dietzen is rated the No. 9 offensive tackle in the class, and No. 92 overall.
Harris, from Brea (Kent.) Madison Southern, is the No. 2 running back in the country and on the cusp of earning a fifth star at No. 22 (the top 20 are five stars). Scott, from Hubbard (Ohio) High, is the No. 3 running back nationally and No. 34 overall.
|Beneventi is the region's top QB|
The Midwest is also home to three of the top nine quarterbacks in Lisle (Ill.) Benet Academy’s Jack Beneventi (No. 4), Lexington (Kent.) Catholic High’s Reese Ryan (No. 8) and Princeton (Kent.) Caldwell County High’s Elijah Sindelar (No. 9).
Talent, talent and more talent, especially at the top end of the class, make the West Region’s 2015 class one of best since rankings were introduced.
Everyone focuses on California, and for good reason since 40 of the 61 prospects in the Scout 300 are from the Golden State. However, the talent is spread across the region as even Idaho and New Mexico are represented.
New Mexico: 1
“I think the most noticeable thing to me out West is just how wide the net has been cast in the Scout 300,” said national recruiting analyst Brandon Huffman, who covers the West Region. “ Sure, California dominates the Scout 300 from the region, but nine states in the West have a prospect in the Scout 300.
“After a couple of down years, Washington has six players while Hawaii has four. New Mexico and Idaho don’t necessarily produce a ton of elite prospects, but the nation’s top offensive guard comes from Idaho (Tristen Hoge) and Zach Gentry is the first four-star quarterback to come from New Mexico since Landry Jones.”
No region has more quarterback depth than the West as nine of them, one-third of the total in the Scout 300, made the list and two are rated with five stars.
Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure Highs’ Ricky Town, an Alabama commit, is the top quarterback and No. 8 player overall, and Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco Prep's Josh Rosen is the No. 2 quarterback and 14th overall prospect.
|Rosen i Nation's No. 2 QB|
There are also 10 receivers, including three of the top five. Scottsdale (Ariz.) Saguaro High’s Christian Kirk is the No. 2 receiver (No. 36 overall), Mission Hills (Calif.) Bishop Alemany High’s Desean Holmes is No. 3 (No. 58) and Diamond Bar (Calif.) High’s Cordell Broadus is No. 5 (No. 64).
“It's not just the top end talent that is strong either,” said national recruiting analyst Greg Biggins, who covers the West. “There is great depth at multiple positions, especially the skill positions, highlighted by the quarterbacks and defensive backs. There is still two years left to go before any of the players can sign but the class has a chance to be the strongest the West has produced in the last decade."