Making Moves - Scout 300

George Farmer

With the Class of 2011 having been ranked and re-ranked for over a year at Scout.com, there's not a tsunami of change that sweeps the nation, but there are still dozens of players moving up, down, in and out of the Scout 300.

See the complete Scout 300 rankings

Scout first released its Class of 2011 rankings over a year ago in September of 2009, and there have been some major updates along the way, but now it's more of fine tuning as the players now begin to wrap up their senior seasons.

Scout's recruiting managers met last week to discuss midseason player updates, and while there are some tight races for the No. 1 spot at several positions, it was a good week for the incumbents. None of the spots changed hands, but there are some tight races that could still see change at the top after the all-star games in January.

The three tightest races for No. 1 are at quarterback, wide receiver, and defensive tackle.

First is the quarterback position. Ohio State commitment Braxton Miller (6-2/195) of Huber Heights, Ohio has held on to the top spot while Florida commitment Jeff Driskel (6-4/225) of Oviedo, Fla. keeps closing the gap. It was a split decision amongst the Scout managers, but Miller held on for the time being.

Miller has shown resilience battling through an injury, and Driskel is turning potential into production as both quarterbacks are elevating teams that are less than stacked with talent.

Defensive tackle Tim Jernigan (6-2/275) of Lake City, Fla. is a disruptive force in the middle of the defensive line. He is ranked the No. 2 prospect in the country regardless of position, but he's getting a strong challenge from the left coast from a different type of player in Viliami Moala (6-3/340) of Sacremento, Calif. Moala is the rare 3-4 nose guard that can not only occupy double teams, but he can get good penetration and chase plays down from behind.

It's almost a misnomer to call Jernigan No. 1 and Moala No. 2. To get them both to the top spot, it makes sense to call Jernigan the top tackle and Moala the top nose guard.

If there seems to be a recurring theme amongst the top players in the country being from Florida, that's no accident as the Sunshine State is loaded this year, and that debate extends to the wide receiver position as Trey Metoyer (6-2/185) of Whitehouse, Texas is holding on to the No. 1 spot over a strong push by Sammy Watkins (6-1/180) of Fort Myers, Fla.

The discussion between the two hasn't gotten quite as passionate as the Robert Woods / Kyle Prater discussion from the Class of 2010, but like last year, this one probably will get decided at the All-Star games.

Looking at the Scout 300 as a whole, there were several changes that affect the star ratings of prospects. What goes up must come down, and for every player that moves into the 4-Star and 5-Star range, another must move out. Here is a look at the players that will draw the most scrutiny over in the current Scout 300, the movers.

First, let's take a look at the 5-Stars, or the Top 50 prospects in the country regardless of position. Being a 5-Star on Scout.com is a testament to potential for the next level, including the ability to make it to school. Over the last two years, 99 out of 100 Scout.com 5-Star prep athletes have qualified for college right out of high school.

5-Stars

Who's Up?

WR George Farmer (6-3/210), Gardena, Calif. 
Considering: USC, Alabama, Florida, Miami, Oregon
"For Farmer, it's never been a question about talent. He's easily one of the most physically talented players in the West, if not the country. It's a matter of consistency, bringing the same effort game in and game out. It's not fair to compare him to his former Serra teammate, Robert Woods (Scout's No. 1 receiver for the Class of 2010), who was as gifted a player as I've ever seen, but when it came to effort and consistency, Woods brought it all the time.  Farmer has had to improve on that, and to his credit, he's done that his senior year." - Brandon Huffman, West Recruiting Manager

  DE Aaron Lynch (6-6/265), Cape Coral, Fla.
Considering: Florida, Florida State, and Miami
"Lynch has put it all together this season at defensive end. He is playing nearly 20 pounds heavier this season; he is still very explosive off the ball, and he is much more active with his hands. He is being double-teamed on a regular basis, but he is chasing the ball down and pressuring the quarterback often. He has grown into a complete defense end as a senior." - Chad Simmons, South Recruiting Manager

DE Ishaq Williams (6-5/225), Brooklyn, N.Y.
Considering: Alabama, Notre Dame, Penn State, Rutgers among others
"Still a defensive end, but a different player than Lynch, Williams has the skill set to star as an outside linebacker in a 3-4 or a rush end in a 4-3. He has tremendous athleticism, and his intensity on the field matches his physical ability." - Scott Kennedy, Director of Scouting

Who's Down?

QB Christian LeMay (6-2/190), Matthews, N.C.
Committed to Georgia
"LeMay decided to sit out his full senior season after an off the field incident that occurred late in the summer. He still was chosen to play in the Under Armour All-America game and Offense-Defense All-American Bowl, and he has decided to play in the O-D game in Myrtle Beach. He will still have a chance to get back into the top 50 and to earn a fifth star back." 
- Chad Simmons, South Recruiting Manager

OLB Colt Lyerla (6-5/225), Hillsboro, Ore.
Considering: Oregon, Oregon State, USC, UCLA among others
"After going to Oregon and seeing Lyerla play this fall, the biggest question is- where does he play? He's a phenomenal athlete, but he's somewhat a jack-of-all-trades, master of none. Size-wise, he looks like a defensive end, but he played linebacker. Offensively, he should be a big receiver, but he played running back. He's also had some off-the-field concerns- getting suspended for a game, and academically, he needs to be focused there." - Brandon Huffman, West Recruiting Manager

TE Ben Koyack (6-5/230), Oil City, Pa.
Committed to Notre Dame
"Koyack was one of the first players rated on Scout, and it's not that he's done anything to hurt himself, it's just the emergence of so many talented players, especially tight ends, around the country have moved him down the list. He's got a terrific frame, runs good routes, blocks hard, he just lacks some of the raw explosiveness of tight ends such as Nick O'Leary or Jay Rome, or raw size like Austin Sefarian-Jenkins." - Scott Kennedy, Director of Scouting

Scout 300

Who's In?


OLB Kris Frost (6-3/210), Matthews, N.C.
Considering: Auburn and Michigan among others
"Frost has continued to play at a high level for the reigning state champs in North Carolina. He still makes plays on both sides of the ball, and he has shown great leadership on the field from day one. His versatility is one thing that sticks out and although he is being recruited as an athlete by many schools, Scout projects him as an outside linebacker. He plays in space well; he can run with running back and tight ends, and he can also rush the quarterback off the edge." - Chad Simmons, South Recruiting Manager

DE Koa Ka'ai (6-4/25), Honolulu, Hawaii
Considering: Nebraska, Oregon, and Stanford among others
"He's a brute with a great burst off the ball, good size and a coachable nature. Coming from Hawaii, he's been somewhat under the radar, but as his film has made the rounds, I see a guy who has the potential to play early." - Brandon Huffman, West Recruiting Manager

DE Dan Tapko (6-5/235), Kansas City, Mo.
Committed to Oklahoma
"Tapko is a great athlete. To be perfectly honest, I think we just had him under-valued all year and finally got it right. A kid with his frame, flexibility and athleticism is rare, and he excels on both sides of the ball. He could make an early impact for Oklahoma." Allen Trieu, Midwest Recruiting Manager 

S Glen Faulkner (6-2/185), East St. Louis, Ill.
Committed to Kentucky
"I got to see Faulkner earlier this year at the Warren Central Classic and it confirmed what I had heard and seen on tape; he is aggressive and has excellent ball skills. What impressed me most was how versatile he was. He can play in the box and make plays against the run, cover man to man, play deep zone; he could do it all. The one thing he does is get over-aggressive at times, but that can be coached." Allen Trieu, Midwest Recruiting Manager 

OLB Jake Keefer (6-4/200), Baldwin, Wis.
Committed to Wisconsin
"Keefer is a guy who we though didn't make the plays as a junior that his physical ability might suggest he should be making. He had to earn it with us and he did this year. He had a dominating senior year to go along with the speed and attacking style of play we saw as a junior. For a kid 6'3 to be running the way he runs on tape is impressive." - Allen Trieu, Midwest Recruiting Manager 

Who's Out?

MLB Kent Turene (6-3/245), Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.
Committed to USC
"Turene is a strong inside linebacker that plays down hill, but he is a little limited on the second level of defense. He is a bulky backer that thrives in attacking the ball carrier head on, but he struggles in space and when he has to shed a blocker to get to the ball. He is not a sideline to sideline linebacker and should be a guy that excels against the run on the next level." -
Chad Simmons, South Recruiting Manager 

DE Sterling Bailey (6-4/230), Gainesville, Ga.
Committed to Georgia
"Bailey worked himself into good shape for his senior year, and he has played well at times. But he is not as strong as the point of attack as he should be, and he needs to play with that intensity level high at all times. He has a great frame, he is athletic, and he will be one Scout watches closely in San Antonio the week of the U.S. Army All-American game to see if he belongs in the final Scout 300."  -
Chad Simmons, South Recruiting Manager

WR A.J. Jordan (6-3/170), Trotwood, Ohio
Committed to Wisconsin
Jordan has actually had a good year; he just got edged out a little by some of the newcomers to the Scout 300. I like his frame, and he's a great deep threat, but in watching full games, we, as a staff, did not see consistency underneath. He's a raw athlete. He has tools and upside, but he needs time and coaching. I think he'll get that at Wisconsin and him sliding out of the 300 was in no way a swipe at his talent or potential." - Allen Trieu, Midwest Recruiting Manager

TE Ray Hamilton (6-5/230), Strongsville, Ohio
Committed to Iowa
"Hamilton is a kid who flashes and makes big plays, but he's another we did not see consistency from. We did not see him playing full throttle all the time, and the inconsistency with effort allowed a couple other guys to jump ahead of him and move him just outside the Scout 300." Allen Trieu, Midwest Recruiting Manager

RB Brendon Bigelow (5-10/180), Fresno, Calif.
Committed to Washington
"When healthy, there isn't a better all-around running back in the West than Bigelow. But that's where all the questions begin. Bigelow had his junior year end because of a knee injury, and then when rushing his rehab, reinjured it and has missed his entire senior season. Injure a knee with a tear once, and it's a concern. Re-injure the same knee then not play an entire season, then it's a huge concern. With the way knees rehab now, he could be good to go in no time. But to come all the way back, by the time he returns, it could be a full three years since he last touched a football. Hard to project a slashing, fast, speedster when his most valuable weapon, his speed, is going to be affected by two serious injuries to a knee."  - Brandon Huffman, West Recruiting Manager

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