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Yep, it’s that time again. With National Signing Day behind us there is no time like the present to immediately spin things forward and look at the next crop of promising recruits. If you follow recruiting, you probably recognize some of these names. But if you don’t, it is these guys who will drive the top-end of the recruiting discussion through both 2019 Signing Days.
Before we begin: a strong caveat to all this is in order. Thanks to the the recruiting cycle works, there is probably a player who is nowhere near this list who will rocket out of nowhere to be one of the best players in the 2019 class. Take 2017’s best recruit, Jaelan Phillips, for instance. He was the 375th-ranked player in the country 16 months before Signing Day. He finished No. 1.
He’s soared up the rankings over the last year or so, after Washington discovered him in 2015, when the Composite rated him the country’s No. 375 recruit. The rest of the Pac-12 quickly caught up, so did the rest of the country, and he was eventually named U.S. Army All-American Bowl Defensive Player of the Year.
Jadon Haselwood (6’3, 180 pounds, Ellenwood, Georgia), DE
Nolan Smith (6’3, 223 pounds, Savannah, Georgia), WR
Dominick Blaylock (6’0, 175 pounds, Marietta, Georgia)
We’re gonna group these guys together because they’re all top-10 players who are originally from Georgia — although Smith plays at IMG Academy in Florida currently — and also committed to UGA’s 2019 class. Kirby Smart has already been working on making the Dawgs into a recruiting death star, and the 2018 class is already elite. This trio happen to be the only players in the current 247Sports Composite top-10 verbally committed, and they all are slated to stay home as of right now. That continues to be the most important subplot to what UGA is doing on the recruiting trail: Getting the best players in the Peach State to come to Athens.
Haselwood may not have breathtaking speed, but his size and catch radius are impressive. With some weight on him in a college strength program he’ll be quite the vertical threat because it’ll be so tough to beat him on a well-thrown 50-50 ball. That’s provided he even stays on offense. He played safety in high school, and reminds me of LSU’s Jacoby Stevens where that’s concerned.
Blaylock is shifty/quick twitch/tough to tackle/whatever adjective you want for short area quickness. He’s just gonna make dudes miss with the ball in his hands, plain and simple.
He can return kicks, too.
Smith is real hard to block because of his initial burst. He’s a DE, but it wouldn’t be shocking for him to move outside to linebacker in college as he’s much more of a rush end on tape.
Other names to look out for
The size alone on four-star QB
Grant Gunnell (6’6’, 212 pounds, Houston, Texas) should have pretty much everyone salivating over the Texas A&M verbal’s prospects at the next level.
Also for proof of concept, this was Gunnell the summer after his sophomore season.
This is a throw that not a lot of players in the 2019 class can make. This isn’t exactly a great QB class anyway, and the original best player in it, J.T. Daniels, re-classified to 2018 and enrolled a year early at USC. There is no “slam dunk” QB name in this class like Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence and Georgia’s Justin Fields were this year, but Gunnell is a QB to keep an eye on.
Also in the backfield, RB
Trey Sanders (5’11, 216 pounds, Port St. Joe, Florida) rolls through defenses as a bigger back with exceptional quickness. If you’re a linebacker trying to tackle this dude in space, well, good luck to you.
Sanders has already de-committed from Alabama, but still named the Tide his leader two days later. The Tide might be able to pull off the rare de-commit/re-commit double play for Sanders before all is said and done next February.
In the trenches, OT
Kenyon Green (6’5’, 315 pounds, Humble, Texas) stands out because of his size. It’s not often that an offensive lineman gets on campus with the size and athleticism to play immediately. Green can do that, and he hasn’t even played his senior season yet. The thing about his size to note is the weight displacement. His lower body is massive.
Players at his size can sometimes get by on just raw mass in high school, so as he transitions he’ll have to make sure he puts weight on in the right places in college. But the tools and frame are there for Green to be special.
On the other side of the ball
Nakobe Dean (6’0’, 215 pounds, Horn Lake, MS) is a listed inside linebacker with outside linebacker sensibilities. Meaning, he’s got the closing speed to chase plays down from behind and that makes him tough to block from pulling linemen and other OLs at the second level because it can be difficult to get a good angle on him.
When you look at DBs in high school, there are things that often jump off the page like Recovery speed, fluidity in hips, backpedal skill and vertical leap to name a few. One of the isn’t usually power. Then you take a look at FSU verbal commit CB
Akeem Dent (6’0’, 170 pounds, Palm Beach, FL) and you see the absolute boom he brings to receivers.
Receivers can usually run through a high school defensive back. Yards after the catch abruptly stop when you’re in heat seeking distance of this long-armed CB. The five-star has already decommitted from Miami through his recruiting process. He’s well-versed in the rivalry with FSU.
Source : http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/msn/2019-recruits-to-know-by-position-group-including-uga’s-big-3/ar-BBJ2xyY1243