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February 18, 2014

Rivers tops big movers in updated Rivals250

Class of 2015: Rivals100 | Rivals250

With the release of our second Rivals250 presented by Under Armour for the class of 2015 prior to the Rivals Camp Series, we see plenty of dramatic movement as we get more of an in-depth handle on this class. This release is a combination of in-person evaluation, continued film review and discovery.

Here are breakdowns of some of the prospects who made the biggest jumps up our latest rankings.

CLASS OF 2015 RIVALS250 BIG RISERS
DE Chauncey Rivers, Stone Mountain (Ga.) Stephenson (NR to No. 107)
"Rivers was one of the most impressive defensive linemen at the Under Armour Combine and continues to show out at every marquee event he attends. The one knock on him is size, but with his quickness off the ball and the fact that he's now 6-foot-2 should quell those concerns. I think heading into the upcoming camp season, Rivers stock will only continue to rise." - Woody Wommack, Rivals.com Southeast Recruiting Analyst
OG Lester Cotton, Tuscaloosa (Ala.) Tuscaloosa Central (up 109 to No. 112)
"Cotton has great size and quick feet for a big man and he showed us at the Under Armour Combine that he has a nasty streak as well. He's a pure road grader at this stage with natural leverage and a very powerful lower body. He will be a monster guard at the next level. He just has to watch his weight and make sure he doesn't add bad pounds." - Mike Farrell, Rivals.com National Recruiting Director
WR Miles Boykin, New Lenox (Ill.) Providence Catholic (up 124 to No. 114)
"Boykin is a huge receiver who makes you immediately think tight end -- that is until you see him in action and the way he moves. He's a very fluid route runner, has good burst and he uses his size well. He's tough to check off the line or misdirect because he's so big and he was a load for smaller cornerbacks to try to handle at the Under Armour Combine." - Farrell
RB Bradrick Shaw, Hoover, Ala., (up 51 to No. 128)
"Shaw has everything you want in a back in terms of size, speed and athleticism. For a while it looked as if he might be more of an all-purpose type guy, but he continues to get bigger, stronger and faster." - Wommack

CB Isaiah Langley, Pleasanton (Calif.) Foothill (up 73 to No. 129)
"Langley looked good at the Army National Combine and has quickly been landing offers from national programs. He has tremendous athleticism even if he's still learning the position and because he can still be molded into a top player, it's going to be interesting to see how he progresses. A lot of people say Langley is the next big thing out of the Bay Area and I believe it after watching his highlight tape. He can play." - Adam Gorney, Rivals.com West Recruiting Analyst
WR Juwan Johnson, Glassboro, N.J. (up 115 to No. 130)
"At 6-foot-4, Johnson is a massive target for quarterbacks and he has added a lot of core strength to help him muscle defenders out of his path. The Glassboro (N.J.) star has very good straight line speed and is explosive out of his breaks, which helps him create separation. Johnson is also very good at using his big frame to box out defenders, which makes it easier for quarterbacks." - Adam Friedman, Rivals.com Mid-Atlantic Recruiting Analyst
TE Hale Hentges, Jefferson City (Mo.) Helias (from NR to No. 150)
"Hentges is one of the country's elite tight ends, and has the potential to climb higher on this list as he runs up against better competition on the camp circuit. What makes him particularly intriguing is his versatility. Hentges' blocking is as far along as his route running. So while a lot of high school tight ends tend to be a bit one-dimensional, Hentges is well-rounded." - Rob Cassidy, Rivals.com West Recruiting Analyst
DB Dechaun Holiday, San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills (up 52 to No. 156)
"Holiday has the size, speed and ability to lock down one side of the field whether at corner or safety and that's why he's being so heavily recruited. The Southern California prospect is a hard-hitter, too, with great timing at defensive back. With his size, Holiday can be really physical with receivers and not give them anything easy." - Gorney
ATH Deon Cain, Tampa Bay Tech (up 69 to No. 164):
"Cain is extremely athletic and could play many positions. He played quarterback as a junior, but showed off his ball skills and route running at the Under Armour Combine. And with the way he stays low when changing direction, you could see him work as a defensive back as well." - Farrell
RB Kendall Bussey, New Orleans Newman (from NR to No. 170)
"Bussey is a highlight waiting to happen. He brings top end speed and a combination of vision and patience. He keeps a low center of gravity and runs with exceptional balance. He plays smart and has the athleticism to go with it." - Jason Howell, Rivals.com Midlands/Southwest Recruiting Analyst
TE Chris Clark, Avon (Conn.) Avon Old Farms (from NR to No. 176)
"Few players have seen their recruitment blow up like Clark over the past two months and it is well deserved. The 6-foot-6 Clark is a Rivals250 Underclassmen Challenge alum, but has shown a lot of progress since then. He added a lot of strength and is more explosive in the open field. Clark is not only a solid receiver, but can also block like a throwback tight end. The added strength has helped Clark's ability to stay engaged and generate push when taking on defensive linemen." - Friedman
OLB Josh Barajas, Merrillville (Ind.) Andrean (from NR to No. 191):
"Barajas did not pick up his first offer until December, but has quickly caught the attention of all the top teams in the region. The Chicago transplant has great size at 6-foot-3 and 210 pounds and plays with an edge to his game. He has the speed and athleticism to play in space, yet is strong enough to hold up at the point of attack and defend the run." - Josh Helmholdt, Rivals.com Midwest Recruiting Analyst
OG Dallas Warmack, Atlanta Mays (from NR to No. 198)
"There's no better way to make a case for your fourth star than going head-to-head with the nation's No. 1 overall player and holding your own. That's exactly what Warmack did against Trenton Thompson at the Georgia Rising Seniors all-star event. He's not the biggest guy in the world, but his technique as an interior lineman is very refined for a player his age." - Wommack


There were also a significant number of prospects who moved down in the Rivals250 as well. Here are breakdowns of some prospects who fell in our rankings.

CLASS OF 2015 RIVALS250 DROPPERS
OLB Darrell Williams, Hoover, Ala. (fell 75 to No. 102)
"Williams slid mainly because we haven't seen the improvements we projected after being so impressed with him at our Rivals250 Underclassmen Challenge in the summer. He hasn't added much size or speed and while he's still a very good prospect, we felt Rivals100 was a bit high based on the slight delay in development. We expected with his frame he'd be bigger by now and would have added more explosiveness." - Farrell
SDE Adam McLean, North Potomac (Md.) Quince Orchard (fell 60 to No. 108)
"McLean slid just outside of the Rivals100 because his ceiling isn't as high as we initially thought. He plays with great energy, aggressiveness and uses his hands very well, but he is a little sawed-off and is only 6-foot-1. There's no doubt McLean is one of the nation's best strong side defensive ends, but a ranking in the Rivals100 is too high at this time." - Friedman
OG Nick Wilson, Alpharetta (Ga.) Milton (fell 39 to No. 141)
"Wilson is still a very technically sound offensive lineman, but as other prospects continue to get bigger and stronger, Wilson's ceiling could be lowering. He had a decent showing at the Under Armour Combine, but was outdone by players close to him in the rankings. He slid 39 spots, which isn't a huge drop, but will have plenty of opportunities to turn it around." - Wommack
WDE Christian Bell, Hoover, Ala. (fell 50 to No. 197)
"Bell is similar to Williams where we expected him to be further along in development. He made honorable mention along the Defensive Line at the Under Armour Combine, but compared to some of the other rush ends, he struggled when offensive linemen got their hands on him and he was unable to recover as well. His slide isn't a huge one and it's based more on seeing additional talent at his position." - Farrell
RB Jay Bradford, Splendora, Texas (fell 103 to No. 226)
"Without a doubt Bradford possesses some raw tools in the size and speed department and he is beginning to tap into that potential. However, we were hoping to see more explosiveness and development on the field. He is still a very solid prospect, but we felt he was a little high in the Rivals250 at this moment." - Howell
WDE D'Andre Walker, Fairburn (Ga.) Langston Hughes (fell out of Rivals250)
"Walker took a big drop in terms of his high end ranking, but he's still a four-star prospect and one who could climb his way back up with some good showings in upcoming months. Walker had a decent junior season, but because of his size is still a bit of a tweener between linebacker and defensive end. With other players at the position showing out at marquee events, we decided to take a more cautious approach having now gotten an extended look at most of the top prospects in the state of Georgia." - Wommack




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