SDS talent evaluators Jon Cooper and Brad Crawford spent several months breaking down last year’s highlights, incoming talent and projected 2014 impact following spring practice to compile a list of the SEC’s Top 100 players heading into fall. Athletes were selected by position then ranked overall counting down to No. 1.
Stick with SDS throughout summer and get in on the action using the hashtag #SDSTop100 as we unveil a new player daily leading up to opening night on Aug. 28.
92. Myles Garrett, Frosh., DE, Texas A&M
Wait until you see this nightmare pass rusher arrive on campus in August, the top recruit nationally in the 2014 signing class according to 247Sports. Garrett gives A&M an instant game-changer up front on a defensive line that had trouble generating consistent pressure last season, finishing 10th in the SEC with 21 sacks.
A&M’s defense, after giving up a paltry 32.2 points and 475.8 yards per game last season, needs considerable improvement to compete in the loaded West and coach Kevin Sumlin kept that in mind by landing Garrett and 10 other defenders in the Aggies’ Top 5-ranked class. An athlete with size and speed off the edge like Garrett should come in handy against numerous mobile quarterbacks in A&M’s crosshairs including Dak Prescott, Bo Wallace and Nick Marshall.
While it’s too early to project a starting role for Garrett at South Carolina on Aug. 28, the Aggies could groom the Arlington native the same way the Gamecocks managed Jadeveon Clowney as a true freshman in 2011. The No. 1 player coming out of high school, Clowney made only one start and wasn’t an every-down defensive end but played in all 13 games and eventually was named SEC Freshman of the Year by the league’s coaches.
Garrett, in small doses, will wreak havoc in the West.
2013 statistics: Terrorized unprotected quarterbacks in Texas at James Martin High with 20.5 sacks and 39 TFL.
2014 projection: Depending on how quickly Garrett adjusts to the speed of the college game, 6.5 sacks is a healthy number for an impact true freshman.
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