SDS will rank the SEC’s potential instant impact freshmen–using the month of March–by ranking them No. 31 down to No. 1. This gives our readers an idea of which 2014 signees we believe will step up in the fall and possibly contribute in a big way. Junior college prospects are always players to keep an eye on, obviously, as they’ve already played college ball … and high school prospects at certain positions sometimes flourish early.
Here’s a look at who we think has the ability to step into a good situation and be in for key snaps, and be sure and check out the SEC countdown of impact newcomers at the bottom.
No. 10 – Tony Brown, Alabama, DB
HOMETOWN: Beaumont (Texas)
RANK: Five-star prospect; No. 9 overall prospect in America.
THE SKINNY: Brown seemed headed to LSU all along, as his sister is a track athlete in the class above him–and they are very tight. But the idea of playing at Alabama eventually swayed him. He has already run with the first team at times during early spring drills, and seems to be transitioning well–which is not surprising based on the demeanor of this kid.
WHERE HE’LL MAKE AN IMPACT: Brown is an elite track athlete, just like fellow cornerback signee Marlon Humphrey. Both can just flat out fly, and with Alabama’s need of secondary help–they both could be just the cover guys needed to improve that unit–drastically.
BROWN TELLS SDS: “The coaches say they feel like I can go down the field with any receiver, that they know I can take a receiver out of the game. Whether it’s the best receiver on their team or in the country, they feel like I can do that.”
COACH SAYS: “We’re anxious to help them (Humphrey and Tony Brown) develop. .. both guys will be assets.” — Alabama coach Nick Saban
Editor’s note: Saturday Down South’s references to ratings follow the 247Sports.com composite rankings for high school prospects.
Other impact newcomers:
- No. 1 Leonard Fournette, LSU
- No. 2 Myles Garrett, Texas A&M
- No. 3 Dontavius Blair, Tennessee
- No. 4 D’Haquille Williams, Auburn
- No. 5 Speedy Noil, Texas A&M
- No. 6 Jalen Tabor, Florida
- No. 7 Malachi Dupre, LSU
- No. 8 Bijhon Jackson, Arkansas
- No. 9 C.J. Hampton, Ole Miss
- No. 10 Tony Brown, Alabama
- No. 11 Marlon Humphrey, Alabama
- No. 12 Lorenzo Carter, Georgia
- No. 13 Jalen Hurd, Tennessee
- No. 14 DaVonte Lambert, Auburn
- No. 15 Kyle Allen, Texas A&M
- No. 16 Roc Thomas, Auburn
- No. 17 Aeris Williams, Mississippi State
- No. 18 Avery Gennessy, Texas A&M
- No. 19 Thaddeus Snodgrass, Kentucky
- No. 20 Fahn Cooper, Ole Miss
- No. 21 Nifae Lealao, Vandy
- No. 22 Rod Taylor, Ole Miss
- No. 23 Drew Barker, Kentucky
- No. 24 Da’Shawn Hand, Alabama
- No. 25 Jermaine Eluemunor, Texas A&M
- No. 26 Cory Johnson, Kentucky
- No. 27 JoJo Robinson, Arkansas
- No. 28 Nate Brown, Mizzou
- No. 29 Abu Lamin, South Carolina
- No. 30 Trey Quinn, LSU
- No. 31 Xavier Dampeer, Auburn