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. 12 – Lorenzo Carter, Georgia, DE
HOMETOWN: Norcross (Ga.)
RANK: Five-star prospect; No. 18 overall prospect in America.
THE SKINNY: Carter is big, he’s athletic and he’s intelligent–a great combination. He was a big-time SEC recruiting battle, even though he was the No. 1 player in the talent-rich state of Georgia last season. Want to know how active he is in the backfield? Consider this: As a junior, he had 45 tackles for loss.
WHERE HE’LL MAKE AN IMPACT: It is true that Georgia is in pretty good shape on the defensive side of the ball, but Carter is the kind of player who might be able to make plays the returning starters can’t–so don’t expect him to be holding a clipboard in 2014. Look for him to get his chance to shine.
CARTER SAYS: “That defense is going to be nasty, and I plan on being a big part of it”.
COACH SAYS: “He’s definitely got a lot of speed off the edge. He’s a great kid, great student, just a great person. Their family is unbelievable. He’s the kind of guy that could end up being a captain for you one day. I would expect him to be a leader in his class, but it won’t be long before he takes on some leadership role on the team within the next couple of years.” — Georgia coach Mark Richt
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