SEC’s top 5 ‘athlete’ signees for 2014


So what exactly does the “athlete” description mean when it comes to recruiting? Easy: It means “Stick this guy just about everywhere on the field, and he’d be a game-changer for you”. And if that’s the case, the SEC is loaded with some of the finest talent that fits that description.

Here’s a look at some of the most dynamic talent that is coming into the SEC this upcoming season–from high schools only. The “do everything” types.

Editor’s note: Saturday Down South’s references to ratings follow the composite rankings. Note, running back and wide receiver rankings will run later this week.

1. Bo Scarbrough–Alabama

  • IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.), 6-2/225
  • The skinny: Originally from Tuscaloosa, Scarbrough played at the IMG Academy last fall–where athletes go to fine tune themselves for the next level (yes, it’s a high school). He can play running back, he can play linebacker, you name it. He’s quick and he’s huge and has good east-west mobility.

2. Jalen Hurd–Tennessee

  • Beech (Hendersonville, Tenn.), 6-3/230
  • The skinny: Hurd is the top prospect in the state of Tennessee and one of the gems of the Volunteers’ excellent class. He missed his senior season due to injury, but he should be ready to go next year. As a junior, he rushed for 3,357 yards and 43 touchdowns. He has great speed and very few weaknesses, and though he has the size and speed (4.37 seconds in the 40) to play many positions (linebacker, even receiver), he’ll be running the ball at Tennessee. Versatile is the key word here.

3. Jamoral Graham–Mississippi State

  • Newton County (Decatur, Miss.), 5-11/180
  • The skinny: Choose how you want this guy to beat you. He can play wide receiver, he can play safety, he can return kicks–whatever you want. This past fall, he did a little bit of everything and did it very well. He accounted for 13 touchdowns in what seemed like half a dozen different ways (is that possible?). He’ll be the playmaker this program needs.

4. Darrel Williams–LSU

  • John Ehret (Marrero, La.), 6-0/220
  • The skinny: Williams, a former Arizona State commitment, really caught steam–recruiting wise–over the course of the past season. Tennessee, LSU and Florida all offered within a few weeks of each other in November after Williams’ impressed with his ability to run the ball. Look for this to be a darkhorse “top recruit” for the Tigers.

5. JoJo Robinson–Arkansas

  • Northwestern (Miami, Fla.), 6-0/185
  • The skinny: A former Florida State commitment, Robinson was a talent in south Florida this past year and likely projects at wide receiver at the next level–but make no mistake, this guy could be an impact in several spots.

Top 5 signees broken down by position:



Athletes & Specialists

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  • Brian, I love this story. You could write a book on ATHLETES who played multiple great roles in top NCAA football teams.

    • Totally agree. Some kids can’t be pigeonholed. While the Tennessee fans get mad EVERY SINGLE TIME we’ve done athletes (3 times with this list since August), they don’t realize that being labeled an “athlete” is a mark of respect, not a downgrade. It means wherever you put this guy, he’ll kill the opposition, regardless of what the USC coach (ahem, Tee) says.


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