It’s a good question–is any position in the SEC more important than the defensive tackle position? Maybe not. Here are five high school players who are SEC commitments who look like they’ll fit comfortably into the conference–and quickly. Without this kind of defensive line talent, it’s difficult to compete in the SEC.
Editor’s note: Saturday Down South’s references to ratings follow the 247Sports.com composite rankings for high school prospects.
1. Gerald Willis–Florida
- Edna Karr (New Orleans, La.), 6-3/275
- The skinny: Willis was a nice surprise for the Gators during the all-star week, announcing on live television that he would play for the Gators. It almost seemed like his commitment had an effect on the next couple of weeks, as other top prospects came aboard.
2. Travonte Valentine–LSU
- Champagnat (Hialeah, Fla.), 6-3/340
- The skinny: Valentine bumped around as a Florida recruit at one point, then he was with his hometown Miami Hurricanes for a little bit. In the end, he settled with the Tigers, and he’s a huge hole plugger in the middle.
3. Thomas Holley–Florida
- Lincoln (Brooklyn, N.Y.), 6-4/285
- The skinny: The last time the Gators went up to this neck of the woods for an elite defensive lineman, it came back with Dominique Easley–which turned out pretty good for Florida. This was a nice surprise for the Gators.
4. Bijhon Jackson–Arkansas
- El Dorado (Ed Dorado, Ark.), 6-2/335
- The skinny: The best player in Arkansas–period–this ultra quick tackle was coveted by all of the powers that be in the SEC West, but he stayed close to home and Bret Bielema couldn’t be happier. He’s the best recruit the Razorbacks have this year. He can plug up a hole in a heartbeat and keep anything from getting past him.
5. Josh Frazier–Alabama
- Har-ber (Springdale, Ark.), 6-3/335
- The skinny: Just another gem is an amazing Alabama class that is one of the best ever since the classes have been rated with such scrutiny. This is a big guy who can scoot.
Top 5 signees broken down by position:
- Dual-Threat Quarterbacks
- Pro-Style Quarterbacks
- Running Backs
- All-Purpose Running Backs
- Wide Receivers
- Tight Ends
- Offensive Tackles
- Offensive Guards
- Offensive Centers
- Weak-Side Defensive Ends
- Strong-Side Defensive Ends
- Defensive Tackles
- Inside Linebackers
- Outside Linebackers