Uncommitted 2014 College Football Recruits Who Are Surefire Locks for the SEC
The SEC is home to the best athletes in college football. The players in the conference play at a different speed than those in the Big 12, Pac-12, Big Ten and ACC.
The conference dominates the recruiting rankings each February, and its programs field the most talented teams in the country. The 2014 recruiting cycle will help continue the SEC's dominant recruiting tradition, as several elite recruits are locks to join the conference.
A big left tackle prospect will be playing in the SEC West. A pair of great prospects from Alabama will be choosing between the Iron Bowl schools. Also, a linebacker from Illinois will spurn the Big Ten for an SEC program.
Donell Stanley is a great guard prospect with terrific potential to be a mauling offensive lineman in the SEC. He is predicted to sign with in-state favorite South Carolina, says 247Sports. However, Alabama is also in the mix, so do not count out the Crimson Tide.
Stanley, who is 6'4" and 327 pounds, has tremendous strength and power. He can explode out of his stance, play like a giant at the point of attack and pankcake a defender. Stanley also flashes quick feet and good agility, which helps his pulling and trapping ability.
Stanley could be an All-SEC guard before he leaves the conference.
Josh Frazier, DT
Josh Frazier could be the best pure nose tackle prospect in the country. He is expected to stay in-state, as Arkansas is the favorite, per 247Sports. Frazier would help Bret Bielema transition Arkansas into a physical football team.
Frazier, who is 6'3" and 324 pounds, has good snap quickness out of his stance. He can play with leverage, as he flashes the ability to play with a low pad level. Frazier possesses fantastic strength, as he can powerfully explode into a blocker and anchor down versus a running play.
He will not impress observers with his pass-rushing skills, nor will Frazier lead the SEC in sacks. However, he has the quickness and strength to push the pocket from the middle.
Ronnie Clark, S/OLB
Ronnie Clark is an outstanding athlete who can play safety and outside linebacker. Clark appears to be an SEC lock, as Alabama is the predicted winner of his services, according to 247Sports.
Clark is a 6'3.5", 210-pound defensive stud with great ball skills. He sees the field, plays with solid speed and has good range.
Although Clark plays in the secondary, he will grow into an outside linebacker in the SEC. Look for Clark's athleticism, cover ability and ball skills to make him one of the best pass-defending 'backers in the conference.
Clifton Garrett, LB
Clifton Garrett is one of hardest-hitting defensive players in America. He is a physical linebacker prospect from Illinois, but he will not be playing college football in the Midwest.
Garrett has good instincts to get a jump on plays. He locates the football quickly, fills gaps and meets the ball with extreme force. Garrett can play linebacker in any scheme. His style of play would be be a good fit in the SEC.
Racean Thomas, RB
Racean Thomas is a good running back prospect who is also comfortable catching the football out of the backfield. He is from Alabama, and is expected to sign with Auburn, per the experts at 247Sports.
Thomas, who is 5'11" and 196 pounds, has good speed and quickness. He has a compact frame, flashes great strength and is a great receiving threat. Thomas has solid elusiveness, as he is good in the open field. He is a runner who has a solid blend of speed and power.
Do not be surprised if Thomas leads his team in rushing while also being among its leaders in receptions multiple times during his SEC career.
Elisha Shaw, DL
Elisha Shaw is a defensive lineman who can lead a clinic on how to play strong at the point of attack. He has great strength, heavy hands and can hold his ground versus double-teams.
A three-team race is unfolding in Shaw's recruitment, as Ole Miss, Alabama and Georgia are the core suitors, says 247Sports. Shaw, who is 6'5" and 295 pounds, has the size and power to be an excellent defensive lineman in the SEC.
He can play defensive end in a 3-4 scheme, or defensive tackle in a 4-3 alignment. Shaw has a strong punch, can press blocks and has solid short-area quickness when pursuing the ball.
Laurence Jones, S
Most safeties have tight hips and are not explosive in transition. They outgrow the position and must be moved to outside linebacker at some point in their careers.
However, Laurence Jones has the athleticism and hip flexibility to be an exception to that trend. He is a 6'2", 200-pound safety with good speed and range. Jones—who is from Louisiana— is expected to sign with LSU or Alabama, per 247Sports.
Jones can roam in the secondary, play deep and use his ball skills to jump passing lanes. He will help support the run, but he is more comfortable on top of the defense where he can play in space, shoot out of transition and make plays on the football.
Marlon Humphrey, CB
Marlon Humphrey is a great cornerback prospect with college-ready anticipation skills. Humphrey, whose father Bobby played for Alabama, is strongly expected to follow in his father's footsteps, says 247Sports.
Alabama would be getting a young cover corner who can play man, off-man and zone coverage. Humphrey, who is 6'1" and 175 pounds, has great athleticism and instincts. He sees the field well, has a good feel for the game and has great short-area quickness.
Humphrey also has the potential to grow into a safety. He flashes excellent range, ball skills and has the speed to play in the deep middle of a secondary.
Cameron Robinson, LT
Great left tackles are hard to find, and when college coaches find one, they usually make that prospect a priority. Cameron Robinson is a great left tackle prospect who will play in the SEC, as he is expected to sign with LSU or Alabama, according to the experts at 247Sports.
Robinson, who is 6'5 and 330 pounds, has great size and agility. He can bend his knees, fire back out of his stance and shadow rushers as a pass protector. Robinson has the athleticism and strength to be a great run-blocker, as he can get on the second level and hit moving targets.
Offensive line recruits are rarely ready to play in the SEC as true freshmen, but Robinson may be an exception. The only question is if he will block for LSU or Alabama.