Top 2020 Uncommitted Recruits Heading into Early Signing Day

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 16, 2019

Top 2020 Uncommitted Recruits Heading into Early Signing Day

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    Darnell Washington
    Darnell WashingtonCredit: 247Sports

    Late December not only means the start of bowl season but also the early signing period for this year's recruiting cycle, which will take place from Dec. 18-20 this year.

    Added to the recruiting schedule in 2017, the early signing window affords schools a chance to get recruits to sign letters of intent well ahead of the longstanding national signing day in February.

    While many of the nation's top recruits already have firm commitments in place, several 5-star prospects are still on the board, including six players among the top 50 nationally in the 247 composite rankings.

    Among that group are the 2020 crop's top inside linebacker, cornerback and running back, as well as the No. 1 athlete in the class.

    Ahead is a closer look at the top uncommitted recruits as early signing day approaches.

Other Uncommitted Top-100 Prospects

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    Avantae Williams
    Avantae WilliamsCredit: Andrew Ivins, 247Sports

    Before we dive into the remaining unsigned top-50 prospects in the 2020 recruiting class, here's a quick rundown of the prospects who have yet to sign in the 51-100 range of the composite rankings:

    • No. 55: S Avantae Williams
    • No. 57: WR Gary Bryant Jr.
    • No. 59: WR Xzavier Henderson
    • No. 71: DE Alfred Collins
    • No. 72: WR Arian Smith
    • No. 76: CB Dontae Manning
    • No. 80: RB Daniyel Ngata
    • No. 83: QB CJ Stroud
    • No. 97: OT Marcus Dumervil
    • No. 99: OLB Antonio Doyle

OLB Phillip Webb (No. 42 in 247 Composite)

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    Phillip Webb
    Phillip WebbCredit: Andrew Ivins, 247Sports

    Phillip Webb has narrowed his list of schools to five, with Alabama, Auburn, Florida, LSU and Oklahoma still in the mix for the 4-star outside linebacker.

    The 6'3½", 224-pound Georgia high school standout is the No. 4 outside linebacker in the class, and LSU is viewed as the favorite to land him with all 11 crystal ball predictions pointing him toward the Tigers.

    Here's an excerpt from his scouting report at 247Sports:

    "Long athlete that is still relatively underdeveloped physically and has growth potential. Plays in a stand-up pass-rush role where he screams off the edge in high school. Shows outstanding game speed. Closes quickly in the backfield. Can change direction in space effectively."

    It's easy to see how all of that could add up to a game-changing player at the linebacker position.

    He has made official visits to Alabama, Florida, LSU and Oklahoma. The Tigers were his first visit all the way back on June 21, while the Crimson Tide were his most recent on Dec. 6.

    "I’m looking for a place I can get a good education, a place I’m comfortable with and feels like home," Webb told Will Hammock of Gwinnett Prep Sports in August. "Also a place where I can fit their defensive scheme pretty well."

RB Zachary Evans (No. 14 in 247 Composite)

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    Zachary Evans
    Zachary EvansCredit: Brian Perroni, 247Sports

    The top running back in this year's recruiting class, Zachary Evans will be choosing from Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Ohio State and Oklahoma after narrowing his list of schools in May.

    The 5'11", 200-pound North Shore standout won MaxPreps Junior National Player of the Year honors last season when he rushed for 1,785 yards and 29 touchdowns, and he had 1,483 yards and 27 touchdowns as a sophomore in 2017.

    Here's what 247Sports had to say about Evans:

    "Effortlessly strings moves together in the open field to elude multiple defenders. Chameleon in ability to alter running styles, going from elusive darter to hole-punching, straight-line galloper. Home run hitter with high-volume capability. Patient and presses the line of scrimmage to set up blocks."

    Evans was originally scheduled to announce his decision on Dec. 4. He is now expected to sign during the early signing period, though he may not announce his decision until Jan. 2 at the Under Armour All-American Game.

    LSU is the heavy favorite on the crystal ball side of things, garnering 15 of the 17 predictions, but Evans has been a tough one to nail down throughout the recruiting process.

ATH Darnell Washington (No. 10 in 247 Composite)

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    Darnell Washington
    Darnell WashingtonCredit: Blair Angulo, 247Sports

    The No. 1 athlete in the 2020 recruiting class, Darnell Washington has the tools to be a dynamic tight end at the next level.

    With a massive 6'7½", 261-pound frame and good hands, he has a chance to make an immediate impact, and one of his high school coaches pegged him as the "Zion Williamson of college football" while talking with Bleacher Report's Adam Kramer.

    His 247Sports scouting report reads as follows:

    "Strong pass-catcher who is a matchup nightmare in the red zone. Uses his body well to shield defenders. Big target who can run past most linebackers. Decent hands and can high-point the football. ...Potential to make an immediate impact at Power Five level as true freshman."

    The Las Vegas-area native narrowed his list to Georgia, Miami and Tennessee prior to his senior season at Desert Pines High School, but he has also made official visits to Alabama and Florida over the past few months.

    The Bulldogs hold 10 of 12 crystal ball predictions.

CB Kelee Ringo (No. 8 in 247 Composite)

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    Kelee Ringo
    Kelee RingoCredit: 247Sports

    The top cornerback in the 2020 recruiting class has yet to make his decision.

    With a long 6'2", 205-pound frame, Kelee Ringo has a chance to develop into an elite player in the secondary and the polish to make an immediate impact next season.

    Here's what 247Sports had to say about his wide array of skills:

    "Explosive athlete with terrific straight-line speed. Length to cover big receivers out wide. Highly competitive and thrives in man coverage. Stingy near the line of scrimmage. Opens hips and stays with speedsters. Very good ball skills."

    A Scottsdale, Arizona, native who attends Saguaro High School, Ringo trimmed his list of schools to five in June, with Alabama, Georgia, Ohio State, Oregon and Texas still in the running.

    Thus far, 12 of 13 crystal ball predictions have gone in the direction of the Bulldogs, with the other given to the Longhorns.

DE Jordan Burch (No. 5 in 247 Composite)

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    Jordan Burch
    Jordan BurchCredit: Hale McGranahan, 247Sports

    It's rare in today's social-media-driven climate to see a top-tier prep prospect who has managed to remain something of a mystery.

    "In the past two years, [Jordan] Burch hasn't done many interviews at his family's request and rarely posts on social media even when he makes visits to a school, unlike most top-flight prospects," wrote Lou Bezjak of The State.

    That has only made his recruitment that much more compelling.

    The 6'5", 275-pound defensive end has the power and athleticism to be an absolute force off the edge, and he already has an NFL body.

    His 247Sports scouting report includes the following:

    "He plays with outstanding bend and leverage, with the ability to dip and run the arc off the edge. Has a high level first step and play speed in pursuit. Doubles as a strong, physical run defender and looks to play with a high effort level."

    He announced a final five of Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, LSU and South Carolina on Oct. 28, and there's still no clear front-runner to sign him.

ILB Justin Flowe (No. 4 in 247 Composite)

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    Justin Flowe
    Justin FloweCredit: Gary Breedlove, 247Sports

    While Clemson has looked like the favorite to land Justin Flowe throughout the recruiting process, the momentum has shifted toward Oregon of late, according to Clint Buckley of 247Sports.

    The fact that the Tigers landed a commitment from fellow 5-star linebacker Trenton Simpson on Saturday could play a role in Flowe's decision, which is expected to come Wednesday.

    Whoever lands him will be getting a special player, as 247Sports' scouting report made abundantly clear:

    "He's relentless in how he plays, refuses to stay blocked and does a great job in pursuit. He's tremendous getting in the backfield and making plays. ...He has the ability to elevate everyone around him by how hard he plays and the emotion he brings to the field."

    Georgia and Miami are the other two teams in his final four, which he announced in August, and he made an official visit to USC on Saturday.


    All rankings referenced in the article refer to the 247Sports composite rankings.