College Football Top Incoming Freshmen
The college football season is nearing closer and appears to be ready to start on time, as players will get the green light to return to campus in June to begin voluntary workouts.
Last season saw several true freshmen make an impact from day one and become instant stars. Among that group includes the likes of LSU corner Derek Stingley Jr., North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell, and Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux.
With that in mind, we will take a look at this season’s incoming freshman class in no particular order and highlight some of the top recruits who could potentially make noise right away.
Bryan Bresee – DT Clemson
|6-5, 290lb||Damascus HS||Damascus, MD|
The number one recruit according to multiple recruiting services, Bresee should be in the early mix for playing time in Brent Venables’ defense. The Maryland native excels as a run stopper and possesses the necessary quickness to burst into the backfield and disrupt opposing quarterbacks, doing so with a mean streak that mirrors Ndamukong Suh.
Bryce Young – QB Alabama
|5-11, 183lb||Mater Dei HS||Pasadena, CA|
Mater Dei has produced its fair share of high-level college quarterbacks with names such as Heisman winner Matt Leinart, Matt Barkley, and Colt Brennan. Bryce Young will look to add his name to that list, however, he will have to beat out Mac Jones who stood in for the departed Tua Tagovailoa. With that said, it may be too tempting for Nick Saban to not have a dual-threat passer under center, even if Young may be undersized.
Arik Gilbert – TE LSU
|6-5, 253lb||Marietta HS||Marietta, GA|
Arik Gilbert is landing in an ideal situation at LSU with Thaddeus Moss now in the NFL, while presumed starting quarterback Myles Brennan should look to lean on Gilbert as a second option behind Biletnikoff winner Ja’Marr Chase. With an NFL ready frame as a freshman, Gilbert should be a matchup nightmare for SEC defenses for the next three years.
Noah Sewell – ILB Oregon
|6-2, 266lb||Orem HS||Orem, UT|
The second five-star prospect from Utah after Haloti Ngata, Noah Sewell is a freak athlete given his nearly 270-pound frame. He will join his brother Penei, the reigning Outland Trophy winner and will be pushed by fellow five star recruit Justin Flowe for playing time in Eugene. Although his combination of size and athleticism makes him a versatile piece for Oregon’s defense, his personal preference and likely landing spot will be at middle linebacker.
Elias Ricks – CB LSU
|6-2, 192lb||IMG Academy (Bradenton, FL)||Rancho Cucamonga, CA|
The defending champion Bayou Bengals are spoiled in the secondary, as they return freshman sensation Derek Stingley Jr. at corner as well as senior safeties JaCoby Stevens and Kary Vincent Jr. Added to the mix will be Ricks, who will challenge sophomore Cordale Flott for time at the other corner slot.
Zach Evans – RB TCU
|5-11, 200lb||North Shore HS||Houston, TX|
After a long winding road during a recruiting cycle that included a decommitment from Georgia, Zach Evans will be suiting up for the Horned Frogs. Arguably the most hyped Texas running back prospect in more than a decade, Evans will be leaned on heavily by a TCU offense that has lost top playmakers Darius Anderson and Jalen Reagor to the NFL.
Demond Demas – WR Texas A&M
|6-3, 182lb||Tomball HS||Tomball, TX|
When you play in a division with Alabama, LSU, and Auburn, you will need all the offensive firepower you can get. Fortunately for the Aggies, the uber-athletic Demas will give quarterback Kellen Mond another throwing target to compliment senior receiver Jhamon Ausbon and sophomore tight end Jalen Wydermyer. With his insane leaping ability, look for Demas to be a popular target for 50/50 balls in the red zone.
Michael Mayer TE Notre Dame
|6-4, 232lb||Covington Catholic HS||Alexandria, KY|
Notre Dame is often referred to as Tight End U, and for good reason, as coach Brian Kelly has developed an NFL draft pick at the position seemingly every year. That is good news for Michael Mayer, who will compete for the starting job and fill in for the departed Cole Kmet, and look to join the ranks of elite Irish tight ends such as Kyle Rudolph and Tyler Eifert.