Rivals National Recruitment Director Adam gorney and recruitment analyst Sam Spiegelman together with Andrew Bone from BamaInsider.com and Mike Singer from BlueandGold.com tackle three topics in recruitment and determine if they believe in each statement.
Notre Dame is the clear leader of four-star WR CJ Williams.
Gorney takes: FACT. CJ Williams had a lot of positive things to say about each of his top five, but I think so Vor Frue holds the edge, though I would not be shocked if USC or Texas run one last race against him. The Irish will be hard to beat. The four-star recipient loves the culture, academics and football of Notre Dame, and it just feels like he would fit into that program. Williams also sees an opportunity in Notre Dame’s offense as an outside receiver who could immediately help the Irish. I wouldn’t be shocked if he goes to USC, but Notre Dame feels it has a big edge right now.
Singer takes: FACT. Notre Dame has done an excellent job in Williams’ recruitment. I never felt that Notre Dame was one of the best candidates for Williams early on, but the recipients’ coach Del Alexander and Co. continued to work at Williams because of how strong a pass on and off the field he was for the fighting Irish. Their efforts have not paid off yet as he has not given his commitment, but I am not sure which school in his top five is running No. 2, provided Notre Dame has first place. Is it the local USC, which typically recruits Mater Dei well? Is it Texas or Stanford, where he also officially visited in June with the Irish? Personally, I can not see it Alabama as a threat to Notre Dame in recruitment. I think it’s pretty clear that Notre Dame is the leader of Williams, but he has not made his decision yet.
2. Jaheim Oatis recently visited Ole Miss. It is possible that he is turning to the rebels from Alabama.
Gorney takes: FACT. Be Miss has actually not recruited so well at the top of the state list over the last few years and it’s silly to play against Alabama and not something I want to do but my bet is that Ole Miss will not give up Jaheim Oatis and his relationship with position coach Randall Joyner should play a role here. Will Oatis withdraw its Alabama promise and end up on Ole Miss? Nobody knows right now. But the rebels will not stop recruiting, and Joyner will continue to play a major role going forward.
Ben takes: FICTION. Oatis surprised many when he announced his commitment to Alabama this spring. The timing was surprising, not the choice. Oatis has visited Alabama several times since his 8th grade. Alabama has always been at or near the top of its list. He also visited Alabama a few times in June. Oatis also visited Ole Miss and Mississippi State last month. State schools will continue to put heavy pressure on Oatis, but he is pleased with his commitment to Crimson Tide and is not expected to reverse his commitment. He has a good bond with Alabama’s defensive line coach Freddie Roach and defensive coordinator Pete Golding. The ability of the tide to constantly eradicate elite defensive linemen is still a strong selling point to any top player in the position.
After Elite 11, there should only be one five-star pro-style quarterback in the 2022 class.
Gorney takes: FICTION. The last time only two quarterbacks were taken in the first round of the NFL Draft was in 2015, and twice since then there have been five drafted so early. It makes me believe, since Rival’s rankings are based on college potential and NFL draft rankings, that there should be more, not fewer, five-star quarterbacks in this class. At Elite 11, several players made an argument for this distinction, and it would be at the top of the list Clemson commit Cade Klubnik. There will be a debate about LSU lift Walker Howard and Georgia commit Gunner Stockton (when we can see him at a live event again) but Quinn Ewers is certainly locked in as a five star, and then there are many others to consider. This summer was an excellent opportunity to see all the quarterbacks in different settings and I’m pretty sure there are more five star QBs out there.
Spiegelman takes: FICTION. This is a difficult question, because at Elite 11 we were assured that Quinn Ewers was perhaps the most talented passer-by in the entire country and is an obvious five-star in this cycle. However, there are quite a few names that are definitely in the conversation about a fifth star, or can certainly continue to make a compelling case for it at the end of their senior seasons. Clemson-bound passerby Cade Klubnik, USC-bound Devin Brown, LSU-bound Walker Howard and Texas A&M-bound Conner Weigman are all outstanding quarterbacks. Klubnik, who came back-to-back state titles, was Elite 11 MVP. Howard led his high school team to a perfect season with a state championship this fall as well. Weigman and Brown also showed a ton at the Elite 11 final. In other words, there will be plenty of names in the mix as five-star quarterbacks, and in a prime position, I could imagine more five-stars at the end of the cycle.