Thursday, December 26, 2013
Top ACC UA game targets
By Jared Shanker
The Under Armour All-America Game boasts a majority of the country's premier high school talent, so there is no surprise several ACC teams are fighting to land the few remaining uncommitted All-Americans.
Here are the top five Under Amour All-Americans that ACC schools are heavily pursuing.
1. CB Adoree' Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Serra) The No. 2 cornerback nationally and five-star recruit took an official visit to Florida State, and the Seminoles are definitely in the thick of it for Jackson. He has narrowed down his list, but it is unclear who his No. 1 school is at the moment. Florida, Florida State, LSU or USC are all potential landing spots for the No. 7 recruit. Jackson will be in Florida for the Under Armour game, and then the Noles will travel to California for the BCS National Championship, so both parties will be in each other's territory in the coming weeks.
2. CB Marlon Humphrey (Hoover, Ala./Hoover) While Jackson is not a long shot for the Noles, Humphrey is the five-star recruit they have the best chance at landing. The 6-foot, 179-pound defensive back is down to Alabama and Florida State, and while it seems that the in-state Tide would have the advantage, the Noles are posing a serious threat to Bama coach Nick Saban. Humphrey has a strong relationship with FSU's staff, and Jeremy Pruitt in particular. Humphrey has visited the Noles before and even went to Clemson for the Tigers' game against Florida State. Jimbo Fisher landed Jameis Winston out of Alabama in 2012, and the coach is coming back for more in 2014.
3. RB Dalvin Cook (Miami/Miami Central) The second-highest-rated commitment in the Florida Gators' class, Cook has both ACC Florida schools thinking the No. 4 running back will flip to them by the end of the Under Armour game. The four-star prospect originally committed to the Gators in April, not long after his teammate Joseph Yearby, No. 19 in the ESPN 300, flipped to Miami from Florida State. Now the Noles are hoping for a little redemption by landing Cook. The Hurricanes hope that Cook will flip to the team closer to home, giving them Yearby and Cook, No. 20 in the ESPN 300. There is also a good chance that Cook will remain committed to Florida, but speculation has run rampant since the end of the season. He took a handful of official visits during the season, so there was always the belief he could flip. But after the Gators limped to a 4-8 record, some began to think the term "Florida commitment" is a misnomer for Cook.
4. CB Jalen Tabor (Washington, D.C./Friendship) Tabor, No. 5 among cornerbacks, is announcing at the Under Armour game, and the hope among Maryland fans is he will stay close to home (and ESPN 300 tackle Damian Prince will then follow). Tabor has long been considered a Terrapins lean, but speculation is swirling that he might choose to play his college football a few hundred (or thousand) miles from home. Alabama and Arizona hosted Tabor on official visits and are making a strong push for the physical 6-foot-1, 188-pound defensive back. Saban got the last visit from Tabor, and is anyone ever surprised when he pulls out a last-minute recruiting coup? It was just last month that Saban landed five-star Da'Shawn Hand, although many felt he was a lock to Michigan.
5. OT Damian Prince (Forestville, Md./Bishop McNamara) Like Tabor, the RecruitingNation Hot Board projects Prince to nearby Maryland, and has for some time. However, Prince is no lock to the Terrapins, despite coach Randy Edsall's staff holding the lead for the No. 3 offensive tackle. The four-star officially visited Florida State, and the Noles, with all of their recruiting momentum, have been considered the biggest threat to Maryland the last few months. Prince will extend his recruitment past signing day, which could bode well for Maryland, depending on how FSU finishes out its class. South Carolina is a sleeper for Prince and definitely a threat to Maryland, as well.