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May 22, 2014

Rivals rankings: Position analysis

MORE: Rivals100 | Rivals250

Coming off a a very busy spring camp season, the Rivals.com analysts have re-ranked the Class of 2015. Check out the updated rankings by position and get analysis on some of the notable moves below.

POS: PQB | DQB | RB | APB | FB | WR | TE | OT | OG | C | DT | WDE | SDE | ILB | OLB | CB | S | ATH

PRO-STYLE QUARTERBACKS
UCLA commit Josh Rosen remains the No. 1 pro-style quarterback after he increased his lead on Ricky Towns.
NOTABLE RISER: Ross Trail, Olive Branch, Miss. (Up 9 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Brian Lewerke, Phoenix Pinnacle (Down 4 spots)
COMMENTS: No. 1 Josh Rosen further solidified his hold on the top spot with a strong day at RCS Southern California and No. 2 Ricky Town dropping from five-stars to four-stars. Trail, along with Penn State commit Brandon Wimbush, Washington State commit Tyler Hilinski and Michigan commit Alex Malzone, make positive moves in the four-star range and place in the top 11 for the position.

DUAL-THREAT QUARTERBACKS
Travis Waller broke into the top 5 this spring.
NOTABLE RISER: Travis Waller, Anaheim (Calif.) Servite (Up 11 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Chason Virgil, Mesquite (Tex.) West Mesquite (Down 9 spots)
COMMENTS: The top five saw a lot of movement, with previous No. 2 Torrance Gibson moving to the athlete position and Chad President moving into the rankings from the athlete position. Texas Tech commit Jarrett Stidham remains No. 1. He is followed by Kyler Murray and Notre Dame commit Blake Barnett. President and Waller round out the top five.

ALL-PURPOSE BACKS
Taj Griffin takes over at No. 1 in the APB category.
NOTABLE RISER: Dontae Strickland, Monmouth Junction (N.J.) South Brunswick (Up 2 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Traveon Samuel, Phenix City (Ala.) Central (Out of the ranking)
COMMENTS: Former No. 1 Rodney Anderson was quiet the last few months and was passed up by two guys who had big springs, including new No. 1 Taj Griffin. Nebraska commit Kendall Bussey also saw his stock improve after a big spring and he now holds down the No. 2 position. Baylor commit JaMycal Hasty and Nyheim Hines of Garner, N.C., move over to the all-purpose category and debut in the top 10.

RUNNING BACKS
Nick Gibson shot up 11 spots after his performance at RCS Birmingham.
NOTABLE RISER: Nick Gibson, Pinson (Ala.) Pinson Valley (Up 11 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Reggie Gallaspy, Greensboro (N.C.) South Guilford (Down 10 spots)
COMMENTS: Damien Harris remains the top player at the position, but he is now one of two five-stars in the ranking after Jacques Patrick adds a star and takes over the No. 2 spot. Auburn commit Kerryon Johnson moves over from the athlete position and takes over the No. 5 spot in the rankings. Gibson, Johnny Frasier of Princeton, N.C., and Miami commit Dexter Williams make big moves in the four-star range and each holds down spots in the top 30.

FULLBACKS
David Ducre is still the top-rated fullback for 2015.
NOTABLE RISER: Chandler Cox, Apopka, Fla. (Up 1 spot)
NOTABLE DROPPER: None
COMMENTS: Several new names surface in the fullback rankings, while others move out to other positions. LSU commit David Ducre remains No. 1, but he is now followed by Cox and Dare Odeyingbo of Irving (Tex.) Cisterian Prep, who moves over from the running back position. Richard Worship of Parma Heights (Ohio) Valley Forge also debuts in the rankings at No. 5.

WIDE RECEIVERS
Alabama commit Daylon Charlot is ranked No. 150 in the Rivals250.
NOTABLE RISER: Daylon Charlot, Patterson, La. (Up 17 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Dontea Jones, Louisville, Miss. (Down 20 spots)
COMMENTS: A new No. 1 graces the ranking after the spring, with New Orleans' Tyron Johnson jumping up from the No. 5 spot previously and adding his fifth star. Former five-star George Campbell is down to No. 6 after the spring, while Miami Central's Da'Vante Phillips makes his first appearance in the top five, landing at No. 4. Tennessee commit Preston Williams along with Stanley Morgan and Cordell Broadus all saw bumps in their stock and move into the top 15.

TIGHT ENDS
After playing wide receiver, Christian Owens is now slotted as a tight end.
NOTABLE RISER: Chris Clark, Avon (Conn.) Old Farms (Up 3 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Nick Bowers, Kittanning (Pa.) Senior (Out of the ranking)
COMMENTS: The top three remain unchanged, with the first shake-up coming at No. 4 where Clark lands after upping his stock this off-season. Georgia commit Christian Owens comes over from the wide receiver position and debuts at No. 10 in the ranking. Rutgers commit Nakia Griffin and Boca Raton (Fla.) St. Andrews School's Jake Bargas debut in the ranking and round out the top 20.

OFFENSIVE TACKLES
Isaiah Prince was a big mover this spring.
NOTABLE RISER: Isaiah Prince, Greenbelt (Md.) Eleanor Roosevelt (Up 12 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Christian Pellage, Brooksville (Fla.) Nature Coast (Down 20 spots)
COMMENTS: Chuma Edoga takes over the top spot in the ranking after moving over from offensive guard and earning his fifth star. The rest of the top 10 remains much the same as before with Prince moving into the No. 6 spot as the only major change. The highest debut was made by Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy's Tyree St. Louis, who earned his fourth star and takes over the No. 17 position on the list after a big spring.

OFFENSIVE GUARDS
Lester Cotton has climbed to No. 1 among guards in the class of 2015.
NOTABLE RISER: Lester Cotton, Tuscaloosa (Ala.) Central (Up 5 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Jalin Barnett, Lawton, Okla. (Down 5 spots)
COMMENTS: For the second update in a row, Cotton is the most notable riser and this time he takes over the No. 1 spot at the position. No. 2 also goes to a new name in the ranking, Alabama commit Richie Petitbon, who moves over from tackle and ups his rating to 6.0. Another addition from the offensive tackle position, Fairburn (Ga.) Creekside's Venzell Boulware, adds a fourth star and rounds out the top 10.

CENTERS
Brandon Kennedy moves from guard to center.
NOTABLE RISER: Brandon Kennedy, Wetumpka, Ala. (Debuts at No. 1)
NOTABLE DROPPER: None
COMMENTS: Previously unrated Kennedy debuts at No. 1 after moving over from the offensive guard position. The rest of the top five fall in the same order as before, but the list expands from five to 10 names. Charlotte Christian's Brian Chaffin is the most notable new name in the second half of the list, debuting at No. 6 after moving up from a 5.5 to a 5.7 Rivals Rating.

WEAKSIDE DEFENSIVE ENDS
Josh Sweat earned a fifth star this spring.
NOTABLE RISER: Josh Sweat, Chesapeake (Va.) Oscar Smith (Up 3 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Keith Joseph Jr., Passcagoula, Miss. (Down 13 spots)
COMMENTS: Sweat takes over the top position on the list after his move to five stars. He is followed by Orange (Calif.) Lutheran's Keisean Lucier-South who moves up from the No. 6 spot. Former No. 1 Mekhi Brown now sits in the third position on the list. Several new three-stars make their debuts, including Gibsonton (Fla.) East Bay's Marques Ford, who checks in at No. 14.

STRONGSIDE DEFENSIVE ENDS
Byron Cowart's performance at RCS Orlando helped push him to No. 1.
NOTABLE RISER: Ryan Buchholz, Malvern (Pa.) Great Valley (Up 6 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Darian Roseboro, Lincolnton, N.C. (Down 2 spots)
COMMENTS: Byron Cowart takes over as the No. 1 player overall in the 2015 class, but he was already No. 1 in the strongside defensive end rankings. Behind him, though, there was a lot of movement. Fellow five-star CeCe Jefferson moves over from the defensive tackle position and assumes the second position on the list, followed by Alabama commit Jonathan Ledbetter, who moves up from No. 7 previously.

DEFENSIVE TACKLES
Neville Gallimore makes his debut in the rankings as a four-star.
NOTABLE RISER: Jauntavius Johnson, Lincoln, Ala. (Debuts at No. 28)
NOTABLE DROPPER: T.D. Moton, Shreveport (La.) Calvary Baptist (Down 17 spots)
COMMENTS: CeCe Jefferson moving to the strongside defensive end position and Terry Beckner Jr. moving into the ranking accounted for the only changes in the top five. The biggest changes came further down the list, where new names were the story. Canadian Neville Gallimore starts off as a four-star and debuts at No. 18. Johnson leads several three-star risers making their debuts in the ranking.

INSIDE LINEBACKERS
C.J. Stalker climbed after a strong RCS Columbus.
NOTABLE RISER: C.J. Stalker, West Chester (Ohio) Lakota West (Up 8 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Johnathon Sutton, Swansea, S.C. (Down 13 spots)
COMMENTS: The top eight remain unchanged, but Tevon Coney's move from the outside linebacker position places him in the No. 9 spot. Stalker and North Carolina commit Andre Smith are the two big movers within the position, jumping up from the last two spots in the previous ranking to rank in the top 15. Smiths (Ala.) Station's Amonte Caban makes the highest debut at No. 14.

OUTSIDE LINEBACKERS
Chad Smith added a fourth star to his resume this spring.
NOTABLE RISER: Chad Smith, Sterling (Va.) Dominion (Up 18 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Cameron Townsend, Missouri City (Tex.) Ridge Point (Down 18 spots)
COMMENTS: Two new additions from the athlete position -- Osa Masina and Kyahva Tezino -- along with brand new four-star Porter Gustin, all move into the top 10. Smith and fellow Virginia Tremaine Edmunds make the biggest moves within the ranking after both jumped from three-stars to four-stars. The ranking grows by 10 spots, with Florida State commit Brian Bell rounding out the top 50.

CORNERBACKS
Mook Reynolds impressed onlookers at RCS Charlotte.
NOTABLE RISER: Mook Reynolds, Greensboro (N.C.) North Guilford (Up 15 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Mike Hughes, New Bern, N.C. (Down 28 spots)
COMMENTS: The top three from the last ranking shuffle this time around and five-star Iman Marshall is now No. 1 followed by Kevin Toliver II and then Minkah Fitzpatrick. Further down, California's Isaiah Langley and Pennsylvania's John Reid make slight jumps to round out the top 10. Reynolds is part of a group of five new four-stars at the position.

SAFETIES
Florida State commit Derwin James is the new No. 1 safety.
NOTABLE RISER: Prentice McKinney, Dallas South Oak Cliff (Up 19 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Hunter Dale River Ridge (La.) John Curtis (Down 7 spots)
COMMENTS: Florida State commit Derwin James moves over from the athlete position and up to five-stars to take over the No. 1 spot in the ranking. Will Sunderland of Midwest City, Okla., makes his first appearance in the top 10 after a big spring, while McKinney jumps all the way up to No. 11. Tennessee commit Stephen Griffin is among those who raised their stock this spring to debut in the ranking.

ATHLETES
Ray-Ray McCloud III shot up to the No. 2 ranking among athletes.
NOTABLE RISER: Ray-Ray McCloud III, Tampa Sickles (Up 8 spots)
NOTABLE DROPPER: Myles Hartsfield, Parlin (N.J.) Sayreville War Memorial (Down 10 spots)
COMMENTS: McCloud makes the most noteworthy move, taking over the No. 2 spot after previously ranking 10th. Plantation (Fla.) American Heritage's Torrance Gibson comes over from the dual-threat quarterback position and lands at No. 4. Jefferson (La.) Riverdale's Donte Jackson makes the highest debut among non-position movers, earning his fourth star and placing 12th in the ranking.

KICKERS
NOTABLE RISER: Austin Seibert, Belleville (Ill.) West (Debuts at No. 1)
NOTABLE DROPPER: None
COMMENTS: The first ranking of kickers in the 2015 class features Oklahoma commit Seibert as the No. 1 prospect. Seibert is both a placekicker and punter, as is No. 2 Drew Galitz of Rowlett, Tex. Orlando (Fla.) Boone punter Tommy Townsend rounds out the initial top five.

Josh Helmholdt is a Midwest Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.



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