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May 23, 2013

Ups, downs of latest positional rankings


MORE: Rivals100 | Rivals250

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

Since our last round of positional rankings in March, Rivals.com analysts have criss-crossed the country to see many of the nation's top prospects compete at offseason camps, combines and 7-on-7 events. With the 2013 spring season in the books and big summer events right around the corner, we take a look at notable movements within each position ranking.

INSIDE LOOK: RIVALS.COM POSITION RANKINGS
Pro-style quarterbacks
Notable riser: Brad Kaaya, West Hills (Calif.), Chaminade (From No. 19 to No. 13)
Notable dropper: None
Comment: For the most part, this spring evaluation period was all about rising stocks for these quarterbacks. Miami commit Kaaya got a big bump based on his showings, while new Oregon commit Morgan Mahalak went from unranked to the No. 20 spot at the position. Also entering the rankings are Illinois commit Chayce Crouch (27) and Oregon State commit Nick Mitchell (No. 29).

Dual-threat quarterbacks
Notable riser: Marcus McMaryion, Dinuba (Calif.) (From unranked to No. 16)
Notable dropper:Brandon Dawkins, Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian (From No. 6 to No. 14)
Comments: Things stayed the same at the top but several other players were jumbled, including D.J. Gillins, who fell from No. 4 to No. 9. Among the biggest movers were Brandon Harris, who gained a fourth star and moved up six spots to No. 5 overall and fellow Louisiana product Donovan Isom, who went from unranked to No. 22 at the position.

All-purpose backs
Notable riser: Keith Harrington, St. Petersburg (Fla.) Northeast (From No. 11 to No. 9)
Notable dropper: None
Comments: Four-star Derrell Scott lost his hold on the No. 1 spot but only because Stanley Williams moved over from running back to all-purpose back. Other than a few slides, there were no big droppers. However, Harrington became a 5.7 and moved up two spots based on his camp showings in Florida, while Northwestern commit Auston Anderson entered the rankings at No. 11.

Running backs
Notable riser: Darrel Williams, Marrero (La.) John Ehret (No. 41 to No. 22)
Notable dropper: Kurt Scoby, Mission Hills (Calif.) Bishop Alemany (No. 29 to No. 36)
Comments: This position saw several moves at the top, including the entry of Elijah Hood from athlete and the addition of Joe Mixon to the five-star ranks. Also on the move was Chris James (No. 53 to No. 33) and Kevin Shorter, who came from outside the rankings to No. 37. Scoby was the biggest tumbler, along with Nathan Starks, who went from No. 5 to No. 13 after a series of off-field issues clouded his future.

Fullback
Notable riser: None
Notable dropper: None
Comments: Without any fullback rankings back in March it was a brand new slate of prospects at the position this time around. Neptune Beach (Fla.) Fletcher's Jacob Kraut, pictured, is now the No. 1 prospect in the country. A new entry at the position is South Carolina commit Joe Blue, who moved over from linebacker and is now the No. 3 fullback in the country.

Wide receivers
Notable Riser: Nate Brown, Suwanee (Ga.) North Gwinnett (Unranked to No. 49)
Notable dropper: Myles Autry, Norcross (Ga.) (No. 13 to No. 41)
Comments: Brown was the offensive skill MVP at the Rivals Camp in Charlotte and narrowly missed making it as a four-star this cycle, coming in at No. 49. Autry on the other hand continues to recover from a serious knee injury, and slipped from his perch among the top players at the position. Other movers outside of the 250 included Indianapolis (Ind.) Cathedral's Terry McLaurin debuting at No. 66, while Upland (Calif.) prospect Jeffery Farrar fell from No. 40 to No. 60.

Tight ends
Notable Riser: Xavier Burke, Lawrenceville (Va.) Brunswick (Unranked to No. 17)
Notable dropper: Bryce Dixon, Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure (No. 3 to No. 11)
Comments: Tight end was a position that saw several players move from other positions this cycle, including Kevin Crosby, who debuted at No. 12 after previously being ranked as an athlete. Outside of the Rivals250 players at the position, nobody took a drastic drop. A trio of players, Kentucky commit Darryl Long (No. 23), Cole Cook (No. 26) and Matt Nelson (No. 30), all debuted in the rankings as well.

Offensive tackles
Notable Riser: Andrew Marshall, Milford (Del.) (Unranked to No. 31)
Notable dropper: Brock Ruble, Hyattsville (Md.) DeMatha (No. 27 to No. 39)
Comments: Several players made moves at the position, including a pair of new five-stars Damian Prince, pictured, and Quenton Nelson. Among the movers outside of the 250, Oregon commit Tyrell Crosby entered the rankings at No. 33 after a strong showing at the RCS Phoenix stop, while Josh Krok was rewarded as the No. 36 player after a strong spring as well. Other sliders outside of Ruble included Andrew Mike, who dropped from No. 34 from No. 21.

Offensive guards
Notable Riser: Alex Dalton, Troy (Ohio) (Debuted at No. 13)
Notable dropper: D.J. Foster, Lincoln (Neb.) (No. 10 to No. 14)
Comments: Movement at the top was highlight by RCS Atlanta O-Line MVP Isaiah Wynn jumping from No. 11 to No. 2 at the position. Other players with their stock on the rise include Florida State commit Alec Eberle, who went from unranked to No. 17, and Nathaniel Devers, who parlayed a strong showing at RCS Pittsburgh into a two-spot jump from No. 22 to No. 20. Homewood (Ala.) prospect Jordan Sims was among the big droppers, falling from No. 14 out of the rankings.

Centers
Notable Riser: Joshua Casher, Mobile (Ala.) St. Paul's (No. 2 to No. 1)
Notable dropper: Trenton Noller, Windsor (Colo.) (No. 1 to unranked)
Comments: The position was turned upside down by Casher's dominant spring, as he moved from a three-star all the way into the Rivals250. Noller was the only big dropper, with J.C. Hassenauer and Connor Dintino entering at No. 6 and No. 9, respectively, after previously being unranked at the position.

Weakside defensive ends
Notable Riser: Terry Ramsey, Clayton (Ohio) Northmont (From unranked to No. 22)
Notable dropper: Denzel Ware, Crestview (Fla.) Crestview (From No. 14 to No. 15)
Comments: There wasn't a lot of movement at the position and the nation's No. 5 prospect, Lorenzo Carter, continues to hold down the No. 1 spot. Ramsey made a big leap after a strong camp season, while Ware lost his fourth star but only slipped one spot at his position. Two other players, Rohan Blackwood and Isaiah Nacua both entered the rankings at No. 24 and No. 25, respectively.

Strongside defensive ends
Notable Riser: Matt Dickerson, San Mateo (Calif) Junipero Serra (From unranked to No. 17)
Notable dropper: None
Comments: It was all about forward momentum at this position, with RCS Birmingham defensive line MVP Breeland Speaks, pictured, making a big leap from No. 24 to No. 13 overall. The same went for Atlanta d-line MVP Justin Jones, who came from outside the rankings to debut at No. 12. Other newcomers included Boston College commit Harold Landry at No. 20 and Mick Stoltenberg at No. 27.

Inside linebackers
Notable riser: Chandler Leniu, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco (From No. 24 to No. 18)
Notable dropper: None
Comments: This inside linebacker position was highlighted by Raekwon McMillan regaining his fifth star and Shaun Dion Hamilton moving from outside linebacker and debuting at No. 3. Also moving up into the rankings at No. 29 is Kansas State commit Sam Sizelove.

Outside linebackers
Notable riser: None
Notable dropper: Chris Register, Greensboro (N.C.) Dudley
Comments: There wasn't a lot of movement at the position and outside of a few new four-stars and Register's slip, the top 30 players remained almost the same. A few new prospects entered near the bottom of the rankings, including Jamal Davis, who debuted at No. 35.

Cornerbacks
Notable riser: Tim Cason, Clarkston (Mich.) (From unranked to No. 42)
Notable dropper: Darrion Johnson, Brenham (Texas) (From No. 8 to No. 29)
Comments: Cason was seemingly everywhere during the spring in an effort to improve his offer sheet and ranking and he did both with strong showings at multiple events. Joining him on the upward swing is Duke commit Alonzo Saxton, who moved from No. 44 to No. 36.

Safeties
Notable riser: Emmanuel Smith, Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Oakland (No. 37 to No. 29)
Notable dropper: Nick Glass, Suwannee (Ga) Peachtree Ridge (No. 23 to No. 37)
Comments: Three new four-stars were added at the position, including Vanderbilt commit Smith, who turned in a good showing at the RCS Atlanta stop. Glass was the only major dropper, while Greg Taylor came from unranked to land at No. 38.

Athletes
Notable riser: Derek Barnett, Brentwood (Tenn.) Brentwood Academy (From No. 30 to No. 16)
Notable dropper: E.J. Moss, Ashville (Ala.) (No. 24 to No. 28)
Comments: With many players being switched to other positions, there was plenty of room for movement among the athletes. Barnett benefitted from a strong camp season as did Jefferie Gibson, who jumped 14 spots to No. 33.

Kickers
Notable riser: None
Notable dropper: None
Comments: The kicker rankings debuted this cycle, with Virginia commit Gary Wunderlich, pictured, debuting as the nation's top prospect.



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