Rivals Rankings Week: Breaking down the 2024 ATHs

With the updated 2024 Rivals250 being unveiled this week, we next tackled the position rankings. The defensive position rankings are being released today, and we finish them off with the athletes.

NEW POSITION RANKINGS: Athlete | Cornerback | Safety | Inside linebacker | Outside linebacker | Strongside DE | Weakside DE | Defensive tackle | Offensive tackle | Offensive guard | Center | Tight end | Wide receiver | Running back | All-purpose RB | Pro-style QB | Dual-threat QB

MOVERS & SHAKERS

Terry Bussey

Terry Bussey (Rivals.com)

Terry Bussey is now the nation’s top athlete, earning his fifth star in the December update and there weren’t any arguments against the move. The explosive two-way talent made most of his plays at quarterback on Friday nights, but a wide receiver or secondary projection is most common as to where he may line up on Saturdays. Texas A&M earned his verbal commitment before its coaching change and now LSU, Texas and others are working to change his mind before National Signing Day. Bussey has enough natural gifts to truly project at multiple spots in college, so when he is able to settle at one for the first time, it may not take very long to make a true impact. …

After Bussey, the athlete projection who moved up the most in the current update was Boo Carter. The Tennessee commit continues to dominate competition at the prep level with a college-ready frame and game. He moved up nearly 20 spots, now sitting in the top 40 nationally as the second-highest ranked Volunteer commitment in the class behind five-star Mike Matthews. …

Kamron Mikell made his Rivals250 debut in this update, carrying the athlete tag as a true two-way projection out of the state of Georgia. The recent Colorado commitment sits as just one of seven ATH projections to make the updated Rivals250 ranks. Mikell had a dynamic 2023 season, using his 10.5-second 100-meter dash speed to gap defenses with the ball in his hands. In addition to a rock solid defensive resume, track and field and basketball make Mikell one of the busiest athletes in the class.

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TOP THREE ATH CLASSES

1. Arkansas: Sam Pittman‘s program is bringing in a versatile group of athletes to try and bounce back from a down 2023 campaign. Julius Pope is a blue-chipper standing as one of the best in Mississippi. He works at both running back and linebacker, but likely projects better on defense in the SEC, where his fast-flow mentality should play well against an always loaded group of backs in the conference. Four-star Jadan Baugh can do a bit of everything as a two-way talent, though his biggest impact looks to be on offense as a running back. In fact, Alabama is making a push to potentially flip him at the end of the cycle. Ahkari Johnson and Jeremy Cook look like future secondary players while CJ Brown looks to use his elite speed on offense at wide receiver and potentially in the return game.

2. South Carolina: Jalewis Solomon stands as one of Shane Beamer‘s biggest recruiting wins of the cycle. The Rivals250 prospect has legitimate college prospects in the secondary and at wide receiver, though the latter appears to be the growing expectation for his career in Columbia. Zy’Marion Lang is similar in stature and production on both sides of the ball, earning his fourth star following a strong junior campaign and adjoining offseason. Lang could be among the hidden gems of the SEC ranks going into his freshman campaign with his instincts with the ball in his hands.

3. Florida State: The ACC champs will bring in plenty of versatile talent as part of the No. 3 recruiting class nationally with BJ Gibson and Micahi Danzy standing as four-star recruits coming in from pipeline states Georgia and Florida, respectively. Gibson is a true athlete, playing quarterback, wideout and in the secondary in football while also sporting strong numbers on the baseball diamond, where he hit .472 as a junior. This fall, Gibson looked very comfortable at wide receiver, making easy plays at the catch point and proving tough to corral after the catch at nearly 200 pounds. Danzy is a pure blur on the football field or the track, where he holds a top-10 national time in the 400 meter dash. On Friday nights, he can gap a defense as both a runner, receiver and return man on a tall and slender frame.

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