The Defensive Line MVP was sensational from start to finish and the big rankings bump he got after the spring may need to be revisited again after this performance. Bogle’s quickness and fundamentals are excellent, but what really impressed was how strong he was at the point of attack for a long, lanky defensive end.
Clay came into the event ranked outside the Rivals250, but made a strong case to get back into that ranking with his play in Atlanta. At times he kicked inside and showed the strength and toughness to battle with interior offensive linemen, while also possessing the quick-twitch explosiveness to be effective on the outside.
Similar to Bogle, Isaac is a long, lanky defensive end who was held up surprisingly well at the point of attack against offensive tackles that many times had 75 pounds or more on him. The Brooklyn native ranked just outside the top 200 in the country coming into the event, but was among the most effective defensive ends in Atlanta.
If we gave out an MVP for the first half of the day, McCollum very well may have been the winner. When it comes to explosiveness, there was no one in his zip code. He did not fare as well in the Big Man Challenge portion of the event, but overall we saw a lot that impressed us from a prospect who came into the event outside the Rivals250.
Southeast analyst Chad Simmons projected Murphy as one of the surprise stars before the week started, and he was correct. The 2020 prospect was one of the top overall performers out of the entire defensive line group, already creating an outstanding physical presence and displaying an impressive combination of size, strength and athleticism.
Briggs jumped back into the Rivals100 after the spring evaluation period, and cemented that standing with his play in Atlanta. The Virginia commit is short for defensive tackle standards, but has been able to turn that into an advantage by combining it with his strength to maximize leverage. Briggs was in the discussion for position MVP honors late in the day.
Cheney was the only three-star defensive lineman and the Alabama commit did look a tier below the rest of the talent in attendance. His size/athleticism combination is solid, but not to the level of the top guys in Atlanta and he struggled to win reps throughout the day. We did like his competitiveness, however, and willingness to keep getting after it.
Dorbah’s stock remains steady coming out of the Five-Star Challenge in large part because he did not do much during the course of the event. We did see him rep, but not enough to get a strong evaluation of him as he ended up in sweat pants, walking around for parts of the day with what was apparently a slight injury of some sort.
Herron’s performances in these types of events can take on a rollercoaster type feel. We have seen it in the past, and that was the case again in Atlanta. This time he started quick, winning reps with ease early in the day before running into trouble later. The Michigan commit has a lot of heart and is a competitor who does not like to lose.
There was a long discussion in the rankings meetings for the first Rivals100 of the 2020 class about whether or not Jackson should start out as a five-star. In the end he those in favor of five-stars won out, and after the rising junior’s performance in Atlanta the discussion is probably dead. He lacks ideal height, but the rest of his game is on target.
From a physical standpoint McLendon doesn’t jump off the field at you, but then there were a lot of freaky-athletic looking types at the Five-Star Challenge so it is tough to stand out in that setting. The Florida State commit did have a “wow” moment, though, when he got Rivals100 offensive tackle Amari Kight off balance on a rep and knocked him on his backside.
Stripling came into Five-Star Challenge already ranked in the Rivals100, and he lived up to that billing. There is nothing flashy about the way the Houston native goes about his business, but he just wins reps. Stripling showed plenty of quickness, plenty of strength and effectively employed a variety of pass rush moves to beat offensive linemen.
Weaver was another prospect who got nicked up early in the day and sat out the majority of the event, so there his stock stays steady due to not enough material to add to his overall evaluation. The Kentucky native is impressive-looking on the hoof with an excellent frame for a defensive end, although we knew that about him coming.
Physically Capehart looks like an older version of Myles Murphy with outstanding size for the position. Athletically he brings many of the same traits to the table, but he did not deploy them as effectively. Capehart noticeably got discouraged when he lost a rep and that tended to snowball and further neutralize his effectiveness.
Ojulari was one of the underclassmen at the event, but while 2020 prospects like McKinley Jackson and Myles Murphy not only competed well, but excelled, Ojulari was largely overmatched for most of the day. A year from now he should be bigger and strong and playing with more confidence, but he is not there yet.
There were several long, lean defensive ends at this year’s event, but whereas players like Khris Bogle and Adisa Isaac showed the strength to compete with the top offensive tackles, Summerall struggled at the point of attack. The good news is he has the frame to add more weight and strength, and he will need it before he can contribute at the next level.