Saturday , June 22 2024

Rivals Rankings Week: Breaking Down The New Rivals250 For 2025

The new Rivals250 for the 2025 class has been released and there are a lot of changes, with more coming through the summer evaluation period as well. Here are thoughts on each position from Rivals national recruiting director Adam Gorney.

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RIVALS RANKINGS WEEK

MONDAY: Who should be No. 1?

TUESDAY: Five-Star Countdown | Tavien St. Clair moved into five-star status

WEDNESDAY: New Rivals250 unveiled | Gorney goes position-by-position | Biggest risers

THURSDAY: New offensive position rankings released | QB rankings breakdown | RB rankings breakdown | WR/TE rankings breakdown | OL rankings breakdown

FRIDAY: New defensive position rankings released | DL rankings breakdown | LB rankings breakdown | DB rankings breakdown | ATH rankings breakdown

SATURDAY: New state rankings released | Who is No. 1 in each state?

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QUARTERBACK

Julian Lewis

Julian Lewis (Nick Lucero/Rivals.com)

USC commit Julian Lewis, who is being pursued heaviest by Auburn and Colorado, remains the No. 1 prospect in the 2025 Rivals250 but the quarterback position has tightened up as LSU pledge Bryce Underwood and Ohio State commit Tavien St. Clair had more of a national profile in recent months. Both could push for that No. 1 spot.

Lewis has done nothing to lose that top position but Underwood or St. Clair might just be so special that they overtake him at some point. Lewis and St. Clair will be at the Rivals Five-Star this summer and that will be another important evaluation point.

It will also be interesting to see current SMU commit Keelon Russell, who’s being heavily pursued by Alabama, at the Rivals Five-Star because he definitely has five-star potential as well and reminds me of Jayden Daniels. As for other potential five-star bumps, I’m just not seeing it in this class yet.

New UCLA commit Madden Iamaleava has moved up to second in the dual-threat rankings and if he has a senior season like his junior one he could move even higher. The Bruins got a major steal in their backyard as Iamaleava stars at Downey (Calif.) Warren.

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RUNNING BACK

Jordon Davison

Jordon Davison (Nick Lucero/Rivals.com)

LSU commit Harlem Berry took over the top spot at running back as his offseason has been phenomenal showing off elite playmaking skills and pass-catching ability out of the backfield as well. The word is he’s been compared with Reggie Bush and while a comp like that might be a little hyperbolic, Berry does have that make-you-miss ability to move the ball downfield very quickly.

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Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei’s Jordon Davison stayed a five-star but he’ll need a big showing at the Rivals Five-Star and into his senior season. It’s really just a positional value argument and in previous years we’ve over-ranked running backs and came to regret it so that is part of the rankings calculus here.

Penn State commit Alvin Henderson, who’s being heartily pushed by Auburn and Florida State, is also one to watch because his high school numbers are just insane. All three will be at the Rivals Five-Star along with Clemson commit Gideon Davidson and others in what should be a really important evaluation moment.

Ousmane Kromah is another one to watch but he doesn’t show up to many events or talk much so wherever he lands it could be a quiet steal.

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WIDE RECEIVER

Dakorien Moore

Dakorien Moore (Nick Lucero/Rivals.com)

My feeling at wide receiver is that five-star Dakorien Moore is way ahead of the others and it’s going to be very surprising if he comes off the top line. That’s no guarantee and everyone else has a real shot but the Duncanville, Texas, standout has been so good and so dominant this offseason that it would take a lot.

Winston Watkins Jr. is the other five-star in the class right now but others will be pushing. I have my eye on Jaime Ffrench, Dallas Wilson, Vernell Brown and some others. I wish Ackerman (Miss.) Choctaw County’s Caleb Cunningham would show up at some elite events so we can gauge him against national competition.

Last recruiting cycle, we finished with five five-star receivers and conversations on at least two others. I don’t think this group is as loaded on the high end but it does have good depth.

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TIGHT END

Kiotti Armstrong

Kiotti Armstrong (Nick Harris)

This is an excellent tight end class. I’m not totally certain there is a five-star in the group because we need to see more of Georgia commit Elyiss Williams in person along with more from Linkon Cure, Kiotti Armstrong and others, but there is a lot of great-looking players and a ton of depth.

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Brock Bowers was the only tight end taken in the first round in April’s NFL Draft and he’s one of the best at the position in recent memory. There might be less value in this position for the pros but this group is loaded. My guess is that it’s a battle between Williams and Cure until the end to see who ends up No. 1.

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OFFENSIVE LINE

Douglas Utu

Douglas Utu (Nick Lucero/Rivals.com)

There are four five-star offensive tackles in the 2025 class in David Sanders Jr., Douglas Utu, Michael Fasusi and Carter Lowe and then another one in offensive guard Solomon Thomas so this is a loaded group with a lot of star power at the top.

There could be others. Notre Dame commits Will Black and Owen Strebig are definitely impressive prospects and Strebig will be at the Rivals Five-Star. I want to see more of four-star Andrew Babalola in person and it will be crucial to see him more in person. There are others who are also intriguing, including Michigan commit Avery Gach, Missouri pledge Jack Lange and others.

It’s going to be really tough to move Thomas off the top line at offensive guard but there is some good depth there and Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman’s Alai Kalaniuvalu could move even higher. Gorman teammate SJ Alofaituli is clearly the best center in the class.

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DEFENSIVE LINE

Elijah Griffin

Elijah Griffin (Rivals.com)

Defensive tackle is the best of these three positions and we’re still working through the defensive end spots as no one has clearly, unequivocally, stepped up and demanded to be No. 1 there. Inside, five-star Georgia prospects Justus Terry and Elijah Griffin are phenomenal and then it’s a race to see who can fill out the top five.

At weakside defensive end, Florida State commit Javion Hilson leads the way and he has five-star potential. Ohio State pledge Zahir Mathis is not far behind and then someone to watch could be Buckeyes lean Justin Hill, who has had some impressive performances this offseason.

On the other side, Illinois four-stars Nathaniel Marshall and Christopher Burgess Jr. lead the way but Texas commit Lance Jackson is really intriguing. I wish we’d see Iose Epenesa do some national events as well.

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LINEBACKER

Riley Pettijohn

Riley Pettijohn (Cole Patterson/Rivals.com)

There are no five-star linebackers yet but that could be changing through the summer and definitely into the season. Again, there was only one linebacker taken in the first round of the NFL Draft and Alabama’s Dallas Turner might even be more of an edge rusher so it’s something of a devalued position but there is a lot of talent here.

The best could be McKinney, Texas, standout Riley Pettijohn but Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy’s Nathaniel Owusu-Boateng is right there and we’d love to see more of Ellaville (Ga.) Schley County’s Zayden Walker in person because he doesn’t do many national events. The one to watch who could keep moving up is Alabama commit Luke Metz as Georgia is especially trying to flip him.

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DEFENSIVE BACK

Devin Sanchez

Devin Sanchez (Nick Lucero/Rivals.com)

There is some concern about the size of the cornerbacks at the top since the NFL has preferred smaller, more bulldog-type corners higher up but five-stars Devin Sanchez and Na’eem Offord definitely don’t lack for size. Still, many of the top cornerbacks in the pros are taller and we think both Sanchez and Offord have a real shot to be special over the long term.

They’re not the only ones. Four-star Dijon Lee Jr. will be in the five-star discussion and we could see a ton of movement in the position rankings as the all-star games get closer.

This is a loaded safety class and for numerous reasons. Five-star Jonah Williams leads the way (he might end up a linebacker before it’s all said and done) but Trey McNutt has had an incredible offseason, Tae Harris is already in the 4.3s in the 40-yard dash and then Hylton Stubbs has shown how rangy he can be at numerous events. Safety is not a primo position in the NFL but this is a loaded crop.

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