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Top 20 High School Football Recruits Who Will Struggle in College

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20 High School Football Recruits Who Will Struggle in College


For as many college football success stories as there are, many recruits also don’t pan out at the next level for whatever reason. The college game is not for the faint of heart and some are just not cut out for it. This list will look at some of the upcoming football recruiting class of 2013 and see if we can recognize some players who might struggle for a time at the college level.

You will see a lot of big time programs on here, because sometimes when a team has an abundance of talent some players get less playing time. There are also a lot of undersized guys on this list, because it is a tough adjustment from playing against high school level athletes to the next tier. If a player is coming into a program that already has a starter at their position, then usually they will have to wait a year or two to get a true shot.

These picks are my opinion based on the highlight reels and clippings I’ve seen about each recruit and what I know of the college situation they are entering. I wish each of these young men the best of luck at the college level and I hope I’m wrong about every single one of them.

Disagree with one of my selections? Feel free to rant your comment below or get in touch with me at my twitter handle @AllDave_AllDay.

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20. Dewayne Hendrix- LB Tennessee:

Randy Sartin- USA TODAY Sports

The linebacker out of Illinois will be joining the Tennessee Volunteers, and they will most likely be relying on him right away. With his youth will he be ready to be relied upon at the next level? Have my questions, but the answers will come in time.

Thanks so much for reading and stop by Rant Sports Prep or my pro basketball previews anytime!

Dave Daniels is a Senior Writer for Follow him on twitter: @AllDave_AllDay, like him on Facebook here or add him to your network on Google.

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19. Clayton Thorson- QB Northwestern:

Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports

The quarterback out of Wheaton North High School (IL) will most likely not play much next year so it is kind of an obvious pick, but if he sees game time then it might be a struggle for him. There are a lot of quality quarterbacks in the conference and just question whether Thorson has the size at 195 pounds to withstand the beating of an entire season. Hopefully he is not relied upon to play next season and can continue to hit the weightroom.

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18. Artavis Scott-WR Clemson:

Paul Abell- USA TODAY Sports

Scott is the 25th ranked wide receiver according to Scout, and he seems to love making huge plays. This is counteracted by inconsistency with easy catches. My questions about his success at the college level come mainly because of depth. Once he sees the field he will make plays, but just do not know how often he will be playing next season for the Clemson Tigers.

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17. Bentley Spain- OT North Carolina:

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

This one is mainly about the situation. Spain is a quality player who played in the Army All American game. By Spain's sophomore and junior year he will be holding it down on the offensive line, but his freshman will year will have a learning curve to it. Should be interesting to see if he redshirts or if he dives right into the fire. The ACC is going through a mini-renaissance right now and just think the upperclassmen will try to take advantage while they can.

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16. Drew Barker- QB Kentucky: 

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Kudos to this young man for graduating high school early and he will be in Kentucky in January. “This is a great start to our 2014 recruiting class,” said head coach Mark Stoops to Scout. “They will benefit from enrolling in January. " Barker is only on this list only because the Wildcats are in the SEC and defenses there are quite happy to face a freshman even if he is talented. Should be a learning curve of about a year for Barker before he is ready to make noise with the Wildcats.

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15. Austin Ramesh- FB Wisconsin:

US PRESSWIRE- Mary Langenfield

Ramesh doesn’t quite have the size for fullback at 221 lbs and will need to hit the weights. Wisconsin was by far the best school to offer him a scholarship and I’m wondering if he is cut out for a big time program like Wisconsin.

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14. Cooper Bateman- QB Alabama:

US PRESSWIRE-Kelly Lambert

Bateman has a gun slinger’s arm, but I question whether he has the athletic ability to keep from getting pounded by the fast and strong SEC.

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13. Maurice Smith- CB Alabama:

US PRESSWIRE-Daniel Shirey

Smith will likely be buried on this Alabama team next year and we might have to wait until we can see what he can do. He needs to improve his backpedal speed to keep up with receivers and that will determine whether he succeeds at Alabama or not.

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12. Alex Anzalone- OLB Notre Dame:

US PRESSWIRE- Matt Cashore

Anzalone is another player who will struggle, because the top ranked OLB, Jaylon Smith, in the class is also going to Notre Dame. Notre Dame is super deep at linebacker and Anzalone could struggle because of it.

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11. Kohl Stewart- QB Texas A&M:


Stewart will have trouble finding any playing time in the foreseeable future. Johny “Football” Manziel is coming off a Heisman trophy year and will be around for at least another year and probably more.

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10. Dane Crane- C Washington:


Crane has my favorite rhyming name on this list. He has nice size at 295 pounds, but I wonder if he will have the backward mobility to help in Washington’s pass game. He should be effective in the running game, but I wonder if it will be enough.

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9. Jake Raulerson- OT Texas:


Raulerson is ranked below another future Longhorns Kent Perkins on, which leads me to believe he might struggle to see the field for the team next year. If he hits the weights he could prove me wrong, but I’ll have to see it first.

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8. Hunter Bivin- OT Notre Dame:

US PRESSWIRE- Brian Spurlock

Bivin is ranked 3rd out of all the OTs coming to Notre Dame next year. He may struggle to see the field at first and that could cause him to slip. We’ll see soon whether he will be joining the defending national champions or not.

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7. Chris Fox- OG Michigan:

US PRESSWIRE- Greg Bartman

Patrick Kugler is the top ranked OG in the class and is also going to Michigan. I could be wrong and Kugler and Fox could end up being a devastating one-two freshman punch at the guard position in Ann Arbor, but I see one of these two recruits losing playing time and it’s unfortunately going to be Fox.

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6. Isaiah Golden- DT Texas A&M:

US PRESSWIRE-Thomas Campbell

Golden needs to improve his technique; he can be explosive at the line, but he needs to work on his footwork to be footwork to get to the quarterback quicker.

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5. Kenny Hill- QB Texas A&M:

US PRESSWIRE-Thomas Campbell

Hill will have the same problem as Kohl Stewart playing behind Johnny Football. Stewart or Hill will likely get the nod after the Heisman winner leaves, but not until then.

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4. Kenny Bigelow- DT USC:


Bigelow’s agility makes him an excellent pass rusher, but he needs to improve his run defense to make an impact for the Trojans. He could put on a bit more weight to strike harder.

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3. Daniel McMillan- MLB Undecided:


McMillan doesn’t quite have the closing speed to be an elite MLB. He will have to be extremely fundamentally sound to be effective at the college level and that may take a couple years.

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2. Ty Isaac- RB USC:


Isaac is only on this list, because the number 1 ranked running back in the recruiting class is also going to USC, so Isaac might struggle to get carries his freshman year. He will need to improve his size and blocking ability to see the field his freshman year.

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1. Marcus Baugh- TE Ohio State:


Baugh has great athleticism which will serve him well next year, but he cannot play both ways as he did in high school and still be effective. If I’m wrong about any of these recruits it could be him.