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January 29, 2008

Rivals5: Super sleepers

Team Rankings Breakdown | Rivals5: State battles | Announcement Watch

Every year, several prospects come into college under the national radar and end up exceeding expectations.

Rivals.com recruiting analyst Barry Every breaks down five super sleepers in the 2008 class.

Rivals5: Super Sleepers
Bret Jefcoat, QB, Fulton (Miss.) Itawamba Agricultural (Louisiana Tech)
Don't be fooled by Jefcoat's pro-style quarterback label. He not only has great pocket presence, but has the ability to tuck the ball and run as he showed during his senior season running for 480 yards and 20 touchdowns. He also is a very competent punter and kicker as he displayed these talents at the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic practices. He then led the Mississippi squad to a 26-7 victory while passing for 81 yards and two touchdowns.

It is hard to believe that Ole Miss or Mississippi State have not offered this quarterback. He will be someone that has the ability to put up big numbers at Louisiana Tech with his arm or legs. Like most freshman quarterbacks, I expect him to redshirt next season then vie for the starting spot.

Jeff Brinson RB, St. Petersburg (Fla.) Northeast (Iowa)
Brinson has a great combination of size, speed and balance. He rushed for 1,906 yards and 24 touchdowns during his senior season and his combination of size and speed will help him excel in the Big Ten. If he can't get to the outside, he will run over defenders in his path.

Brinson's running ability should help open up the Iowa passing attack because opponents will have to bring defenders up to stop the run. It is hard to believe that the Florida schools allowed this kid to leave the state. Look for this talented tailback to play as a freshman.

Willie Bohannon, DE, Mobile (Ala.) Blount (Tennessee)
Bohannon is that hybrid defensive end/linebacker that a lot of schools are looking for. He has the athletic ability and speed to be a great pass rusher and the lateral agility to cover backs out in the flats. During his week at the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic he gained the reputation of being a headhunter.

Bohannon recently switched his commitment from Kentucky to Tennessee and I think the Vols got another instant impact defender from one of their fellow southern states. Look for Bohannon to start out on all the coverage teams, and have an opportunity to eventually move into the defensive lineup for the Vols as a true freshman.

Ricky Pemasa, LB, Orange (Calif.) Lutheran (Fresno State)
I have had the opportunity to watch Pemasa in three full games and I can only say that this kid is a football player. He is athletic enough to play running back at the D-I level, but prefers to roam sideline to sideline in search of the big hit. I truly believe that he can play in the Pac-10.

This two-way stud ran for 756 yards and 18 touchdowns while leading his team with 104 tackles and 14 sacks. Expect Pemasa to start on special teams and possibly work his way into the starting lineup for Fresno State as a true freshman.

Alfred Jenkins, WR, Jacksonville (Fla.) Terry Parker (Illinois)
This gifted athlete caught 41 passes for 515 yards and four touchdowns to go along with 251 yards rushing as a senior. Look for Jenkins to get playing time as a true freshman. He is very similar to Belle Glade (Fla.) Glades Central star and current Pittsburgh Steeler Santonio Holmes who had an outstanding career in the Big Ten with Ohio State. He has great body control and enough speed to take short passes and make them long gains or to just get deep.

Look for Jenkins to be the third receiver option for the Illini as a freshman. He should compliment Arrelious Benn and give Juice Williams another option to throw to in the spread offense.

Others considered: Mark Wedderburn, Philadelphia (Pa.) Cardinal O'Hara; Andrew Wallace, Charlotte (N.C.) Olympic; D'Antoine Hood Phenix City (Ala.) Central; Dorian Graham, Ft. Lauderdale (Fla.) St. Thomas Aquinas.



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