2024 signees primed to make an instant impact

On3 imageby:Charles Power02/07/24


The majority of top prospects in the 2024 cycle put pen to paper in the Early Signing Period, signing National Letters of Intent with college programs. Most of the remainder of unsigned top prospects inked their NLI’s on Wednesday. With players now locked into their college destinations, let’s take a look at some prospects we feel are best situated to make an instant impact on Saturdays next fall as true freshmen.

WR Jeremiah Smith – Ohio State

Jeremiah Smith‘s talent and skill level is such that he could come into any receiver room in the nation and likely push for time. The nation’s top-ranked wide receiver and No. 1 overall prospect in the On300 is one of the top pass-catchers to come through the high school ranks in recent memory. At 6-foot-3, 215 pounds, Smith has a game that is readymade for the next level. He has elite route-running ability at his size, effortlessly dropping his weight to get in and out of his breaks. A state champion hurdler, he’s a plus athlete for the position. The ball skills and ability after the catch also register on the high end. Smith also has posted gaudy production the past two season, culminating in a 90 catch, 1,389 yard, 19 touchdown senior campaign. The overall physical and skill package point to a high floor and high ceiling for the Five-Star Plus+ prospect. Ohio State will be looking to replace a potential top five pick at receiver in Marvin Harrison Jr. and Smith could help fill those big shoes. There’s a ton of blue-chip talent in Buckeyes’ receiver room, but none with the pedigree or talent of Smith. – Director of Scouting and Rankings Charles Power

WR Cam Coleman – Auburn

In an absolutely loaded wide receiver cycle, Cam Coleman has the case as the biggest freak of the bunch. At 6-foot-3.5, 185 pounds with 33.5-inch arms with elite combine and on-field athleticism, Coleman has the look of the most physically-gifted receiver in 2024 – that’s as a prospect with a late birthday who should technically be a 2025 prospect. We saw that talent manifest on the field as a senior with Coleman catching 61 passes for 1,372 yards and 18 touchdowns while leading his team to a state title in Alabama’s highest classification. Coleman’s able to take the top off of defenses, using his burst and long speed to easily separate downfield. The Five-Star Plus+ prospect also has arguably the largest catch radius of 2024 wide receivers as an absolute mismatch on jump balls due to his length, coordination and leaping ability. The one-time Texas A&M commit is the headliner in a stellar wide receiver class for Auburn – one that should provide an instant talent upgrade for Hugh Freeze’s offense. – Charles Power

CB Ellis Robinson IV – Georgia

Ellis Robinson IV has ranked as the top cornerback in the 2024 cycle for the past year. The IMG Academy product’s combination of length and ball skills gives him a projectable skill set as a boundary corner. His 32.75-inch arms allow for him to jam receivers at the line of scrimmage with ease We’ve seen him make plays on the football against just about any wide receiver that lines up across from him. Robinson’s ability to mirror is also on the high end. Those skills give the Five-Star Plus+ prospect the potential to come in and compete for playing time right away for any team in the country. Even though Georgia recruits at an elite level, they are susceptible to losing players to the transfer portal like any team in the current climate. The Bulldogs lost a handful of corners to the portal along with defensive back coach Fran Brown, who took the head coaching job at Syracuse. This will allow Robinson to walk into a situation with a defensive back coach – former Alabama assistant Travaris Robinson – who will be learning a new room filled with players starting a on a relatively level playing field. The New Haven, Connecticut native should have a tremendous opportunity to prove he belongs in the rotation for one of the top programs in college football. – Cody Bellaire

DL LJ McCray – Florida

Few prospects had a better senior season than LJ McCray. The 6-foot-6, 280-pounder made a leap as a player last fall, turning in a dominant season while leading his Daytona (Fla.) Mainland team to a state title. McCray’s senior film is among the best we watched from a defensive prospect this cycle. His ability to disrupt as a pass rusher and run defender makes him a versatile, dangerous player on the front. The combination of length, athleticism, physicality and effort stand out and point to an immediate impact at the college level. He has a high upside due to the projectable traits, but make no mistake, the top ten prospect is ready to come in and make an early impact. – Charles Power

WR Ryan Williams – Alabama

It’s not every day we see a 17 year-old make impactful plays in a college football game, but that could be the case next fall. The one-time top receiver prospect in the 2025 cycle, Ryan Williams made news in December, announcing his reclassification into 2024. The 6-foot-0.5, 165-pounder is the most dynamic deep threat in a loaded wide receiver group nationally. The back-to-back Mr. Football winner in the state of Alabama, Williams put together two years of elite production at Saraland (Ala.) High, totaling 70 touchdowns over the past two seasons. As the top receiver talent to sign with the Crimson Tide in several cycles and has the makings of a star within Kalen DeBoer’s scheme. – Charles Power

DL Justin Scott – Miami

Justin Scott is easily one of the more gifted jumbo athletes in the 2024 recruiting cycle. The dancing bear from Chicago is unbelievably light on his feet and moves like a much smaller player. When he isn’t wreaking havoc on opposing offenses as a defensive tackle or paving the way as an offensive lineman, he is carrying the ball as a running back. The big man ran for 121 yards and two touchdowns on 17 touches as a senior. With his multi-sport background in hockey, soccer and basketball, it comes to no surprise that Scott elite level athlete along the defensive line. Scott joins a Miami defense that played well in 2023. The Hurricanes finished in the top 30 in total defense and tied for 13th in the country in sacks. However, two big pieces of the puzzle for the Miami defense declared for the NFL Draft in Leonard Taylor and Branson Deen. Even though Miami secured a transfer commitment from CJ Clark (NC State) out of the transfer portal, Mario Cristobal has shown no hesitation in playing talented freshmen. It looks like Scott will be next in line to make an early impact in Coral Gables. – National Scout Cody Bellaire

WR Micah Hudson – Texas Tech

Micah Hudson is the first On3 Industry 5-star prospect to sign with Texas Tech in the internet recruiting era. If that talent level isn’t enough position Hudson for early targets, Texas Tech has also had six receivers enter the transfer portal so far this offseason. The Red Raiders have brought in some talented options at receiver like Caleb Douglas (Florida) and Josh Kelly (Washington State), but they will be coming to a new team and have to prove themselves to a new staff just like Micah Hudson. Make no mistake, Hudson is good enough to get on the field early in most situations. The dynamic ability with the ball in his hands and his hand strength at the catch point make the Temple (Texas) Lake Belton product one of the best receiver prospects in the cycle. He is able to high point the football and win 50-50 balls consistently even at 5-foot-11 due to his bounce. There’s a bunch of “wow” plays all over his highlight reel. Hudson finished his senior season with nearly 1,400 yards on 70 catches with 18 touchdown receptions. This is a caliber of player that has not worn the scarlet and black of Texas Tech since two-time Biletnikoff winner Michael Crabtree. Micah Hudson will land in Lubbock with those kinds of expectations the day he steps on campus and has the ability to meet or even exceed them. – Cody Bellaire

OT Jordan Seaton – Colorado

Jordan Seaton is the most polished offensive tackle in the 2024 cycle. His blend of size, power and athleticism make him one of the most ready-made prospects in the country. Standing at 6-foot-5, 300 pounds with a 34-inch arms, Seaton has prototypical physical traits that translate to the next level and beyond. This is a player that has the ability to compete for a starting job for almost any program in the country, let alone a Colorado team that gave up the most sacks of any Power 5 team in the country last season, and the second most sacks in the FBS. Colorado gave up an average of 4.5 sacks per game in 2023 and had 10 different offensive linemen start a game. This a team that needs an anchor along the offensive line literally and Seaton fits the bill to walk in and do that from day one. – Cody Bellaire

S Aaron Flowers – Oregon

Aaron Flowers had one of the stronger senior seasons among defensive back prospects in the 2024 cycle. The Forney (Texas) High product picked off seven passes last fall. Flowers proved to be a defensive weapon who can make plays at every level of the field. At Oregon, he could provide a boost that could would further strengthen Dan Lanning’s defense. The Ducks also lose their two starting safeties in Evan Williams and Steve Stephens IV to the NFL Draft as well as two rotational defensive backs in Trikweze Bridges and Daymon David being on their way out. There should more than enough snaps for the taking for Aaron Flowers. We could see Flowers potentially carving out a role for himself early on as a freshman and continue to see his snaps increase as the season rolls along. – Cody Bellaire

LB Myles Graham – Florida

Somewhat similar to his fellow Florida signee LJ McCray, Myles Graham was a stock up prospect coming on the heels of a strong senior season. The Gator legacy has a very well-rounded skill set as a modern day linebacker prospect. Graham is a natural in space and shows the ability to cover running backs and tight ends downfield. He showed very good range, using play speed to hawk down ball carriers from sideline-to-sideline. The ability to quickly diagnose plays also points to the potential for an early impact. While many linebackers need time to adjust to the demands of the position, Graham should have a smoother transition given his versatile skills. – Charles Power

CB Jon Mitchell – Penn State

Jon Mitchell‘s blend of natural athleticism and advanced technique makes him a top 100 prospect for On3. The ability to mirror and stay in phase is far ahead of the curve for a high school prospect and points to the potential of an early impact at Penn State. Given that Penn State has one of the nation’s best defenses, it seems unlikely that a freshman could walk in and potentially compete for a starting job next year. Given the cornerback talent and experience departing from State College, there is an avenue for Mitchell to potentially compete for a starting job as soon as he arrives on campus. – Cody Bellaire

QB Dylan Raiola – Nebraska

Dylan Raiola delivered one of the biggest surprises of the recruiting cycle back in December, with the one-time Georgia commit flipping to Nebraska shortly before the Early Signing Period. The Nebraska legacy represents a marquee recruiting win for Matt Rhule. In addition to being Nebraska’s clear quarterback of the future, Raiola may indeed be the Huskers’ quarterback of the present next fall. Raiola’s size, arm talent and ability to quickly pick up offensive schemes would put him in a position to compete for playing time regardless of the situation. With that said, Nebraska was heavily in the mix for Ohio State transfer Kyle McCord at one point, but McCord headed to Syracuse. The talent and quarterback situation at Nebraska put Raiola in position to earn the starting nod early in his career. – Charles Power

LB Kyngstonn Viliamu-Asa – Notre Dame

An experienced stalwart who played on a top high school defense against elite competition, Kyngstonn Viliamu-Asa is one of the most developed and polished linebackers in the 2024 cycle. Viliamu-Asa is a pure inside linebacker who played at a high level at Los Angeles-area powerhouse St. John Bosco. The 6-foot-2, 235-pounder is a highly instinctive defender who quickly triggers and seeks out contact as a run defender. It’s not always easy for linebackers to get on the field as true freshmen, but Viliamu-Asa’s level of polish and defined skill set could set him up for early playing time. Given the Irish will have to replace linebackers Marist Liufau and JD Bertrand next season, Viliamu-Asa could get on the field sooner rather than later. – Charles Power

RB Jordan Marshall – Michigan

Jordan Marshall is one of the most well-rounded running backs in the 2024 cycle. At 5-foot-11, 200 pounds, Marshall has the frame and overall skillset to come into a Power 5 program and take pivotal snaps from day one. Michigan will be looking to fill the void left by Blake Corum. There’s plenty of carries to go around as the Wolverines led the Power 5 in rushing touchdowns and was third in the Power 5 in total run plays. They are also 1 of 19 Power 5 teams who had two individual running backs carry the ball at least 100 times in the same season. Marshall has the opportunity to insert himself into an excellent situation and thrive very early on in his career. – Cody Bellaire

WR Justice Williams – Washington

Justice Williams is a On300 four-star outlier and looks to be one of the top receiver prospects on the West Coast. The big-bodied outside receiver has length and play speed for days. He’s a player that can stretch the field vertically while also presenting a reliable option over the middle of the field. With the way Washington threw the ball this year, Williams seems like an easy plug and play option for the Huskies the moment he arrives on campus, especially given that three of their top four receiving options from the 2023 season aren’t returning. Rome Odunze, the team’s leading receiver is one of the top NFL draft prospects in the country and is more than likely heading to the NFL. Ja’Lynn Polk stepped up and had a big season, generating his fair share of draft buzz. Jalen McMillan is a quality draft prospect in his own right. On top of that, Germie Bernard has since committed as a transfer to Alabama, following Kalen DeBoer to Tuscaloosa. With that said, Justice Williams has the potential to step into a role for this Washington offense in 2024. The his overall skill set fits in exactly with what the Huskies are looking to replace. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Williams earn targets as a true freshman. – Cody Bellaire

OL William Echoles – Ole Miss

William Echoles is a player whose stock steadily rose over the course of his senior season. The dominant two-way monster from Mississippi was a terror on both sides of the ball for Houston (Miss.) High. Sources at Ole Miss could see Echoles making an impact on either side of the ball as soon as he arrives on campus depending on how things shake out during the offseason. Taking a look at both fronts for Ole Miss, there are some areas that Echoles could put himself in position to compete early. Ole Miss will be looking to fill holes along the offensive line. On defense, the Rebels could also be looking to replace several key players who have yet to make decisions on their futures. Echoles has the potential to walk in and and carve out an immediate role on either side of the ball. We saw him play at a high level on both offense and defense at the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star practices and later at the All-American Bowl. If Echoles continues to ascend, he could land himself some significant snaps on either side of the ball in Oxford. – Cody Bellaire