The race to National Signing Day has begun. Sports Illustrated and Scout.com have partnered to provide complete coverage of college football recruiting. Follow along daily with conference-by-conference recruiting shows featuring analysis, breaking news, prospect breakdowns and much more all leading up to Signing Day on Feb. 3.
National Recruiting Analyst Brian Dohn joins the Scout Recruiting Show to talk ACC recruiting. Topics include No. 1 player Rashan Gary, loads of commitments, a big recruiting weekend at Louisville and five-star visitors to Florida State.
Khaleke Hudson, ATH, McKeesport (Pa.) High, uncommitted
Khaleke Hudson returned from his official visit to Penn State ready to make his decision. He will announce Wednesday (time to be determined) and the question is whether nearby Pittsburgh can make a late move. He was slated to visit Pittsburgh on Jan. 29, but it remains to be seen if that happens. He made a December visit to UCLA, and the last two weekends were spent at Michigan and Penn State. At this point, it looks like the Big Ten for Hudson, but which Big Ten school remains uncertain.
Hudson is being recruited as an athlete by each of the schools. Many talk to him first about playing safety, or moving down to play linebacker in certain packages, but he is also a very good running back and programs are saying he could play on both sides of the ball.
Even if Hudson does not pick Pittsburgh, expect a strong push from the Panthers leading up to signing day since he is so close to campus.
Recruit of the week
Rashan Gary, DT, Paramus (N.J.) Catholic, uncommitted
Rashan Gary, the No. 1 player in the nation, is deciding on his final official visit destination, and Clemson is in the running for it. Gary spent last weekend at Michigan on an unofficial visit, and he already made officials to Michigan, USC, Mississippi and Auburn. He is also contemplating an Alabama visit this weekend, but will decide on the destination Tuesday night.
USC is making a strong push and will visit him Wednesday before he and his mom leave town for an award presentation on Thursday. After that, it will be on to the fifth official visit.
Michigan remains the team to beat, and his best friend, Michael Dwumfour, just changed his commitment from Penn State to Michigan. Gary also has friends Kareem Walker, Ahmir Mitchell, Juwan Bushell-Beatty and Jabrill Peppers, all New Jersey products, at Michigan, where his former high school coach, Chris Partridge is on staff.
Commitment of the week
Patrice Rene, CB, Alexandria (Va.) Episcopal, committed to North Carolina
It looked like it would happen for a while, and within the span of day, Patrice Rene decommitted from Rutgers and committed to North Carolina. Rene was also considering Wisconsin, but the campus, academics and the style of defense won out for the Tar Heels.
In Rene, North Carolina is getting a versatile defensive back who can play safety and cornerback. The Tar Heels like long, physical corners, and Rene fits the profile well. He can jam at the line of scrimmage, and he loves to be physical. He has the speed to turn and run with the receiver, but he needs to become a bit more fluid in and out of breaks against receivers.
The reason Scout rates him as a safety is because of his high ceiling there. He has the speed to cover outside of the hashmarks, and he possesses good ball skills. When asked to, he is comfortable defending in the running game as well.
Underclassman of the week
Elijah Conliffe, DE, Hampton (Va.) High, uncommitted (2017)
Elijah Conliffe had a great junior campaign and was named Peninsula District Defensive Player of the Year by the Hampton Roads Daily Press. His scholarship total has reached double digits, with the latest two coming from Maryland and Penn State.
According to Conliffe, NC State and Tennessee are pursuing him the hardest.
His most recent visit was to Maryland for their game against Indiana, and the trip went well. As for upcoming visits, North Carolina, Notre Dame and Tennessee are all on his list, but nothing is yet set.
Although he doesn't have a date for his decision, Conliffe plans to narrow his list of schools to five or seven by August, and he said Tennessee and NC State will definitely make the cut.
Prospect on the rise
Tyree Rodgers, ATH, Camden Catholic, committed to Old Dominion
Everything was moving along easily for Tyree Rodgers, a versatile athlete committed to Old Dominion to play quarterback. Then, the new Rutgers staff came in and offered Rodgers as a cornerback, and Virginia Tech offered as well.
So, what does Rodgers do?
He remains committed to Old Dominion, but he is taking a hard look at the Hokies and Scarlet Knights, and both are pushing for official visits the final weekend of the visit season. At this point, Rodgers looks like he will visit Rutgers and he is a prime candidate to flip to the Scarlet Knights, who like his length and ability to jam at the line of scrimmage. They believe he is a perfect fit for new coach Chris Ash's defensive scheme.
Meanwhile, Virginia Tech continues to push for a visit, and if the one to Rutgers falls through, don't be surprised to see Rodgers at Virginia Tech.