New Additions to the SI All-American Candidate List

Edwin Weathersby II

SI All-American released its 2021 All-American Candidates list in the summer, with 1,000 prospects making the first cut. Each prospect was studied on film and received a written evaluation detailing their athleticism, skill set, potential and projected production value on a college roster. 

Today, the SI All-American staff announced the subsequent cut, taking down the first pool of 1,000 prospects to 250. However, with our staff always placing a heavy emphasis on on-field performance, as well as tape study and player development, not every prospect that made the 250-cut was in the initial 1,000. 

As we tracked dominant performances this fall, new prospects emerged and were added to our board after further tape study, production and evaluations.

Below are the 12 new SI All-American candidates.

QB Jaxson Dart

Dart capped off an exceptional senior season at Draper (Utah) Corner Canyon by winning a state championship. He led the country in passing with 4,691 yards and 67 touchdowns, completing nearly 70% of his passes. There’s not been a hotter player and prospect in the country this fall than Dart, who has received offers from USC, UCLA, TCU, Iowa State and Washington State since September. At 6-foot-3 and 210 pounds, the Utah native combines smooth movement skills, mental processing and a consistent stroke to work as a natural ball-distributor from the quarterback position. Our staff has kept a collective of keen eyes on Dart’s performance this season, and it would not be surprising if he made the SI All-American team.

QB Bryce Drummond

Hailing from Pawhuska (Okla.), Drummond is a 6-foot-3, 205-pound quarterback who has firmly earned a place in the 250. He had a fantastic senior campaign that saw him finish with 3,186 yards passing, 50 TDs and jaw-dropping 74.1% completion percentage. Perhaps more impressively, is the fact the North Texas commit only threw 4 interceptions. Drummond has solid release quickness and a compact stroke that sees him deliver crisp balls with proper touch and trajectory. He projects as a future starter for the Mean Green.

RB Brendon Barrow

Built for the modern age at the position, we loved Barrow’s junior tape. Some prospects lean speed over quickness while others flip that script, but the Canada native has elite traits in both departments. The acceleration and deceleration skill is elite, leading to make-em-miss elusiveness in the smallest of windows despite the ability to run by most assigned to track him down. Barrow spends a chunk of his time on Friday nights lined up out wide or in the slot, with steady hands and better route construction than some Power Five receiver prospects to boot. The lack of bell-cow experience at the running back position was a concern coming into this fall, but Barrow became the focal point of the entire Clearwater, (Fla.) Clearwater Academy International offense and exhibited impressive toughness and also better run strength than we anticipated. He’s committed to Stanford.

RB Marquis Crosby

Crosby runs in an offense at Hattiesburg (Miss.) Presbyterian Christian that has a foundation of gap-scheme rushing attack. It features single and double-lead concepts with fullback-TE hybrids that often allows him to reach the edges of the box, with nearly no misdirection. Crosby also runs with noted decisiveness to work off blocks and make reactionary cuts. He has solid run instincts and vision traits, and operates with a somewhat quicker than fast style, where he routinely slashed and darted. Although he lacks elite size at 5-foot-9 and 170 pounds, the Louisiana Tech commit impresses with surprising contact balance. Upon clearing the second level on the edges, the solid long speed in the open field. He finished his historic senior season with 3,678 yards rushing and 34 TDs, averaging nearly 283 yards rushing a game.

RB Sean Jackson

At 5-foot-9 and 215 pounds, Jackson is a load for Trussville (Ala.) Hewitt-Trussville. He totaled more than 1,400 total yards out of the backfield, scoring 14 touchdowns this fall. Jackson isn’t flashy or possessive of sudden traits, yet he has good mental processing, run instincts and vision. He runs well behind his pads with good contact balance. In fact, a good chunk of Jackson’s yardage came after contact on the first and second levels of the defense. However, Jackson also is a threat in the passing game, as he is capable of working up the seams against linebackers and has some natural ability at catch points. He has an offer from Alabama-Birmingham.

WR Ari Allen

It’s not easy finding a niche at Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy. The roster is full of elite college prospects year in and year out, and there’s only one football and so many minutes in a football game. However, like nature in Jurassic Park, Allen found a way. He led IMG in receptions and helped the Ascenders win a de facto national title. At 5-foot-7 and just about 170 pounds, Allen is not going to wow anyone on the hoof. Yet, he’s an athletic pass-catcher who can be a nightmare for flat defenders from the slot on choices, options and 2-way go’s. Allen, who also doubles as a high-end lacrosse player, has offers from Austin Peay and The Citadel in football and a who's who list in lax -- including powers Syracuse and Ohio State.

RB Trent Davis

Lining up for Attalla (Ala.) Etowah, Davis had to follow up a junior season that saw him finish with 1,400 yards rushing and 19 total TDs. As a senior in seven games, he tallied nearly 1100 total yards and had 14 TDs. At 5-foot-10 and 170 pounds, Davis has good quickness and agility to threaten defenses in both the run and pass game. In fact, our staff was hesitant to list Davis as a running back on this list after seeing him at a camp impress observers as a potential slot receiver prospect. Davis is headed to Duke to play for offensive-minded head coach David Cutcliffe, who surely will deploy him in many ways in the Blue Devils’ offense.

OT Albert Reese

Originally from Canada, Reese is 6-foot-7 and more than 300 pounds and possesses an impressive frame on the hoof. He has solid movement skills and produces at the point with strength and sustainability. Seeing him live and up close several times this season lining up for Clearwater, (Fla.) Clearwater Academy International also answered some questions, as he played nasty and with a mean streak to display grit, confidence and toughness. He’s still developing nuances of his game, and it may prove difficult for Rutgers to hang on to his commitment, as Oklahoma State and Ole Miss are among those hot on his trail. The Canadian has potential to play left or right tackle in college.

EDGE Brayden Wood

Wood has been on our radar since his freshman year and he’s developed into the type of defensive lineman we initially envisioned -- tough, strong, stout against the run and possessive of an elite motor. While the season for Boulder (Colo.) Fairview was shortened to just six games, Wood finished his senior campaign with 51 total tackles and 14 TFLs, and chipped in 3 sacks, while also being a team captain. He leaves the Rocky Mountains with 285 career tackles, which is impressive when you consider he’s a defensive trench-man, not a linebacker. Listed as an EDGE, the 6-foot-3, 270-pounder could very well be on track to developing into a high-end 3-technique and/or 4i at Kansas State, where he plans to enroll early in January.

IDL Desmond Mamudi 

Mamudi had 85 tackles and 5.5 sacks as a junior, but turned up the heat as a senior for Tampa, (Fla.) Carrollwood Day, notching 13 sacks and adding 38 stops in just eight games. With his thick frame at 6-foot-3 and 290 pounds, Mamudi has good strength at the point. He also can finish as an interior pass-rusher after surprising interior offensive linemen with snap quickness. A South Florida commit, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Mamudi work as a 0, 1, 4i or 5 technique in various alignments. He also saw his recruitment take an interesting turn recently due to an offer from Virginia Tech. 

DB/LB Braelon Allen

Allen can play safety in certain schemes, yet likely will find his impact best felt on the second level as an off-ball linebacker at Wisconsin. He’s a physical specimen and weight-room stud who can clean 405 pounds, which is impressive to say the least. Allen’s play strength, motor and toughness are showcased routinely on the field, as he makes his presence felt at collision points consistently for Fond Du Lac (Wis.). Standing 6-foot-2 and weighing north of 210 pounds, Allen fits the mold of a traditional defensive prospect headed to Madison to play for defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard. High school ball-carriers around Wisconsin are glad he’s off to the Big Ten now.

DB Garner Wallace

Wallace did a myriad of things for Pickerington (Ohio) Central this fall, including play quarterback. He completed 68.3% of his passes in eight games, and also rushed for more than 400 yards and 5 TDs. Some see his 6-foot-5, 180-pound frame and see a potential wide receiver prospect. However, Northwestern head coach Pat Fitzgerald sees a potential safety who can use his long stride to eat grass and length to be disruptive at catch points for the Wildcats. Wallace certainly will be among the tallest defensive backs in the Big Ten once he inks his NLI in December to play in Evanston.

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