Under the direction of seasoned head coach Greg Schiano, Rutgers University has come out with a fairly sizable recruiting class that hopes to provide more offensive targets, quarterback protection and a variety of pass rushing options. Local recruit Khayri Banton stands out among the rest, as he is projected to immediately impact the Rutgers defense with his physical yet refined style of play and versatile skillset.
14 of the current Scarlet Knight verbal commitments in the class were named candidates for the 2020 Sports Illustrated All-America team of high school senior football players.
4 prep prospects uncommitted or committed to other programs with Rutgers still under consideration were also named SIAA candidates.
Listed below is the full breakdown of RU verbals and prime targets on the SI All-American watch list.
WR Brayden Fox/6-3, 200/Akron, Ohio
WR Carnell Davis/6-1, 170/Richland, N.J.
WR Max Patterson/5-11, 165/Arlington, Va.
OT Kevin Toth Jr./6-6, 270/Hudson, Ohio
OT Tyler Needham/6-4, 265/Philadelphia, Pa.
CB Alijah Clark/6-2, 180/Camden, N.J.
CB Steffan Johnson/6-0, 160/Venice, Fla.
DE Cam’Ron Stewart/6-4, 225/Reading, Pa.
DE Henry Hughes/6-5, 228/Tampa, Fla.
DE Jordan Thompson/6-3, 225/Morris Plains, N.J.
DE Keshon Griffin/6-4, 220/Hammonton, N.J.
DT Gus Zilinskas/6-3, 263/Cherry Creek, Colo.
ILB Austin Dean/6-2, 215/Tampa, Fla.
OLB Khayri Banton/6-2, 220/Newark, N.J.
RB Audric Estime/6-1, 215/Montvale, N.J.
DE Ryan Keeler/6-5, 240/La Grange Park, Ill.
DT Tywone Malone/6-3.5, 300/Oradell, N.J.
OLB James Wilborn Jr./6-3, 235/Avon, Conn.
More than 1,000 student-athletes, representing every state in the country, are SI All-American candidates. Video highlights, scouting analyses and a list of each player’s college verbal commitment and/or top college contenders can be found on their bio pages, broken down by state, at SIAllAmerican.com.
Over the coming weeks, SI will unveil its preseason top 10 for each of 14 position groups (kicking off with quarterbacks this week). SI will unveil its initial top 99 ranking, the SI99, on August 24.
The evaluation process will continue throughout the season “until the list of 1,000 contenders coalesces around just 25 young men who can say proudly they are the best of the best -- they are Sports Illustrated All-Americans,” said SI Director of Football Recruiting John Garcia, Jr.
The candidates will be narrowed to 250 in October and 99 in November, and will culminate with 25 first-team Sports Illustrated All-Americans saluted at SI’s annual Sportsperson of the Year banquet in New York in December.