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May 21, 2014

New four-stars outside the Rivals250

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The spring evaluation period is a valuable time for college coaches. It gives them an opportunity to hit the road and see several prospects in action. Often times, new offers are handing out and recruiting efforts are increased or decreased depending on how much a prospect has developed from the end of their season until the spring.

The same can be said for the Rivals.com team of evaluators, which spends the spring traveling to camps, combines and 7-on-7 events throughout the country. New players emerge, others cement their status and other players slip down the rankings. With the Rivals100 and Rivals250 Presented by Under Armour now officially unveiled, we take a closer look at some of the players who just missed the cut.

All in all, there are 75 players ranked as four-stars that didn't make the cut for the Rivals250, with 19 of them being new evaluations during the spring. The Rivals.com team of analysts shares their thoughts on the new additions and why they earned the bump up in stars.

FOUR-STAR PROSPECTS OUTSIDE RIVALS250
QB
Alex Malzone
Bloomfield Hills (Mich.) Brother Rice
Malzone has consistently upped his play over the last year, doing so again most recently at the RCS Detroit, where he brought home the quarterback MVP award. We already knew he had a strong arm and his team's state title last fall showed he has the intangibles as well. What Malzone showed at the Rivals Camp was pinpoint accuracy on his throws, showing he has taken ownership of his arm mechanics. College coaches were also impressed by his workout this spring, and he accepted an offer from Michigan in May. - Josh Helmholdt, Rivals.com Midwest Recruiting Analyst
QB
Lamar Jackson
Boynton Beach, Fla.
Jackson has shown a big, live arm this spring and as a dual-threat quarterback, he has shown the all-important ability to throw on the run as well. He has good size and a compact release for a long-limbed quarterback and his accuracy is solid. Right now, West Virginia could be the team to beat with their connections to South Florida and the offense they run and with Clemson and Nebraska already taking quarterbacks. - Mike Farrell, Rivals.com National Recruiting Director
RB
Dexter Williams
Orlando (Fla.) West Orange
Williams is a slasher with good speed who sees the field well, cuts upfield quickly and has the quickness to outrun defenders at the second and third level. He's able to get skinny in tight spaces, has good feet and cutting ability and he rarely takes false steps. He's very decisive. The Miami commitment is athletic enough to play other positions like wide receiver or defensive back, but we think he's a natural running back. - Mike Farrell, Rivals.com National Recruiting Director
RB
Johnny Frasier
Princeton, N.C.
Frasier is the type of running back that gets better as the game goes on. He is a one-cut back that gets down field in a hurry and, as a bigger back, he is very good in short-yardage situations. It is hard for defenders to get a good hit on Frasier and he easily runs through arm tackles. Frasier is closing in on naming a top five and two teams that look like they'll make that cut are Georgia and Florida State. - Adam Friedman, Rivals.com Mid-Atlantic Recruiting Analyst
TE
Tyler Petite
Moraga (Calif.) Campolindo
Petite is a long, lanky tight end who is surprisingly athletic and was basically unstoppable during one-on-ones at the RCS Northern California. He runs great routes and has soft hands and because of his length and speed, he can run away from defenders with regularity. USC and Duke are pretty even in his recruitment, but he's taking another trip to SC in June and if things go well the Trojans could be tough to beat. - Adam Gorney, Rivals.com West Recruiting Analyst
OG
Zach Stewart
Coalfield, Tenn.
Tennessee found a diamond in the rough when it offered and landed a commitment from Stewart in April of 2013. The hulking 6-foot-4, 320-pound offensive lineman was very impressive at the ultra-competitive RCS Atlanta stop, winning several reps against top-notch competition. With his size and strength, he has the potential to be a road grader-type at the guard position. - Woody Wommack, Rivals.com Southeast Recruiting Analyst
OG
Cody Ford
Pineville, La.
Ford had a big spring and showed strong at multiple camp appearances. At 6-foot-4, he is a well-put-together 322 pounds and has some nice strength and footwork to go along with it. TCU got in on Ford early and was able to secure his commitment before his stock really took off. - Jason Howell, Rivals.com Mid-South Recruiting Analyst
OG
Tevita Halalilo
Moreno Valley (Calif.) Rancho Verde
Halalilo checked in at 6-foot-3, 342 pounds at the RCS Southern California, but he was not slow-footed at all and he wasn't necessarily out of shape. He moved well in one-on-ones against some outstanding defensive linemen and was still insanely powerful. He could tighten up his body a little bit, but the offseason weight hasn't hurt the UCLA commit's foot speed and he's one of the toughest linemen I've seen this recruiting cycle. - Adam Gorney, Rivals.com West Recruiting Analyst
OT
Andre James
Herriman, Utah
James was a victim of limited exposure early in the process, but once his film started circulating, and he began to hit the camp circuit, word on him spread quickly. James carried very little bad weight and boasts elite lower body strength and a wide base. There aren't many defensive ends in America that are able to overpower the 6-foot-5 tackle. James recently narrowed his list to include Oklahoma, Ohio State, USC, Oregon, UCLA and Utah. He will take official visits to his five out-of-state finalists. - Rob Cassidy, Rivals.com Midlands/Southwest Recruiting Analyst
OT
Shane Lemieux
Yakima (Wash.) West Valley
Lemieux was under the radar until this spring when he started landing major offers and then we got a hold of his junior film. At 6-foot-6 and 280 pounds, Lemieux has excellent size, he's built well and he's ultra-powerful on his film. Lemieux hasn't done many camps, so eyeballing him is still important, but moving him to four-stars made sense because of his dominant film. Oregon is getting a really talented offensive tackle. - Adam Gorney, Rivals.com West Recruiting Analyst
LB
Sh'Mar Kilby-Lane
Hallandale Beach (Fla.) Hallandale
Kilby-Lane is a quick and explosive outside linebacker who closes on the football quickly and makes things happen when he arrives. A very physical tackler, he's a hitter but is also good at staying under control and making the sure tackle when needed. Ohio State has been considered the team to beat, but Miami will be in the mix as well.- Mike Farrell, Rivals.com National Recruiting Director
LB
C.J. Stalker
West Chester (Ohio) Lakota West
Stalker has added height and mass over the last year and now checks in at 6-foot-2 and 223 pounds. Yet, he is also playing with more explosiveness and discipline. Stalker was part of a deep group of linebackers at RCS Columbus, showing good range in coverage and natural athleticism in position drills. He remains wide open in his recruitment, but is very high on strong academic institutions like Virginia and Yale. - Josh Helmholdt, Rivals.com Midwest Recruiting Analyst
CB
Cameron Ordway
Pulaski (Tenn.) Giles County
At the start of 2014, Ordway had just one college offer, but after several strong camp showings he quickly vaulted himself onto the national scene. He's got good size and excellent ball skills as well as a competitive spirit that will serve him well at the next level. Ordway has several of potential college options, but Tennessee and Alabama are believed to be the favorites. - Woody Wommack, Rivals.com Southeast Recruiting Analyst
CB
Ykili Ross
Riverside (Calif.) Riverside Poly
Ross made a name for himself last year when he shut down one of the West's best receivers and backed it up again at the RCS Southern California. The first things that stands out are his size and athleticism. He's still raw as a football player, but once he's coached up, Ross could be even more special because he flies around the field and makes a lot of plays. USC and UCLA look strong early on but Oklahoma, Notre Dame and others are right there. - Adam Gorney, Rivals.com West Recruiting Analyst
CB
Holton Hill
Houston Lamar
Hill is a long defensive back who can find his comfort zone at both safety and cornerback. He has a smooth backpedal and plays with excellent balance. Hill has plenty of choices on the recruiting front and at this time is keeping an open mind. - Jason Howell, Rivals.com Mid-South Recruiting Analyst
ATH
Darrell Taylor
Hopewell, Va.
Taylor is a special athletic talent that can play that hybrid defensive end/outside linebacker role at the next level. He is relatively new to football, but he has NFL Draft first-rounder potential because of his natural athleticism and ability to make outstanding plays in the open field. Virginia Tech is in very good position with Taylor, but Florida also has a good shot if the Gators can get him to visit. - Adam Friedman, Rivals.com Mid-Atlantic Recruiting Analyst
ATH
D'Anfernee McGriff
Tallahassee (Fla.) Leon
McGriff is a big athlete who could play many positions but looks like his future will be as a wide receiver at Auburn. He has excellent straight-line quickness for a 225-pounder, but also a bit of wiggle and he's a load to tackle. He's a mismatch for cornerbacks and most safeties and too fast for linebackers. - Mike Farrell, Rivals.com National Recruiting Director
ATH
Donte Jackson
Jefferson (La.) Riverdale
Jackson is still very raw as a prospect, but he brings a ton of speed and explosiveness to the table. He has the potential to be a playmaking threat on either side of the football. His recruitment has really taken off over the last few months with a recent LSU offer shaking things up. He plans to take his time and his visits. - Jason Howell, Rivals.com Mid-South Recruiting Analyst
OG
Toby Weathersby
Houston Westfield
We didn't get to see a lot of Weathersby, but he definitely has the size and build coaches look for in a future standout offensive lineman. He committed to Texas in March but has recently talked about taking a few visits. - Jason Howell, Rivals.com Mid-South Recruiting Analyst

Mike Farrell is the National Recruiting Director for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.

Adam Gorney is a West Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.

Josh Helmholdt is a Midwest Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.

Jason Howell is a Mid-South Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.

Rob Cassidy is a Midlands/Southwest Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.

Woody Wommack is a Southeast Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.

Adam Friedman is a Mid-Atlantic Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.



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