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July 20, 2011

Florida state ranking loaded with elite talent

Preseason State Rankings:

The state of Florida is once again loaded with talent that is being scooped up by schools around the nation. Nearly half of the Rivals.com Florida Preseason Top 100 is already committed to BCS schools. Leading the charge is the state's top overall player, Jacksonville (Fla.) Bolles offensive tackle John Theus. Theus pledged to the Georgia in mid-July while attending their Dawg Night event.

In total, Theus is one of three offensive tackles in the top ten for the Sunshine State. Also joining him is Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) offensive tackle Avery Young, ranked eighth overall in Fla., and Boynton Beach (Fla.) offensive tackle Jessamen Dunker, ranked tenth overall in Fla. Young remains uncommitted while Dunker has pledged his services to the Florida Gators.

Tampa (Fla.) Berkeley Prep athlete Nelson Agholor checks in at second overall. The versatile athlete, who is getting set to narrow his list to a few favorites, can contribute at a variety of positions on both sides of the ball.

Third, and the final five-star in Florida, is St. Petersburg (Fla.) Lakewood defensive end Dante Fowler Jr.. Fowler, a Florida State commitment, is a speed-rusher off the edge who makes a lot happen in the offensive backfield.

Alabama commitment Eddie Williams is another versatile athlete, as he plays quarterback, wide receiver, and safety for his high school squad. The state's No. 4-ranked player will line up at safety when he arrives in Tuscaloosa.

The fifth and sixth spots in the countdown belong to a pair of cornerbacks - Miramar (Fla.) product Tracy Howard and Tallahassee (Fla.) North Florida Christian's Travis Blanks. Howard remains open while Blanks is heading to the ACC to play for Clemson.

Defense also claims the seventh spot, with the state's top linebacker earning the nod in Leesburg (Fla.) outside linebacker Noor Davis. Davis, who previously played at The Villages (Fla.), has already pledged his services to Stanford.

A wide receiver also creeps into the top ten with LSU commitment Avery Johnson from Pompano Beach (Fla.) Blanche Ely earning the ninth spot. Johnson, who is a soft commitment, is the younger brother of former Sunshine State standout Patrick Peterson.

The depth of the state is truly amazing though as you will find a lot of great talent at numerous spots, especially wide receivers and defensive backs, in the 2012 class in Florida.

Other state rankings also released Wednesday include Minnesota which is topped by Rivals250 four-star wide receiver Andre McDonald from Minnetonka (Minn.) Hopkins. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound wideout has pledged his services to the in-state Golden Gophers. As a junior he had 64 receptions for 1,144 yards and 19 touchdowns. He is the only Rivals250 prospect from the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Colorado is led by Arvada (Colo.) offensive tackle Paul Thurston, a Nebraska pledge. The 6-foot-5, 274-pound offensive tackle is considered the top prospect in The Centennial State and leads a group of five Rivals250 prospects.

Washington is led by Puyallup (Wash.) offensive tackle Joshua Garnett. The 6-foot-5, 275-pound lineman barely edged out fellow Evergreen State offensive tackle Zach Banner from Lakewood (Wash.) Lakes.

Today's releases marked the finale of the preseason state ranking releases by Rivals.com.


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