Offensive tackle prospect Seantrel Henderson (6-8/340) of Saint Paul, Minn. was Scout's number one prospect for the Class of 2010 when the initial rankings were released over a year ago. After over a year of scouting the nation's top prospects, it's Henderson who remains the top prospect for the Class of 2010.
A premier left tackle candidate, Henderson has the all of the attributes coveted by offensive line coaches and the quarterbacks whose blindside he protects. Henderson has the quick feet of a basketball player in the low post, the girth to handle the more powerful bull rushers, and the long arms to steer a speed rusher around the edge.
Big Baby Glen Davis of the Boston Celtics had similar attributes as Henderson, and I had always wondered how his career would have panned out had he chosen the gridiron. As fate would have it, we should all get a pretty good idea following the college career of Seantrel Henderson.
Henderson is going to have his work cut out for him as a collegian as the deepest position for the Class of 2010 is defensive line. There are 69 defensive linemen included in the Scout 300 and a whopping eight defensive ends in the Top 50. Headlining this class of ends is Ronald Powell (6-5/250) of Rancho Cucamonga, California. Powell, committed to the University of Florida, has Jevon Kearse like skills from his end position. Kearse was dubbed "The Freak" for his combination of size and athleticism.
If defensive line is the deepest position it doesn't have much of a lead over the wide receivers. 46 receivers made the Scout 300 this year, including two of the Top 5 players in the entire country. Robert Woods (6-2/185) of Gardena, Calif. and Kyle Prater (6-5/205) of Hillside, Ill. are Scout's No. 3 and No. 4 players in the country regardless of position, and their recruitment is similar to that of Scout's two top defensive tackles.
Despite playing the same position, Woods and Prater bring a very different skill set, similar to Floyd and Easley. Woods is a state champion track and field participant who has tremendous body control and gets better separation than any receiver in the country. Prater is a big, physical receiver capable of running away from players with his long strides, but he is the receiver that's going to out muscle and out leap a defensive back.
And like Floyd and Easley, Woods and Prater are committed to the same school; the nation's top two receivers are headed west to play for USC.
The receiver position across the board is a deep one. I don't know that we'll ever see a class like the Class of 2008 which included Julio Jones (Alabama), A.J. Green (Georgia), Deandre Brown (Southern Miss), and Michael Floyd (Notre Dame) among others, but the Class of 2010 legitimately goes 75 deep with players that could be members of the Scout 300. The Top 10 might not match the Class of 2008, but from 10 down, the Class of 2010 is as deep a class of receivers as I can remember.
Picking the top quarterbacks for this class was a bit more of a challenge. In recent seasons there have been No. 1 players like Mark Sanchez ('05), Matthew Stafford ('06), Jimmy Clausen ('07), Terrelle Pryor ('08) and Matt Barkley ('09). This class does not include players that scream 2013 1st round draft pick, but we fully expect Jake Heaps of Issaquah, Wash. to throw for a million yards at BYU. Heaps is nearly flawless in his fundamentals and accuracy. Phillip Sims (Alabama), Paul Jones (Penn State), Blake Bell (Oklahoma) and Devin Gardner (Michigan) join Heaps as 5-Stars on Scout.
I've always said that the easiest position to scout is running back. How many times during the course of a season does a television analyst say of a play made by a running back "that can't be coached". The typical star running back isn't coached up; he's recruited.
Chris Martin (6-4/240) is a hybrid type of defender that is becoming more and more popular for defensive coordinators across the country. Martin has the size to put his hand down and play end, or he could stand up and play outside linebacker in a 3-4. Martin has travelled near and far to play high school football this season before settling in Colorado for his senior year, but his travels will bring him back home to Cal for his college career.
If recruiting in pairs seems to be a theme at the top of the Scout 300, Alabama continues the trend with the defensive backs. The 2009 BCS Champion has commitments from Scout's No. 1 ranked safety, Keenan Allen (6-2/195) of Greensboro, N.C., and Scout's No. 1 corner, Demarcus Milliner (6-1/185) of Millbrook, Ala.. Allen and Milliner are both players that have tremendous physical attributes as well as playmaking instincts.
The initial player rankings for the Class of 2010 came out in September of 2008. This represents the final edition of the Scout 300 for the Class of 2010. However, the first update to the Scout 300 for the Class of 2011 is right around the corner. Scout released its initial top 100 players last September as well as the current three stars who are on the Scout300 Watch List and will be revising this list and adding to it the week of signing day.