In college football, true freshmen rarely get to see the field. Red-shirts and upperclassmen are the nuclei to most successful college football programs.
However, there are always a handful of freshmen who see the field consistently and make an instant impact. Here are the top 10 freshmen set to take the stage in the upcoming 2020 college football season.
10. Desmond Evans, North Carolina
Evans is the highlight of the surprising top-five recruiting class by head coach Mack Brown. The 6-foot-6, 240-pound edge rusher will add an instant pass rush to the Tar Heels’ defense. He is the 43rd prospect according to 247 sports, and he is looking to lead an up-and-coming North Carolina defense.
9. Zachary Evans, Unknown
It is hard to keep someone as talented as Evans off this list even though he has not found himself a home for 2020. Texas A&M, Ole Miss, and Tennessee are the teams that are in the mix for the nation’s top-rated running back in the 2020 class. Wherever Evans lands, he will have an instant impact and will be one of the most-watched freshmen in 2020.
8. Maliq Carr, Purdue
The 6-foot-4, 230-pound tight end will join an offense that ranked second in passes attempted with 43.3 a game. With Rondale Moore gaining most of the attention by opposing defenses, Carr should find himself in a lot of favorable matchups. Carr and Moore will look to lead a lethal offense for the Boilermakers.
7. Clark Phillip III, Utah
Utah’s defense is going to look completely different in 2020. They lost six members of their secondary, and the rest of the defense has holes too. Phillip III will come in and should be an instant starter. He is the highest rated 2020 recruit for the Utes, so he should be used tremendously in the coming season.
6. Jordan Addison, Pitt
Similar to Jarrett, Addison will be the focal point of an offense that lacks true playmakers. Pitt’s offense averaged almost 40 passes, which was sevent in the entire country. Addison will add an instant spark to Pitt’s offense. The volume is there for Addison to put up big numbers.
5. Arik Gilbert, LSU
Gilbert is the highest-ranked Tight End in 247sports history. He is joining an LSU team that lost a lot of talent, but will still come close to matching 2019 potential. He’s 6-foot-5 and 255 pounds, and given the way LSU loves to run the spread offense, he will be a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses.
4. Bryce Young, Alabama
Over the past few years, Alabama has been known for using both of their talented quarterbacks as an advantage rather than a disadvantage. Like Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa, Jones is the experienced quarterback, and Young is the ultra-talented freshman. Young is the top-ranked dual-threat quarterback in 2020’s class. If Jones slips up, Alabama might be forced to put in Young.
3. Jeff Sims, Georgia Tech
Georgia Tech is transitioning away from the triple-option into a more pro-style offense. Last year was the first year under the new offense, and it was indeed a year of transition. However, the transition away from the triple-option is leaving the door open for big-time players. Jeff Sims de-committed from Florida State, and is now going to be the focal point of this up and coming Georgia Tech’s offense.
2. Rakim Jarrett, Maryland
College Park has not seen a playmaker like Jarrett in ages. The Terps have been trying to find their groove after a series of scandals hit their football program. They averaged 162 passing yards last season, which was No. 118th in the nation. Jarrett will be met with inconsistent quarterback play in College Park, but he will the focal point of the entire offense, and the former five-star recruit might be one of the best statistical receivers in college football this year.
1. Bryan Bresee, Clemson
Bresee is the No. 1 overall prospect according to 247 Sports Composite. The 6-foot-5, 290-pound freshman will join the star-studded Clemson defense. Bresee was the best prospect for a very good reason. He played like he was the man among a bunch of boys. It will be a long climb to the top of the depth chart, but once he gets there, he will be sure to be the top defensive lineman for the Tigers.