As the 2024 class is getting a rankings refresh as they head into their all-important junior season. Colin Simmons has held down the No. 1 spot in the 2024 Rivals250 so far but there are plenty of challengers hoping to jump up the list. The Rivals national analysts – Clint Cosgrove, Adam Friedman, Adam Gorney, Nick Harris and Ryan Wright – make their case for who they think should be the No. 1 prospect in the new 2024 Rivals250.
COSGROVE’S VIEW: Dylan Raiola
There is a whole lot of projecting when you are trying to make the case for the nation’s top player in a rising junior class. As a result of that, I am going with the current best player at the position of most value, and for me that is hands down Dylan Raiola. The 2024 phenom from Chandler, Ariz. has a live arm, prototypical size and the athleticism to boot. His playing style is eerily similar to Patrick Mahomes and Raiola is the closest comp to the Chiefs quarterback that I have seen in years. Raiola is currently committed to Ohio State but I doubt that will keep other teams from pursuing his talents in the coming years. Should Raiola keep his pledge to the Buckeyes, their quarterback room should be in good hands for the better part of the next decade.
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FRIEDMAN’S VIEW: Dylan Raiola
I could see a few players at No. 1 overall. If it’s not Colin Simmons, Dylan Raiola seems like a good fit at the top spot for now. The Ohio State commit has the measurables you’re looking for in a top ranked quarterback and is a gifted passer but there is still much to learn about his game. It will be great to see how he performs in a new environment, on a new team, and how he adjusts to new defenses. Simmons, Desmond Ricks, Julian Sayin and Jadyn Davis along with Raiola are in the conversation for No. 1 overall and an exceptional junior season from any of them could vault them to the front of the pack.
GORNEY’S VIEW: Dylan Raiola
Anyone who saw Raiola throw the ball during the Steve Clarkson QB Retreat wouldn’t have an issue with putting the Ohio State quarterback No. 1 in the class. He is a phenomenal talent, has excellent size and looks college-ready heading into his junior season of high school. I also like his makeup as well – competitive, driven, wants to recruit the best class possible, that kind of mix is special and Raiola has it coming from a football family. It’s early and there could be changes along the way with Jeremiah Smith being such a special receiver and some defensive ends who could really make a statement including former No. 1 Colin Simmons but I’m completely content with Raiola at the top.
HARRIS’ VIEW: Dylan Raiola
The No. 1 quarterback in the country has one of the easier cases for being the top player in the country after a stellar sophomore season in Texas against legitimate competition paired with a strong offseason showing at QB Retreat. His poise in the pocket, ability to throw on the run outside of the pocket and his high IQ from the quarterback position made the Ohio State commit the most sought-after signal-caller in the country for his class.
Making the move to Arizona for his junior season, I think Raiola is set to make an even bigger impact on his team’s offense with an increased skill set and more physical development from the offseason. If Raiola can stay healthy for his final two seasons, I think we could have one of the better prep quarterback prospects in recent history on our hands, even more so than Arch Manning.
WRIGHT’S VIEW: Desmond Ricks
Ricks is an elite defender with great cover skills. As the era of the big corner takes hold, he is the model for that looks like at the collegiate level. The IMG Academy five-star routinely goes up against five- and four-stars in practice and showcases his skills against top national competition. He is quick, fluid, long and very athletic. Ricks is a strong choice for the top-ranked 2024 player in the country.