Rivals.com has identified the first five-star prospects for the 2012 class and is unveiling them this week. Twelve prospects have been awarded five-stars but are not ranked at this time and we will profile three each day. The five-star spotlight is now on Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek offensive tackle D.J. Humphries.
Analyst's take: "Humphries is an exceptional athlete for an offensive tackle with great footwork, agility, technique and athleticism. He gets out of his stance quickly, has a very polished pass protection set, a smooth kick-slide and he uses his arms well to keep defenders off balance. As a run blocker he comes off the ball low and strong, has good strength when he locks on and he can reach the second level to hit moving targets downfield." - Mike Farrell, Rivals.com
Here's a look at the five-star prospects announced so far:
Why he's a five-star: "He may be the most athletic offensive lineman in the country. Humphries is a natural hip and knee bender and he has the feet to get downfield and make that extra block. You couple that with tremendous body structure making him the best pure left offensive tackle in the country." - Barry Every, Rivals.com
His coach says: "D.J. is so athletic for a player his size, he's about 6-6, 280 pounds now and he moves so well, gets downfield and he can hit linebackers as easily as defensive linemen. He hasn't given up a sack in two years and is the hardest worker I've ever been around. He does it all and has great God-given talent that he continues to improve with his work ethic. He's easily a five-star kid. " - Mallard Creek head coach Michael Palmieri
Odds and ends: Humphries played basketball until early in his high school career when he was convinced to play football as a defensive end. He then moved to tackle and now has emerged as one of the best players in the country. Humphries emerged at the NIKE Camp in Blacksburg last spring and protected the blindside of 2011 four-star quarterback Marquise Williams last year. Humphries father, also named D.J., played wide receiver at Presbyterian College and also played Arena League Football.
NFL player comparison: D'Brickashaw Ferguson, New York Jets