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Every year, college football fanbases across the country get excited about their team's incoming recruiting class, eager to see the next stars of their favorite program.
The best of those players are given five stars in the recruiting process. There are about 32 five-stars every year, making them essentially college football’s version of first-round picks.
Here’s how every five-star recruit in the 2022 class graded out in their true freshman season.
1. DI Walter Nolen, Texas A&M Aggies
2022 grade: 68.1 (289 snaps)
Nolen was one of Texas A&M’s starting interior defensive linemen this season as a true freshman.
The No. 1 overall recruit showed encouraging signs as a pass rusher, posting a 13% pressure rate that ranked sixth among Power Five interior defensive linemen with at least 120 pass-rushing snaps. That mark also led the SEC, which is even more impressive considering who finished in second. That would be Georgia’s Jalen Carter, PFF’s No. 2 prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Was impressed by Walter Nolen this season.
The former #1 overall recruit had a 13% pressure-rate as a true freshman per @PFF.
Among defensive tackles with 120+ pass-rushes, that’s 6th in the Power Five.
Also led SEC, where Jalen Carter was in 2nd ????pic.twitter.com/KiROSW66Z3
— Max Chadwick (@Chad_Maxwick) January 13, 2023
2. CB/WR Travis Hunter, Jackson State Tigers
2022 grade: 83.9 at cornerback (503 snaps), 82.0 at wide receiver (87 snaps)
Hunter made history when he signed with Jackson State, becoming the first five-star recruit ever to go to a non-FBS school.
He subsequently dominated in his true freshman season for the Tigers, with his 83.9 defensive grade a top-15 mark among FCS cornerbacks after he picked off two passes and forced eight incompletions.
His unbelievable ball skills transferred over from defense to offense, as well. The true freshman also caught 17 passes for 187 yards and four touchdowns.
Hunter is transferring from Jackson State to Colorado, following head coach Deion Sanders.
Mannn I’m excited to see Travis Hunter at Colorado.
Electric athlete on both sides of the ball. pic.twitter.com/EYPMFkA9Ro
— Ryan Fowler (@_RyanFowler_) January 6, 2023