With the regular season being in the books, it’s time to watch the best real freshmen in the country. We call it Farrell Freshman 15 and continue today with numbers 7-9.
Mark Pszonak contributed to this report.
PI FARRELL FRESHMAN 15: No. 13-15 | 10-12
RANKING CLASS 2022: Rivals250 | Location | Team | State | JUCO
RANKING CLASS 2023: Rivals250 | Location | Team | State
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RIVALS CAMP SERIES: Info / coverage on the 2021 camp series
9. DB Darian Chestnut, Syracuse
The skinny: Despite experiencing some ups and downs throughout the season, Chestnut has shown the potential of a next-level defender. Quickly gaining immediate playing time, he finished the season with 43 tackles, 3.5 tackles per loss, three interceptions and eight broken passes. His total of interceptions and passes were both fifth highest in the ACC.
Farrell’s opinion: As a four-star and top-of-the-class recruit in Syracuse, good things were expected. But Chestnut made a bigger impact than I thought.
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8. DL Josaiah Stewart, Coastal Carolina
The skinny: After immediately leaping into the spotlight with a 3.5 sack performance against Kansas in early September, Stewart continued his dominant game throughout 2021. Finishing with 43 tackles, 16 tackles for loss and 13 sacks – which he was fourth highest in the NCAA – he’s already playing as an elite defensive playmaker.
Farrell’s opinion: Stewart wasn’t heavily recruited from New England because he lacked great lengths and dimensions, but he immediately found his stride in college with free-throwing skills and a good range of passing and advanced technique.
7. DB Calen Bullock, USC
The skinny: Throughout the season, Bullock was one of the most consistent defensive players for a unit that saw his fair share of fights in 2021. Being one of the bright spots, he finished the season with 40 tackles, two interceptions and three broken passes. while exhibiting an impressive natural instincts.
Farrell’s opinion: Bullock was a Rivals250 security with a wide range and good frame to fill out of high school. He was much more physical than expected and started running. Mid-season, he was a defense leader.
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