Dontavius Russell is one of the top recruits in Georgia and the Southeast. He stars at defensive tackle for Carrolton (Ga.) High School. Russell stands and impressive 6'3 and 300 pounds. He holds offers from Georgia, Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Kentucky, N.C. State, South Carolina, Stanford, USC and Vanderbilt. As of this writing, Russell is committed to the University of Georgia. Russell is a consensus four-star recruit. He is widely considered one of the top-100 players in the country and one of the 10 best defensive tackles.
But what makes Russell so highly rated? As with many line recruits, it starts with his rare combination of size and athleticism. There just aren't many humans who have Russell's size and the ability to perform quick-twitch movements. Here are some film clips of Russell.
It's more than that, though. Part of what makes Russell such an intriguing prospect is his potential to continue growing and get even better. Already at 300 pounds, Russell has some sloppiness to him, but in a college weight program, he will be able to shed some of that and add more good weight.
In sports, certainty is a valuable commodity. And in Russell, there is a certainty that he will not be consistently blocked in the run game. He will command a double team.
Russell shows good burst off the ball, though there are a few times when he gets blocked because he comes out of his stance too high. This is a common refrain about even the best of high school linemen. He does not profile as a great pass rusher, but shouldn't be such a liability as to be limited to just two downs. Russell should do a better job using his hands more consistently, but he flashes a strong punch and the ability to move his feet laterally to make plays.
Russell is a very good prospect and profiles as a multi-year starter at the BCS level. He's also a bright young man who should excel in the classroom.