While teams in the Big 12 Conference have made a living off of developing two and three-star athletes into some of the nation’s top-performing college football players, four teams from the league saw upgrades to committed players in the Class of 2024.
In the latest update to the 247Sports recruiting page, 21 prospects were upgraded to four-star status. Of the 21 players featured, the update included the likes of Houston‘s Jayshon Ridgle, Kansas State‘s Trae Davis, Oklahoma State‘s Tre Griffiths, and Iowa State‘s Marcus Neal.
247’s staff wrote about each player who received an upgrade starting off with Houston’s Jayshon Ridgle.
“As the Cougars put a bow on their first-ever Power Five signing class, Fritz once again appears to have struck gold in the form of newly minted four-star ATH Jayshon Ridgle,” 247Sports national analyst Cooper Petagna said. “A back-to-back 60-meter state champion from the Yellowhammer State, it’s rare to see a prospect with such a profound statistical and athletic profile as Ridgle get out of the southeastern footprint. Verified at 6-foot and 200-plus pounds, the newest Cougars signee should provide Fritz with a creative weapon capable of injecting his playmaking ability into Houston’s offense and return game from day one.”
Following Ridgle on the list was Kansas State wide receiver commit Trae Davis who 247’s Gabe Brooks spoke about saying, “We identified Trae Davis this past offseason as a serious sleeper from the talent-rich East Texas region. Davis debuted before his senior campaign with a high-three-star rating on 247Sports, which elevates the K-State signee to a 90 rating as an end-of-cycle four-star flier thanks to his layered athletic profile and on-field prowess. An above-the-rim finisher with impressive sport-specific basketball skills, Davis’ big-play juice transcends his role. In the past three seasons, he accumulated 2,200-plus receiving yards, 1,100-plus rushing yards, and 44 offensive touchdowns, in addition to four interceptions on defense and four return game TDs. Davis also boasts strong track and field data, including a 23-foot-1 long jump, 44-foot-10 triple jump, and 21.83-second 200-meter dash. We firmly believe that Davis could develop into an impact player on either side of the ball, as well as provide early snaps in multiple special teams capacities.”
Oklahoma State followed the Wildcats commit on the list with a solid write-up on wide receiver commit Tre Griffiths.
“Keller (Texas) wideout Tre Griffiths displayed noticeably improved explosiveness during his 2023 senior season, which resulted in career highs in receptions, receiving yards, and touchdowns,” Brooks said. “Griffiths continues to hone his route-running acumen and suddenness laterally, but his linear burst is not in question. Griffiths’ on-field athleticism undoubtedly derives in part from his outstanding triple jump data, which include leaps of 47-foot-10 1/4 and 47-foot-7 1/2, which earned fourth in the Texas 6A state finals and second in regionals, respectively. Reviewing Griffiths’ senior season, I couldn’t help but get some Elijah Higgins vibes. Higgins was a bit heavier coming out of high school, but the 2023 fifth-round draft pick and Griffiths share a similar play style and frames. Griffiths might need a little time, but he possesses traits that suggest a similar NFL Draft upside.”
The final player listed in the recent update was Iowa State safety Marcus Neal whom Gabe Brooks spoke about saying, “One of the best pure football players on this list, Iowa State signee Marcus Neal earned Missouri Class 5 Defensive Player of the Year honors from the state’s coaches association, in addition to all-conference first-team accolades on both sides of the ball. Pushing 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, Neal owns good length with a wingspan longer than 6-foot-4 and impressive functional athleticism across all scenarios on the gridiron. He also checks the multi-sport box with limited track and field reps in the 100-meter, long jump, and triple jump. Neal represents a highly instinctive back-end playmaker who could potentially fit multiple safety or nickel roles at the next level. His prodigious senior season saw him produce 1,000-plus scrimmage yards, 11 receiving touchdowns, four rushing TDs, 90-plus tackles, and five interceptions. Neal jumps from a strong three-star 86 rating to a four-star 90 grade on 247Sports.”