2013’s Top True Freshmen
By BJ Bennett
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How the SEC's top ten prospects performed in their highly-anticipated true freshmen seasons.
The role of the incoming freshman in college football has changed dramatically over the years. Top prospects are expected to come in and make an impact right away. Generally, they do just that. Below is a look at the top ten SEC signees, per ESPN, from the class of 2013 and how they performed their true freshmen seasons.
1. Robert Nkemdiche, DE, Ole Miss - The nation's top prospect totaled 34 tackles, eight tackles for loss and a pair of sacks. Nkemdiche had five stops, four solo, in the Rebels' Music City Bowl victory over Georgia Tech. He lined up in the backfield on occasion his freshman year, rushing for 32 yards on five attempts.
2. Carl Lawson, DE, Auburn - Finished second on the team with four sacks, all of them coming in conference play, for the SEC Champions and BCS runner-up. Had a breakout performance with 3.5 tackles for loss and two sacks in a win over Ole Miss.
3. Vernon Hargreaves III, CB, Florida - Had interceptions in his first two and three of his first four games. Recorded 14 passes defended, third-most in the SEC. Was named first-team all-conference and a third-team AP All-American as a defensive back. Also saw time as a return specialist.
4. Laremy Tunsil, OL, Ole Miss - Made the first start of his career against Texas and proved to be a fixture for the Rebels from that point on. Earned SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week honors after Ole Miss' win over Arkansas.
5. Kelvin Taylor, RB, Florida - Ran 111 times for 508 yards and four touchdowns in just nine games. Rushed 21 times for 96 yards and two scores against South Carolina. Was largely the feature back for the Gators in November.
6. Derrick Henry, ATH, Alabama - Averaged over ten yards per carry, rushing for 100 yards against both Arkansas and Oklahoma in the Sugar Bowl. Added a 61-yard touchdown reception versus the Sooners. Spent part of the year playing defense.
7. Montravius Adams, DT, Auburn - Got a sack in the first game of his career, a win over Washington State. Like Lawson, Adams won a conference title as a freshman. Was a key part of the Tigers' deep defensive line rotation.
8. Reuben Foster, LB, Alabama - Played in just six games, seeing the most action against FCS Chattanooga. Foster totaled five tackles and a tackle for loss versus the Mocs.
9. Laquon Treadwell, WR, Ole Miss - Led the Rebels and ranked third in the SEC with 72 receptions. Caught at least two passes in every single game. Had two touchdown receptions against both Texas A&M and Troy. Was named the SEC Freshman of the Year.
10. Antonio Conner, S, Ole Miss - Finished third on the team with 66 tackles, adding six pass break-ups and five tackles for loss. Intercepted a pass in the first game of his career.