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December 27, 2011
The first five-stars: Reuben Foster
They are the best of the best. The players that are wanted by every program and destined to make a big impact at the college level and beyond.
Rivals.com has identified the first five-star prospects for the 2013 class and is unveiling them this week. Ten prospects have been awarded five-stars but are not ranked at this time and we will profile two each day. The next player to receive the five-star spotlight is LaGrange (Ga.) Troup linebacker Reuben Foster
Reuben Foster, LB, LaGrange (Ga.) Troup
Attributes: 6-2, 232 pounds, 4.50 40
Top schools: Foster committed to Alabama in mid-July.
Scouting Report: Foster is a big, strong, athletic defender who could play either inside or outside linebacker in college. His coach thinks he's better at outside backer. Although Foster enjoys that position most, he thinks he currently is more advanced inside. Playing inside, it is clear that Foster sees the entire field well and has good instincts about what might be coming his way. Playing at that spot also allows him to utilize his terrific range. He also excels at taking on blocks, even multiple ones. On the outside, Foster is an elite pass-rusher who can get into the backfield fast. Foster's relentlessness is another thing that gives him an edge. He's an effort guy to say the least.
Analyst's take: "Foster is truly an outstanding defender who can hurt an offense in numerous ways, no matter where he lines up. He's quick, he's aggressive, he's physical and he plays with great intensity. Inside, he shows great sideline-to-sideline ability and does an excellent job getting through and around blocks to either disrupt plays in the backfield, or make tackles on the edge and downfield. As an outside 'backer, Foster arguably is best playing up at the line, where his quickness and ability to change directions in an instant create havoc." - Keith Niebuhr, Southeast Analyst, Rivals.com
Why he's a five-star: "Foster is a big linebacker who moves very well from sideline-to-sideline, shows excellent balance and ability to keep his feet in traffic, takes very good angles and delivers a blow when he arrives. He is very good at diagnosing plays and finding the right gap to fill and he knows when to shed blockers and when he needs to take them on to allow others to free up and make a play. He's a high-energy guy who excellent size and a rarity in his size-quickness combination at inside linebacker." - Mike Farrell, National Analyst, Rivals.com
His coach says: "His motor never stops. I mean, he wants the ball in his hands. He wants to punt, kick, anything … he's got to be involved. He's a leader. He's also an extremely hard worker. Everyone on our team wants to play hard because he plays hard. He's a tremendous personality. I think he's better outside. He's real quick off the ball, and he's able to re-direct." - Troup coach Charles Flowers
Odds and ends: Foster didn't begin playing football until he was in the eighth grade because his mother worried he would get hurt….In 2011, he recorded 185 total tackles and 14 sacks….Though committed to the Tide, Foster said he will "visit a lot more schools." Candidates for a visit include Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Notre Dame, USC and Texas A&M….Foster is the highest-rated prospect from his school, a program that has had three four stars since 2009.
NFL player comparison: Rolando McClain, Oakland Raiders