Posted On: 04/22/21 11:24 AM

Eleven positions. Eleven players. Eleven honors.

That’s it.

Five months prior to the start of the 2021 football season, we’re ready to hand out some way early pre-season awards. Here are the 11 defensive players, regardless of grade or classification, we think are the best of the best going into Spring Football, the summer 7-on-7s and fall camp.

DEFENSIVE END

DJ Aiken DJ Aiken 6'5" | DL Bluffton | 2022 State SC , Bluffton

Aiken isn’t a true edge rusher, but really more of a combo end-tackle based on the Bobcats’ scheme and how it utilizes the 6-foot-5, 265-pound nightmare.

DEFENSVE TACKLE

Eamon Smalls Eamon Smalls 6'3" | DL Beaufort | 2023 State SC , Beaufort 

Already 6-foot-3 and 320 pounds, this Class of 2023 prospect chews up more than his share of space. He singlehandedly has opposing teams altering their run games.

DEFENSIVE TACKLE

Xzavier McLeod Xzavier McLeod 6'4" | DL Camden | 2023 State SC , Camden

McLeod has the looks of the next great defensive lineman to come out of Camden. The 6-foot-4, 280 pounder is only going to get bigger and better over the next two years.

DEFENSIVE END

Hudson Lee Hudson Lee 6'5" | DL Dorman | 2022 State SC , Dorman

Lee routinely goes against some of the best offensive tackles in the state and makes it look easy. He’s 6-foot-5, can see where he needs to be and

South Carolina All Access Pass

Subscribe to Prep Redzone South Carolina to get access to all premium articles and prospect rankings for as little as $2 per week with an annual subscription!