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June 4, 2013

Five-Star Challenge: Match-up No. 4


MORE: Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge

Rivals.com is counting down the top 10 match-ups we can't wait to watch at the second annual Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge presented by Under Armour heading into the event at Soldier Field in Chicago. Today, it's RB Leonard Fournette vs. LB Raekwon McMillan.

RB Leonard Fournette, New Orleans (La.) St. Augustine
vs.
LB Raekwon McMillan, Hinesville (Ga.) Liberty County

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Why Fournette has an edge: Fournette is one of the bigger backs in the country at 6-1, 225 pounds, but he is far from a one-dimensional threat. He possesses elite feet, quickness and burst that allow him to be surprisingly nimble and elusive. He can just as easily make defenders miss as he can run over them. In his junior season, he showed improved ability to be a playmaking threat as a receiver out of the backfield. Even the best linebackers are at a disadvantage when trying to corral his combination of quickness and power, which makes him one of the toughest match-ups in the country for opposing defenses.
-- Jason Howell, Midlands recruiting analyst

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Why McMillan has an edge: There's no doubt that pass coverage isn't McMillan's strong suit, but he has shown vast improvement over the past few months, dropping some bad weight and in turn increasing his speed and agility in the open field. Fournette will give him all that he can handle, but McMillan should be able to run with him and if he can get a good jam on the line, it's going to be tough for Fournette to overcome. The match-up will be a great gauge for McMillan's new physique and should be a preview of the players he'll be matched with at the next level.
-- Woody Wommack, Southeast recruiting analyst

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Overall edge: This is size against size, so McMillan will have a better chance than he would against smaller, shiftier backs. However, Fournette is an accomplished pass catcher out of the backfield for a big man, he has very good speed and he will have a lot of space to work in. McMillan has slimmed down from the winter and he is long, but he will need to get a great jam near the line of scrimmage consistently to win individual matchups. Fournette is trying to keep the No. 1 running back title while pushing for the No. 1 overall spot and he will be motivated to dominate all linebackers, including the nation's best.
-- Mike Farrell, national recruiting analyst

MORE: No. 10: Hyatt vs. Beckner Jr. | No. 9: Hood vs. Hamilton | No. 8: Mixon vs. Bates |
No. 7: Brown vs. Knox | No. 6: Michel vs. Williams | No. 5: Lane vs. Jackson



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