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JMU Football’s 2024 Recruiting Class Poised for Immediate Impact

Image courtesy of JMU Athletics Communications

By Ben Hofer

As national signing day approaches, all eyes are on the talented 2024 recruiting class, and for good reason. The incoming recruiting class is one of, if not the best, recruiting class in JMU history based on rankings.

This class represents the first class of exclusively FBS recruits who will have the chance to make their mark on the field for the Dukes on Day 1. Mostly consisting of consensus 3-star prospects and a handful of those on the edge of 4-star status, this group of young athletes promises to elevate JMU’s football program to new heights. While we can’t predict with absolute certainty which recruits will see the field in their debut season on campus, we can certainly make some estimated guesses. 

It’s important to remember that these recruits are still teenagers aged 17 and 18 who are taking their first steps away from home, much like any other college student. The transition from high school to college is a deeply personal experience for each of them, and it comes with unique challenges.

High-level competition

On the field, the early success of these freshmen hinges partially on competition and snap count at the high school level. We love 757 recruits, but it’s essential to acknowledge that different states offer varying levels of competition.

Florida, Georgia, and Texas, for instance, consistently serve as battlegrounds for high school football’s top-tier teams and players. Take, for example, JMU quarterback commit, Alberto Mendoza, who hails from the football hotbed that is Miami-Dade County.

Mendoza has already proven himself by leading Christopher Columbus High School to a remarkable 14-1 state championship run in his first year as a starter. Mendoza was on the receiving end of a “Philly Special” touchdown to secure that state title. Moreover, he is currently captaining his team towards a repeat performance with a 6-1 record. Mendoza is viewed as a three-star recruit by most national recruiting sites.

Another standout, linebacker commit Bryson Banks, suits up for the nationally ranked Buford High School in Georgia, where he regularly faces off against P5-level players. The three-star prospect was offered by UCF, among others.

Exposure to higher levels of competition not only prepares recruits for the challenges they’ll encounter at JMU, but also acclimatizes them to the pressure of performing on a bigger stage.

Speed demons

Raw talent and physical attributes can’t be dismissed.

Speedster Chase Regan clocked an astonishing 4.28-second 40-yard dash this summer, showcasing elite speed that stands out in JMU’s history.

Similarly, highly sought-after and top-ranked athlete Jah Jah Boyd brings an exceptional level of versatility and athleticism that has rarely been seen in recent years. These innate qualities are often unteachable; you either have them or you don’t.

Regan and Boyd are both considered three-star prospects who will likely play defensive back at JMU. Boyd is currently the highest-rated recruit in JMU’s 2024 class, and he received offers from Penn State and Virginia Tech, among others.

It’s entirely plausible that these recruits may quickly work their way into starting positions next year, especially with JMU graduating key players in the secondary following the 2023 season.

The 2024 season holds great promise for the Dukes, with the recruiting class poised to seize the moment. While we can’t predict the future with certainty, there’s reason for optimism about the 2024 class.

Editor’s note: You can find our 2024 JMU recruiting class tracker here, and Ben is also keeping tabs on how the 2024 class is performing at their respective high schools this season here.

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