Signing Day Storylines
Dorial Green-Beckham
Dorial Green-Beckham
National Recruiting Analyst
Posted Jan 29, 2012

What wild storylines can be expected on Signing Day this year? With this class, anything is possible...

Signing Day is back.

What will the storylines be this time around? Who will make a decision that will shock the world? Who will make a decision on national television, only to have a change of heart?

From No. 1 quarterback Gunner Kiel committing to home-state Indiana, then decommitting and announcing for LSU. Then he didn’t show up in Baton Rouge when the early enrollees were supposed to, only to materialize at Notre Dame, choosing to stay in-state after all. However, it wasn't with the Hoosiers, where he would have been their most high-profile commit, perhaps ever. Instead, he became the latest five-star quarterback to try his hand at running the Irish offense.

Kiel won't be able to sign anywhere on Signing Day, though, saving some drama for someone else.

For the past four years, the No. 1 player in the country ranked by has chosen to announce after Signing Day, or at least make his decision after that.

Terrelle Pryor's star-crossed career at Ohio State didn't get announced until well after Signing Day in 2008.

In 2009, Bryce Brown chose to wait until mid-March to make his decision. He signed with Tennessee before transferring to Kansas State and then ultimately quitting the Wildcats' team this past fall.

Seantrel Henderson decided on Signing Day in 2010 that he would go to USC, except he didn't sign with USC until March 23. And once the NCAA sanctions fell on the Trojans, he never even enrolled. Instead, he was released from his scholarship and went to Miami.

Jadeveon Clowney chose to wait so he could announce on his birthday, nearly two weeks after Signing Day. He chose South Carolina and was chosen as FoxSportsNext’s 2011 Freshman Defensive Player of the Year.

Thankfully, Dorial Green-Beckham, the nation's top-ranked prospect in 2012, has said he'll announce on Signing Day.

But there are players who will wait, such as Davonte' Neal, Jordan Diamond and likely Stefon Diggs.

So, forget worrying about them come Wednesday. Instead, keep an eye on these storylines:

1. Where will DGB go?

We know Green-Beckham is going to announce on Wednesday, but where he goes is anyone's guess. He has kept things ridiculously close to the vest. Home state Missouri is hoping he realizes there is no place like home as the Tigers make the move to the Southeastern Conference. Arkansas' vaunted offense would love to add the 6-foot-6, 220-pound wide receiver, who was the Co-MVP of the US Army Bowl. Texas and Oklahoma are hoping his time in Missouri will make him want to stay in the Big 12, even if the Tigers are leaving the conference. It should be interesting to watch.

2. A package deal out of Sacramento?

After DGB in the Scout Rankings are two Sacramento natives, No. 2-ranked Arik Armstead and No. 3-ranked Shaquille Thompson. Both made decisions early: Armstead to USC, Thompson to Cal. Thompson's first commitment lasted a week before he opened things up last spring. Armstead stayed committed to USC for almost a year and a half before he opened things up in the fall. Thompson then re-chose Cal during the US Army Bowl, only to have Cal lose Tosh Lupoi — Thompson's friend — to Washington. Armstead nearly announced his decision Jan. 18 but decided to wait. He'll announce officially on Sunday afternoon; Thompson will do so on Signing Day. Could Armstead's final choice have any bearing on Thompson? Potentially. The three common schools in their final group are Cal, Oregon and Washington. The winner of Armstead could be doubly happy come Wednesday, when Thompson decides.

3. How good can Stanford be up front?

The Cardinal already have a verbal commitment from three Scout 300 linemen, headlined by five-star Joshua Garnett. But they're also in the mix for two more elite tackles: five-star Kyle Murphy and four-star Andrus Peat, both of whom will announce on Signing Day. If the Cardinal can land them, then whoever takes over for quarterback Andrew Luck will have plenty of protection up front.

4. Who will be No. 1?

Alabama was No. 1 when it mattered most, in January, when it won its second BCS national championship in three years. The Tide are hoping for another No. 1-ranking when the final class rankings are computed. They'll have to hold off Texas, which is at No. 2 right now, and the two have been posturing all year long. The Tide, though, look to be in better shape, as they still have the chance at some more elite prospects and the Horns, as usual, have the majority of their class already committed.

5. Which live animal will appear?

For sheer entertainment value, Isaiah Crowell pulling out a bulldog puppy to signify his decision to attend Georgia, remains at the top. Immediately, fans across the country wanted to up the ante. Arik Armstead, at 6-foot-8, 285 pounds, could pull out a Duck without a problem, a Husky without any issue, even a four-leaf clover if he could find one. But Auburn fans would love to see him pull out a Tiger, and Cal fans would embrace him yanking out a Bear. He's big enough that it wouldn't be as much of a challenge as you might think.

Whatever happens, wherever it happens, the 2012 class has earned a reputation for being one of the oddest classes in recent memory.

Can't wait.

Related Stories
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Zou Zone: Signing Day Countdown 1-26-12
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