Few teams get an early jump on recruiting like the Texas
Longhorns, who usually have their class virtually completed by St. Patrick's Day, but the trend of early commitments has gone nationwide, and for the first time, a team other than Texas sits atop Scout's Team Recruiting Rankings upon its first release.
has built off the momentum of a Top 5 class in 2012, and the Wolverines have their sights set on an even better finish in 2013. While there is still a long, long way to go until National Signing Day next February, its Michigan and Head Coach Brady Hoke who sit in the pole position at No. 1.
Headlining Michigan's class is quarterback Shane Morris
(6-foot-3/195 pounds) of Warren, Mich. who has been committed to the Wolverines for nearly a year. Morris is a big lefty who had a good showing at the Elite 11 Tryout in Columbus, Ohio recently and earned an invite to the finals held in July.
Morris is bringing some friends with him including the nation's top offensive guard prospect Patrick Kugler
(6-4/270) of Wexford, Pa. Kugler is a lean but powerful interior line prospect who will only get bigger and stronger as he gets older.
Like last year, the Wolverines are doing a good job in the state Ohio. Of Michigan's 17 total commitments, eight of them come from the Buckeye state, including five-star safety prospect Dymonte Thomas
(6-1/180) of Alliance, Ohio.
While Texas isn't currently holding the No. 1 spot, it doesn't take long to find the Longhorns while scrolling down the list of top teams. Texas has 14 total commitments, a number that's significant because the Longhorns had 15 commitments at this time last year en route to the No. 1 class for 2012.
It should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with recruting that all of Texas' commitments come from within its own state borders including five-star prospects in quarterback Tyrone Swoopes
(6-5/220) of Whitewright and receiver Ricky Seals-Jones
(6-5/215) of Sealy.
Swoopes and Seals-Jones look like carbon copies of one another, like a pair of NBA shooting guards. The will look to form a Jordan/Pippen tandem the next several years as teammates playing pitch and catch for Texas.
Seals-Jones will have some help at the receiver position as he is just one of three highly ranked Longhorn receiver prospects. Texas also has verbals from Jake Oliver
(6-3/185) of Dallas and Jacorey Warrick
(5-9/161) of Houston, giving Texas three of the nation's top 15 ranked receivers.
Big, tall Texans seem to be a theme this year as Texas A&M checks in at No. 3, led by 6-6, 215-pound Derrick Griffiin of Rosenberg. Griffin is Scout's fourth ranked receiver in the nation, and he's a walking mismatch with his size.
The Aggies are doing their part to prepare to air it out in the SEC with commitments from a pair of four-star quarterbacks in Kenny Hill
(6-0/205) of Southlake
and Kohl Stewart
(6-2/190) of Houston.
Whoever wins the job for the Aggies will have ample weapons at his disposal. In addition to the gigantic Griffin, Texas A&M has verbals from four-star receivers Jamar Gibson
(6-2/190) of Baytown and Laquivionte Gonzalez of Cedar Hill as well as top 50 WR Quincy Adeboyejo
Speaking to both the in state dominance of the two biggest programs and the sheer amount of talent in the country's top talent producing state, Texas and Texas A&M are sitting pretty without a single commitment from outside the state lines.
and Ohio State
barnstormed the Big Ten in December and January propelling the Buckeyes to the No. 3 class in the nation for 2012 after flirting with being outside the Top 25. Meyer and the Buckeyes have picked up where they left off in February and are already in the Top 5, led by in-state product Jalin Marshall
(6-1/190) of Middletown.
Marshall is a quarterback for his
squad who projects at several positions well on the next level but is likely best at running back. Recruited for the Percy Harvin
role that Meyer implemented at Florida
, Marshall is a terrific fit. While Harvin was known as a receiver, he did the bulk of his damage at Florida running the ball.
While the state of Ohio is fifth in the nation in producing Division I signees, Meyer has taken Ohio State national, including a commitment from five-star defensive end Joey Bosa
(6-5/262) of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., quarterback J.T. Barrett
(6-2/205) of Wichita Falls, Texas and tight end Marcus Baugh
(6-4/235) of Riverside, Calif.
rounds out the early Top 5, and it looks like the Irish are making a concerted effort to bolster the line of scrimmage. Of Notre Dame's 12 commitments, five of them are on the offensive line, including two tackles in the Top 10 in Colin McGovern
(6-6/292) of New Lenox, Ill. and Steven Elmer (6-6/297) and the nation's No. 2 guard John Montelus
Conspicuously absent from the Top 5 is a traditional team from the SEC, but as usual, there are several teams lurking who will make a charge at the No. 1 overall spot before all is said and done, including No. 6 Georgia
, No. 7 Florida and No. 8 Alabama
has recruited extremely well under coach Jimbo Fisher and the Seminoles check in at No. 9 with the ACC's top position.
Rounding out the Top 10 is USC
despite only having five commitments at this time. The Trojans are hampered by scholarship limitations, but they've had little trouble convincing top players around the country to commit, including the nation's No. 1 quarterback Max Browne
(6-5/215) of Sammamish, Wash.
Scott began with Scout as the Southeast Regional Manager in 2002. In addition to his recruiting responsibilities, Scott developed and ran the National Scout Combine series from 2005 thru 2008. Scott has been Director of Scouting since 2006 and oversees the Recruiting Rankings for Scout.
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