Top Twenty Signing Day Capsules National Analyst
Posted Feb 6, 2007

Here is a closer look at the top teams entering signing day and who they have coming in next year.

1. Florida Gators 

Deonte Thompson (WR)
Torrey Davis (DT)
The big fish that got away:
Terrance Toliver (WR)
University of Florida Head Coach Urban Meyer caps off a National Championship season with the nation’s top recruiting class led by quarterbacks John Brantley and Cam Newton, running backs Chris Rainey and Bo Williams, wide receiver Joe Haden, tight end Aaron Hernandez, offensive linemen James Wilson, Michael and Maurkice Pouncey, defensive tackles Torrey Davis and John Brown, defensive ends Carlos Dunlap and Justin Trattou, linebackers Lorenzo Edwards and Brandon Hicks, safeties Major Wright and Jerimy Finch, and cornerback Ahmad Black. Nobody thought that Meyer and his staff could duplicate would they did last year in recruiting. They were right. This class is better, or at least so on paper. The Gators are bringing in nine five-star recruits and ten members of the National Top 100. This class filled their needs and Florida brought in more speed and great athletes from top to bottom. Wow.

“The Gators got on a roll early and late,” said National Recruiting Analyst Jamie Newberg. “They got a huge recruiting boost early with all those prospects from Lakeland (Fla.) High School and captured recruiting momentum late after winning the national championship. They have balance from top to bottom and lot of great athletes with speed. This has to be one of the top recruiting classes of this decade, at least on paper.”

Florida Commitments

2. LSU Tigers

Chad Jones (S)
Terrance Toliver (WR)
The big fish that got away:
Jason Peters (DE)
One thing LSU Head Coach Les Miles has proven is he can recruit. Even after losing some coaches like offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher (to FSU), Miles and company were able to secure one of the nation’s top recruiting classes. Quarterback Jarrett Lee, fullback Stevan Ridley, wide receivers Ron Brooks, Terrance Toliver and DeAngelo Benton, tight ends Mitch Joseph, Jordan Corbin and Alex Russian, offensive linemen Jarvis Jones, D’Montreal Wilson, and T-Bob Hebert, defensive tackles Joseph Barksdale, Drake Nevis, and Will Blackwell, defensive end Sidell Corley, safety Stefoin Francois, and cornerbacks John Williams and Phelon Jones are a talented and balanced group headed to Baton Rouge. The Tigers failed to sign a linebacker and also cut defensive end Luther Davis.

“LSU is consistently one of the recruiting forces in college football and the Tigers put together another great class this season,” said National Recruiting Analyst Jamie Newberg. “LSU landed great prospects at just about every position and once again the Tigers are just loaded.”

LSU Commitments


3. USC Trojans

Joe McKnight (RB)
Everson Griffen (DE)
The big fish that got away:
James Wilson (OG)
How good is this USC class? They average ten less commitments than everyone else in the top 10 and they find themselves sitting at number three. The Trojans landed five stars recruits in quarterback Aaron Corp, running backs Joe McKnight and Marc Tyler, offensive tackle Martin Coleman, center Kristofer O’Dowd, defensive end Everson Griffen, defensive tackle Da’John Harris, linebacker Chris Galippo, cornerback Ronald Johnson and safety Marshall Jones. That’s almost a five star at every position. WOW! To take it one step further O’Dowd, Griffen and Galippo are the top rated prospects at their respective positions and Griffen is the nation’s top overall prospect. Other standouts headed to Southern Cal are wide receiver Brandon Carswell, defensive end Michael Reardon and linebackers Malcolm Smith and Jordan Campbell.

"Pete Carroll has gone outside of California again to reel in some of the nation's truly elite prospects," said National Recruiting Analyst Allen Wallace. "He's bringing in the nation's No. 1 prospect at both center (Kristopher O'Dowd) and defensive end (Everson Griffen), both from Arizona. Although the Trojans lost coveted defensive back Donovan Warren to the Michigan Wolverines, they succeeded in signing highly-coveted Michigan athlete Ronald Johnson. The Trojans have also done very well in California. Linebacker Chris Galippo, running back Marc Tyler and quarterback Aaron Corp lead the latest hit parade into USC."

USC Commitments

4. Texas Longhorns 

Tray Allen (OG)
Curtis Brown (CB)
The big fish that got away:
John Brantley (QB)
Texas had 20 or so commitments before the May Evaluation Period. That’s amazing. The Longhorns were able to hold onto most of them but they did lose quarterback John Brantley to the Gators. Wide receivers John Chiles, James Kirkendoll and Malcolm Williams, tight ends Blaine Irby, Ian Williams and Ahmard Howard, offensive linemen Tray Allen, Michael Huey and Aundre McGaskey, defensive tackle Andre Jones, defensive end Russell Carter, linebacker Keenan Robinson, and defensive backs Curtis Brown, Ben Wells, Earl Thomas and Christian Scott are all headed to Austin. Chiles, Williams, Allen, Jones, Brown and Wells are all members of the National 100. Allen is the top offensive line prospect in the nation.

"The Longhorns put this class together so early that it's easy to overlook how powerful it is," said National Recruiting Analyst Allen Wallace. "Mack Brown dominated in-state recruiting from the outset and has only one out-of-stater coming in: California All-America tight end Blaine Irby. This well-balanced effort is dominated by the nation's best offensive lineman, Tray Allen, fantastic cornerback Curtis Brown and Andre Jones, a three hundred pound defensive tackle."

Texas Commitments

5. Tennessee Volunteers

Brent Vinson (WR)
Eric Berry (CB)
The big fish that got away:
Harrison Smith (S)
The Vols are back near the top of the team recruiting rankings after slipping to No. 23 at this time last year. They loaded up at running back and wide receiver with Lennon Creer, Savion Frazier, Daryl Vareen, Dennis Rogan, Brett Vinson, Kenny O’Neal, Gerald Jones, Todd Campbell, Tyler Maples, Darnius Moore, Anthony Anderson, John Hawkins and Kevin Cooper. UT is also bringing on one offensive tackle in Darris Sawtelle and one underrated quarterback in B.J. Coleman. On the other side of the ball the Volunteers are looking very good with standouts like defensive ends Rufus Williams and Ben Martin, defensive tackles Rolando Melancon and Donald Langley, linebackers Chris Donald and Chris Walker, defensive tackles Deshaun Barnes, Eric Berry, and Art Evans.

“The Vols are back near the top in recruiting with a great haul,” said National Recruiting Analyst Jamie Newberg. “They cleaned up at running back and wide receiver and got some great ones on defense like defensive end Ben Martin, linebacker Chris Donald and cornerback Eric Berry.”

Tennessee Commitments

6. Auburn Tigers

Kodi Burns (QB)
Eltoro Freeman (LB)
The big fish that got away:
Caleb King (RB)
Tommy Tuberville and his staff have recruited as consistently as anyone and this may be one of the best Tiger recruiting classes to date. There is talent top to bottom and great balance. Quarterback Kodi Burns, running back Enrique Davis, wide receiver Chris Slaughter, tight ends Bailey Woods and Brent Slusher, offensive tackle Lee Ziemba, offensive guard Chaz Ramsey, center Ryan Pugh, defensive tackles Tim Lamb and Josh Chapman, defensive ends A.J. Greene, Antoine Carter, Wilfred Journet and Bo Harris, linebacker Eltoro Freeman, linebacker Josh Bynes, safety Jonnie Dixon and cornerback Michael Slade and Ryan Williams are all headed to the plains of Auburn.

“It appears as though Auburn will close strong on national signing day with another fantastic class including two out-of-state offensive talents in Kodi Burns, a five star quarterback from Northside High in Fort Smith, Ark., and Enrique Davis, a highly touted four star running back from Mosley High in Lynn Haven, Fla.,” said Southeastern Recruiting Analyst Miller Safrit. “At home, the Tigers locked up two of the top players in the state with center Ryan Pugh from Hoover and safety Michael McNeil from Davidson High in Mobile.”

Auburn Commitments

7. South Carolina Gamecocks 

Stephen Garcia (QB)
Cliff Matthews (DE)
The big fish that got away:
Carlos Dunlap (DE)
There is always a surprise team or two in recruiting and this season it has to be South Carolina. Head Coach Steve Spurrier and his staff have taken Gamecock recruiting to new heights. This class headed to Columbia is headlined by quarterback Stephen Garcia, running backs Brian Maddox and Eric Baker, offensive tackle Quintin Richardson, defensive ends Cliff Matthews and Travian Robertson, and safeties Chris Culliver and Mark Barnes. South Carolina is also bringing in six receivers. Twelve of their signees are from the Sunshine State and they landed a total of 25 out of state prospects.

“Some may have questioned if Steve Spurrier could get it done at South Carolina, but the recruiting class he is bringing in could answer some of those questions in a hurry,” said Southeastern Recruiting Analyst Miller Safrit. “Spurrier found some great talent and depth at every position, especially along the defensive line.”

South Carolina Commitments

8. Oregon Ducks

Carson York (OL)
Terrance Pritchett (LB)
The big fish that got away:
Anthony Boyles (WR)
The Ducks got down right defensive with a super class on the defensive side of the ball. Oregon will sign blue chippers at defensive tackle in Simi Fili and Myles Wde, defensive end in Kenny Rowe, linebackers in Terrance Pritchett, Casey Matthews, and Brandon Hanna, safety in Todd Doxey and cornerbacks in Talmadge Jackson and Anthony Gildon. Offensive tackle Carson York is their headliner on offense. Wide receivers Drew Davis and Terrence Scott, tight end David Paulson and offensive linemen Charlie Carmichael and Darrion Weems were all very coveted.

"Oregon has rebounded in strong fashion after a sub-par recruiting effort in '06," said Recruiting Analyst Allen Wallace. "The heart of Mike Bellotti's focus is the defensive line this year. Simi Fili (Utah), Myles Wade (Oregon), Kenny Rowe, Tonio Celloto and Dominic Glover (Calif.) as well as SuperPrep Juco 100 pick William Tukuafu (Arizona) bring an overload of talent to the defensive trenches. Also watch for wide receiver Drew Davis and tight end David Paulson to excel down the road for the Ducks offensively."

Oregon Commitments

9. Pittsburgh Panthers

Pat Bostick (QB)
Chris Jacobson (OG)
The big fish that got away:
Nick Sukay (S)
For the second consecutive season the Panthers are bringing in a very good recruiting class. This contingency is led by quarterback Pat Bostick, running back Lesean McCoy, Greg Williams, and Shariff Harris, fullback Henry Hynoski, wide receiver Maurice Williams, offensive tackle Dan Matha, offensive guard Chris Jacobson, center Greg Gaskins, defensive tackle Tommy Duhart, linebacker Brandon Lindsey, and safety Dom DeCicco.

"With another Top 15 class expectations will be on the rise for Dave Wannstedt and the Pittsburgh Panthers,” said East and Midwest Recruiting Analyst Bob Lichtenfels. “Will LeSean McCoy lead the Panthers to the promise land?"

Pittsburgh Commitments

10. Michigan Wolverines

Ryan Mallett (QB)
Donovan Warren (CB)
The big fish that got away:
Ronald Johnson (CB)
Michigan Head Coach Lloyd Carr does it again with another stellar class headlined by a franchise quarterback in Ryan Mallett. Also coming to Ann Arbor are stellar prospects like wide receivers Toney Clemons and J.R. Hemingway, tight ends Steve Watson and Martell Webb, center Dave Molk, defensive end Ryan Van Bergen, linebackers Austin Panter and Brandon Herron, safeties Michael Williams and James Rogers and cornerback Troy Woolfolk. Getting cornerback Donovan Warren away from USC was huge.

"A year ago fans were calling for Coach Lloyd Carr to leave, now the Wolverines have a great season and he goes out and gets a phenonmenal recruiting class led by a great quarterback from Texas named Ryan Mallett," said East and Midwest Recruiting Analyst Bob Lichtenfels.

Michigan Commitments

11. Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Jimmy Clausen (QB)
Gary Gray (CB)
The big fish that got away:
Justin Trattou (DE)
Notre Dame has one of the top offensive recruiting classes in the nation with quarterback Jimmy Clausen, running backs Armando Allen and Robert Hughes, wide receivers Duval Kamara and Golden Tate, tight end Mike Ragone and offensive linemen Emeka Nwankwo, Taylor Devor, Matt Romine and Andrew Nuss. The other side of the ball is a different story. The Irish lost defensive end Justin Trattou to Florida. Cornerback Gary Gray, safety Harrison Smith and defensive end Kerry Neal are the headliners on the Notre Dame defensive side.

"Long time Irish observers are still smarting over the unexpected loss of New Jersey defensive end Justin Trattou to Florida," said National Recruiting Analyst Allen Wallace. "Notre Dame needed to shore up its defensive line. The rest of the news for Notre Dame fans is excellent, especially from an offensive standpoint. Superior California signal caller Jimmy Clausen will have some fantastic targets in Duval Kamara, and Golden Tate. This is truly a national effort with only three of the signees from the midwest, led by Illinois runner Robert Hughes."

Notre Dame Commitments

12. California Golden Bears

Jahvid Best (RB)
D.J. Holt (LB)
The big fish that got away:
Brandon Carswell (WR)
The Bears got a little bit of everything with a balanced class. Headed to Cal are quarterback Brock Mansion, running backs Shane Vereen and Jahvid Best, wide receiver Mike Calvin, tight end Savai’I Eselu, offensive linemen Sam DeMartinis, Justin Cheadle, Matt Summers-Gavin and Mitchell Schwartz, defensive end Scott Smith, linebackers Devin Bishop, Robert Mullins and D.J. Holt, and safety Sean Cattouse.

"The Bears are putting together one of their strongest recruiting efforts in recent years," said National Recruiting Analyst Allen Wallace. "Jeff Tedford has relied heavily on California athletes but went all the way to Texas for quarterback Brock Mansion, who threw for 2,200 yards and 26 scores as a senior. Mansion will be well-complemented with skillful receivers like Mike Calvin and Alex Lagemann as well as California running backs Jahvid Best and Shane Vereen. His defensive signees are led by's No. 11 strongside linebacker, D. J. Holt."

Cal Commitments

13. Miami Hurricanes

Robert Marve (QB)
Allen Bailey (LB)
The big fish that got away:
Major Wright (S)
Even with a coaching change at the top the University of Miami had a fine recruiting season. They promoted Defensive Coordinator Randy Shannon to Head Coach and ran through a few long weeks before naming Patrick Nix their Offensive Coordinator. Despite some transition time the Hurricanes have hung in there and done well, showing that prospects out there still love the “U”. Quarterback Robert Marve, running backs Graig Cooper and Lee Chambers, wide receivers Kayne Farquharson, Leonard Hankerson, and Jermaine McKenzie, offensive lineman Harland Gunn, defensive tackle Chris Perry, defensive end Adewale Ojomo, safety Damien Berry and cornerbacks DeMarcus Van Dyke and Doug Wiggins are all very good prospects headed to Coral Gables.

“Hats off to Randy Shannon and the Hurricanes for a great recruiting effort during a time of transition at Miami,” said National Recruiting Analyst Jamie Newberg. “They land quarterback Robert Marve late and he could ultimately be the headliner of this class. The 'Canes also did well at wide receiver and defensive end/linebacker prospect Allen Bailey is as good as they come.”

Miami Commitments

14. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Jonathan Dwyer (RB)
D.J. Donley (S)
The big fish that got away:
Lorenzo Edwards (LB)
This is Georgia Tech’s best class in years. They got skill, speed and athletes from top to bottom. Headed to the Yellow Jackets are quarterbacks Josh Nesbitt and Steven Threet, running backs Jonathan Dwyer and Roddy Jones, wide receiver Willie White, offensive tackles Nick Claytor and Clyde Yandell, defensive end Derrick Morgan, linebackers Kyle Jackson, Brad Jefferson, and Albert Rocker, safeties D.J. Donley and Morgan Burnett and cornerback Mario Butler.

“Georgia Tech showed that it can flex some recruiting muscle this year by making a strong appearance at home in the Peach state including four of the top seven prospects from the state,” said Southeastern Recruiting Analyst Miller Safrit. “Josh Nesbitt and Jonathan Dwyer, a quarterback and a running back respectively, are the jewels of the class and have very high ceilings with regard to their potential and that is something Chan Gailey and staff have shown they can work on in the past.”

Georgia Tech Commitments

15. North Carolina Tar Heels

Marvin Austin (DT)
Greg Little (WR)
The big fish that got away:
Weslye Saunders (TE)

New North Carolina Head Coach Butch Davis and his staff did a very good job of retaining the commitments of the prior coaching staff and filling out the rest with some quality prospects. The Tar Heels are led by quarterback Mike Paulus, running back Ryan Houston, wide receivers Greg Little, Rashad Mason, and Dwight Jones, tight end Zack Pianalto, offensive lineman Kevin Bryant, defensive tackles Tydreke Powell and Marvin Austin, and linebackers Da’Norris Searcy, Albert Craddock and Quan Sturdivant. Look for UNC to be a regular in the top 20 recruiting rankings under Davis and company.

“You have to be impressed with what Coach Davis and his staff were able to accomplish on such short notice,” said National Recruiting Analyst Jamie Newberg. “The Tar Heels got a potential franchise type of quarterback in Mike Paulus, a big running back, three big receivers, and a mammoth offensive lineman in Kevin Bryant. Defensively Marvin Austin Tydreke Powell leads the way, as they should be is one of the nation’s top defensive tackle tandems.”

North Carolina Commitments

16. Ohio State Buckeyes

Brandon Saine (RB)
Eugene Clifford (S)
The big fish that got away:
Anthony Davis (OT)
The Buckeyes are stockpiling more talent, although it seems things would have been a little easier on the recruiting front. Still, top notch prospects like running backs Brandon Saine and Boom Herron, wide receivers Taurian Washington and Dane Sanzenbacher, defensive end Solomon Thomas, defensive tackle Cameron Heyward, linebackers Jermale Hines and Brian Rolle, safeties Eugene Clifford, Nate Oliver and Devon Torrence and cornerback James Scott are coming to Columbus.

"Jim Tressel and his staff had a limited number of scholarships, but they still managed to land a great class led by a special group of defensive backs,” said East and Midwest Recruiting Analyst Bob Lichtenfels. “Eugene Clifford and Devon Torrence may invoke memories of Chris Gamble for fans in Columbus."

Ohio State Commitments

17. Georgia Bulldogs

Caleb King (RB)
Rennie Curran (LB)
The big fish that got away:
Eric Berry (CB)
The Dawgs landed the mother load in the trenches on the offensive line as Georgia is bringing in eight offensive line prospects. That’s not sexy but it fills the big need at UGA with such standouts as offensive tackles Chris Little and Trinton Sturdivant and guards Justin Anderson and Tanner Stickland. The gem of this class has to be running back Caleb King, one of the nation’s top prospects. Coach Mark Richt is also bringing in a talented quarterback in Logan Gray, wide receivers Israel Troupe and Walter Hill, and tight ends Aron White and Bruce Figgins. Most of the emphasis of this Georgia class is on offense but the Dawgs are bringing in some defensive standouts defensive end Justin Houston, linebacker Rennie Curran, safety John Knox and cornerback Vance Cuff.

“Georgia started strong this year with sixteen of its twenty-three commitments coming before the first game of the year,” said Southeastern Recruiting Analyst Miller Safrit. “ Still, those last seven commitments include the prize of the class - running back Caleb King from Greater Atlanta Christian in Norcross, Ga. The class is also very heavy, literally. Twelve of the commitments are projected to play along either the offensive or defensive line, and that number does not even include the two tight ends this year. Georgia is hoping that at least this year, size does matter.”

Georgia Commitments

18. Penn State Nittany Lions

Stefen Wisniewski (OG)
Chris Colasanti (LB)
The big fish that got away:
LeSean McCoy (RB)
Joe Paterno and his Nittany Lions continue to recruit very well. This year’s Penn State haul includes wide receiver Derek Moye, tight ends Jon Ditto and Andrew Szczerba, offensive linemen Josh Marks, Stefen Wisniewski, and J.B. Walton, defensive end Devon Still, defensive tackle Kevion Latham, linebackers Chris Colasanti, Nathan Stupar and Andrew Dailey, safety Nick Sukay and cornerbacks Chaz Powell and Stephfon Green.

"Led by crafty Joe Paterno and a team of great recruiters like Larry Johnson and Tom Bradley the Nittany Lions once again bring in a great class,” said East and Midwest Recruiting Analyst Bob Lichtenfels. “Penn State filled their needs and picked up some fine offensive linemen."

Penn State Commitments

19. Alabama Crimson Tide

Brandon Gibson (WR)
Luther Davis (DE)
The big fish that got away:
Robert Marve (QB)

The University of Alabama finished strong under new Head Coach Nick Saban. This Tide class is led by quarterback Nick Fanuzzi, running back Jamar Taylor, fullback Jeramie Griffin, offensive lineman William Vlachos, defensive end Luther Davis, defensive tackles Josh Chapman, Alfred McCullough and Kerry Murphy, linebacker Rolando McClain and Chris Lett. Alabama did very well defensively. The SEC has always been tough in terms of recruiting and things will get much tougher with Saban in Tuscaloosa.

“I tell you what, Coach Saban and his staff jumped on all the top prospects in the region and they certainly grabbed everyone’s attention,” said National Recruiting Analyst Jamie Newberg. “Alabama just didn’t have enough time but it shows you the potential recruiting power of Saban. The Crimson Tide did exceptionally well under the circumstances to finish in the top 20. I really like what they did defensively, especially up front.”

Alabama Commitments

20. Nebraska Cornhuskers

Niles Paul (WR)
The big fish that got away:
Travis Lewis (LB)
The Big Red Machine is bringing in a big class that is balanced top to bottom. The Cornhuskers went the JuCo route once again at the quarterback position with Zach Lee. Nebraska went to Texas to land running back Marcus Mendoza and to California for running back Roy Helu. Wide receiver Niles Paul decided to stay in state with the Cornhuskers, as he is one of the top prospects in the region. Nebraska went to Arizona to land offensive tackle Jaivoria Burkes and Missouri to land defensive tackle Demetrious Davis. Linebacker Travis Lewis is a two-way standout while David Ross was one of the top defensive backs from the state of California. In all Nebraska will sign players from 11 different of states.

"Bill Callahan continues to upgrade his talent level at Nebraska, relying in particular on junior college transfers," said National Recruiting Analyst Allen Wallace. "He signed five of SuperPrep magazine's Juco 100: quarterback Zach Lee, defensive tackles Joseph Townsend and Kevin Dixon, linebacker Larry Asante and cornerback Armando Murillo. This is a very well-balanced effort which relies heavily on California (linebacker Austin Stafford, cornerback David Ross), Arizona (offensive lineman Jaivorio Burkes and running back Prince Amukamara) and Texas (running back Marcus Mendoza)."

Nebraska Commitments

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