by Dave Miller
May 20, 02013
With the dog days of summer on the horizon and the start of a new college football season still off in the distance, let's take a look at how the best Class of 2014 recruiting classes are shaping up across the country.
Of course, no recruit is required to attend his school of choice until his National Letter of Intent is faxed in, which occurs for most players on National Signing Day. But, as of now, here is the National Football Post's Class of 2014 Top 25 team recruiting rankings entering the summer months.
1. Michigan: Brady Hoke, Greg Mattison and Co. continue to land high-quality talent on the recruiting trail. The latest major addition to this stellar class was defensive end Lawrence Marshall. He joins defensive tackle Bryan Mone and linebacker Michael Ferns as difference-makers on that side of the ball. Offensively, tight end Ian Bunting and wide receivers Drake Harris and Maurice Ways will fit into the pro-style offense of coordinator Al Borges, who also will have quarterback Wilton Speight coming to Ann Arbor.
US PRESSWIRELes Miles was able to get a verbal pledge from top JUCO WR D'haquille Williams.
2. LSU: JUCO wide receiver D'haquille Williams was a huge "get" for Les Miles and Co., as he should make an instant impact in Baton Rouge. He joins Louisiana natives Jacory Washington (tight end) and Devin Voorhies (safety). Linebacker Sharieff Rhaheed and safety Edward Paris are also headliners.
3. Texas: The Longhorns have lost the commitments of a few prospects, including running back Daniel Gresham. But Mack Brown and his staff have a large class right now with 11 pledges, including defensive end Derick Roberson. Quarterback Jerrod Heard along with wide receiver Lorenzo Joe and running back Donald Catalon headline the offensive haul.
4. Notre Dame: Brian Kelly and the Fighting Irish continue to stockpile talent along the offensive line, which has been an area of concern in terms of depth. Tackle Alex Bars recently joined fellow O-Linemen Sam Mustipher, Quenton Nelson and Jimmy Byrne in this class. And Elijah Hood is one of the nation's top running backs.
5. Texas A&M: The Aggies currently have 10 commitments, including outside linebacker Hoza Scott, safety Dylan Sumner-Gardner and cornerback Cedric Collins. They have made the defensive backfield a priority, and they are holding their own against programs that have dominated the area such as Texas and Oklahoma. Aggies head coach Kevin Sumlin is building something special in College Station.
6. Florida: The Gators have two nice offensive pieces in this class with running back Dalvin Cook and dual-threat quarterback Will Grier. Tackle Anthony Moten headlines the defensive side of the ball. Will Muschamp and his staff would love to add offensive tackle David Sharpe and arguably the top receiver in the nation, Ermon Lane. Expect the Gators to close strong.
7. Tennessee: Butch Jones is working wonders for the Vols and he hasn't even coached a game in Knoxville yet. The Vols' 2014 haul is led by running back Jalen Hurd and safety Todd Kelly Jr., two of the best nationally at their positions. Offensive lineman Orlando Brown Jr. was a nice "get" because of his high ceiling, and Jones has shown that he can cover a lot of ground too, as he has prospects from Ohio, Virginia, Georgia, Florida and Maryland in the fold.
8. Florida State: The Seminoles added to their class late Saturday night/early Sunday morning when wide receiver Markell Pack gave a verbal commitment. FSU has pledges from receivers Pack and Florida natives J.C. Jackson, JoJo Robinson and C.J. Worton in this class. Inside linebacker Kain Daub and linemen Blake McClain and Demarcus Christmas lead the defensive haul.
9. Alabama: The Crimson Tide will likely shoot up these rankings by the time National Signing Day rolls around next February, but for now Nick Saban and his staff sit at No. 9. In-state linebacker Shaun Dion Hamilton was a very good recent pick-up, and he'll join one of the country's top running backs Bo Scarbrough, who was the first member of the 2014 class when he committed last September. Georgia teammates Kalvaraz Bessent and Chris Williams are very good defensive backs.
10. Ohio State: Urban Meyer continues to put his mark on the OSU program, landing a pledge from Michigan cornerback Damon Webb, who many believed would end up with the Wolverines. Linebackers Sam Hubbard and Kyle Berger will strengthen the defense, while running back Parris Campbell Jr. is a speedster who will excel in space.
11. Miami (FL): The Hurricanes still don't know their NCAA fate, but that hasn't stopped Al Golden and his staff from doing a magnificent job on the recruiting trail since investigators arrived in Coral Gables. Joseph Yearby is a Top 5 national running back, and he switched his commitment from Florida State. He will be blocked by an offensive line haul that is led by tackle Kc McDermott and Nick Linder, who is the younger brother of Hurricanes offensive guard Brandon Linder.
12. Ole Miss: All eyes are on the Rebels to see if Hugh Freeze and his staff can bring in a second consecutive uniquely strong class. So far, so good. Offensive guard Andy Bauer headlines the nine-player class, while in-state commits D.K. Buford (running back) and C.J. Hampton (safety) are two of six pledges from the state.
CONTINUE TO PAGE 2 TO SEE NOS. 13-25 IN THE CLASS OF 2014 TEAM RECRUITING RANKINGS