Top 25

Here's our first edition of <B> Top 25 Team Recruiting Rankings</B>. LSU comes in at No. 1 with several recruiting powers right on their backs. Can Nick Saban and the Bayou Bengals hold on? USC, Texas, Miami, Penn State, Michigan and others will make big moves next month.

Round up the usual suspects because it is that time of year again.  It's time to start ranking the recruiting classes.  Once again LSU finds itself atop the Top 25 Team Recruiting Rankings with Signing Day seven weeks away.  But, the Tigers from the Bayou will have to hold off the charging Southern Cal Trojans and many others to try and hang on to No. 1 again.

The rankings go 25 teams deep and the following criteria were looked at  - number of commitments, total star rankings of the commitments, average star ranking of the commitments and the average player rank per class.  If a team doesn't have at least ten commitments, they were not considered.

If you look at the breakdown, LSU has the best blend of totals across the board even though teams like USC, Miami and Michigan have a higher star average and rank average.  But, LSU also has at six or seven more commitments than those three.  Again, it is subjective with a long way to go.  One thing is certain, everything will sort itself out over the next seven weeks.

Lets take a brief look at the top five, talk about some surprises and what lies ahead.

LSU is once again putting together a stellar class from top to bottom.  They currently are sitting on 18 commitments from such blue-chippers like defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey, safety Craig Steltz and center Ryan Miller.  The Tigers also went the Junior College route with five star commitments in defensive tackle Claude Wrotten and linebacker E.J. Kaule. 

Checking in at No. 2 are the Texas Longhorns.  Head Coach Mack Brown is once again assembling another solid group led by safety Andrew Kelson and a contingent of wide receivers like Jordan Shipley.  How good would this class be had quarterback Rhett Bomar picked the Longhorns instead of the Sooners?  Texas is waiting on the state's top prospect in running back Adrian Peterson but he appears to be headed out of state.

Penn State started the football season with the top class in the country at that point.  Paterno and company once again had a terrific spring and summer.  The headliner here has got to be linebacker/ fullback Dan Connor and the guys in the trenches like Greg Harrison.

For the second consecutive year, the "Men of Troy" are rolling.  Publicly they are only sitting on a dozen commitments so look for USC to clean up in January.  They are clearly the team to beat for the coveted No. 1 ranking on Signing Day.  In fact, if things fall as projected, this class could even be better than the one they had last season. 

The Hurricanes are dominating their backyard with commitments from running back standouts Charlie Jones and Bobby Washington and cornerback J.R. Bryant.  They also went to Texas and land a five-star QB in Kirby Freeman.  The ‘Canes are only sitting on 11 commitments so let's just say there will be a Hurricane warning for the next seven weeks.  Coker and company should close strong.

There are two big surprises in the top 25 – Alabama and Pittsburgh.  The Crimson Tide have been on NCAA probation and they went through a coaching change after spring football.  Things have been very tough in Tuscaloosa for new Head Coach Mike Shula, the players and fans.  But all is not lost.  Despite the adversity, Shula has done a fine job of getting commitments from the state's top prospect in wide receiver Nikita Stover and the best OL in Alabama in B.J. Stabler.

Pitt. got off to a big start and was much higher in the ratings three months ago but they have had little commitment action over the season.  Their headliners are quarterback Anthony Morelli and running back Andrew Johnson.  They should climb higher in the rankings over the coming weeks if they were to land linebacker James Bryant and some others.

Two teams to really watch over the coming weeks are Florida State and Florida.  Between them they only have thirteen commitments and expect the Seminoles and Gators to make a big move next month.

Expect the rankings to be revised each Wednesday between now and Signing Day. Top 25 Team Recruiting Rankings Top Stories