Grading the ACC's Recruiting Classes

A closer look at each recruiting class in the Atlantic Coast Conference for 2009.

UNC: A+
UNC head coach Butch Davis landed a dynamite class full of depth with some nice top-end talent. Playmakers at the skill positions, beef in the trenches, and impact players on defense; this is a great class.

Best Player: Donte Moss – Monster pass-rushing end that will be a great player in a year or two. He should benefit from playing next to talented defensive tackles like Austin.

Miami: A-
The Canes always recruit well and the top end of the class has a bunch of future stars. The depth is slightly lacking, but the overall talent is quite good. The only fault is that the class isn't as balanced as it could be.

Best Player: Jamal Reid – Super athlete that could play a number of positions. Shined when put up against the best in the nation and looked every bit the part.

FSU: A-
A good class for the Noles headlined by some talented defensive players. I have some concerns regarding their OL recruiting. While they have nice players at the skill positions, it isn't overly scary.

Best Player: Jacobbi McDaniel – It's not often that a true freshman can start at DT, but this freak of nature not only could, but could be dominant.

Duke: B+
Yes, a B+. Ok, so their class isn't as good as some of the others in the ACC, but for Duke, this class is stellar and that warrants a curve. The Devils got a few studs and a ton of sleepers that will raise Duke's talent level across the board.

Best Player: Walt Canty – I wish the Tigers had pushed earlier and harder. This sleeper has all-ACC talent and has the best upside of any prospect the Devils landed.

Virginia Tech: B+
Beamer continues to pile up the deep classes. A nice mix of top-end talent, depth across the board, and sleepers. While some of their recruits may be reaches, Beamer has a track record of developing underappreciated recruits.

Best Player: Logan Thomas – A freak of an athlete that could play any of a half-dozen positions and excel. I like him to continue what is a rich tight end tradition at VT.

Clemson: B
Short on numbers, but long on talent. The Tigers add impact players at the big positions and shore up depth at others. This class could have a significant rating change depending on how the class of 2010 complements it.

Best Player: Malliciah Goodman – If he can dedicate himself in practice and drills, he could leave Clemson as a better end than Gaines Adams.

Georgia Tech: B
Paul Johnson's first recruiting class in Atlanta is a good one. A slightly above average class begins looking like a very good class when plugged into his system and philosophies. If he can sustain this, the Jackets could be dangerous for years to come.

Best Player: J.C. Lanier – A talented DT that could be a special player if motivated properly. Expect Johnson to get him to stop taking plays off.

Maryland: B-
The Terps landed some outstanding depth at various positions. However, the top-flight prospects are somewhat lacking and don't have a lot flash. It's an above-average class, but nothing special.

Best Player: DeOnte Arnett – Arguably the best player in the state, he's a run-stuffing defensive end. Very strong at the point of attack.

N.C. State: C+
A prototypical Tom O'Brien class. Not a lot that makes you ooh and aah and a noticeable absence of prime athletes, but a lot of solid, fundamentally sound football players. There is a dearth of explosive playmakers, something the Pack sorely needs.

Best Player: Camden Wentz – True center prospects are hard to find and O'Brien knows how to recruit the trenches. He's a hidden gem that could be a stalwart in the ACC.

UVA: C
Not a lot to write home about here. The Cavs landed four to five prospects that will be future starters and another group of prospects that will be role players, but nearly half the class consists of depth/warm bodies. Al Groh is going to have to do some coaching up.

Best Player: Morgan Moses – A mauler of an OT. Not great in pass protection, but good enough and a dominant force from the tackle position in the run game.

Wake Forest: D+
For a team that has enjoyed as much recent success as it has, including the 2006 ACC Championship, this is a disappointing class. There are only one or two players in the entire group Clemson would even offer. Head coach Jim Grobe has a knack for getting the most out of his players and he'll need to with this group.

Best Player: Daniel Mack – The safety/linebacker tweener is an explosive athlete that loves to hit. Pursued by Clemson, but ended up in Winston-Salem.

Boston College: F
Jeff Jagodzinski's dislike for the recruiting game is clearly evident in this effort. Not only is the talent level declining, but Jags left the cupboard bare when he was fired from Boston College. There's not a lot to work with in this class, and it seems safe to say the 2010 haul needs to be better.

Best Player: Dillon Quinn – An uber-strong defensive tackle that should follow in the footsteps of BC's tradition of roadblocks in the middle of the defensive line.

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