Recapping Signing Day Around The Big East

Pony Stampede Managing Editor Billy Embody breaks down how SMU's opponents fared on signing day. Come inside to see how the Ponies compare!

1. Rutgers

Commits: 22

Average Star Rating: 2.91

Best Signee: Four-Star OG Dorian Miller; 6-foot-3, 285-pounds. Miller turned down offers from Boston College, Georgia Tech, Maryland, North Carolina, South Florida, Tennessee and Virginia. The Metuchen product is the 13th ranked guard in the country.

Recap: 15 of Rutgers' 22 commitments are on the defensive side of the ball, headlined by four-star cornerback Nadir Barnwell from Piscataway, NJ and three-star corner Janarion Grant from Pasco, FL. Barnwell is one of the two four-star commits in the class, but Grant has been a star since his freshman year and will be a big playmaker for Rutgers. One downside of this Rutgers class is the lack of other offensive line commits besides Miller.

2. Cincinnati

Commits: 20

Average Star Rating: 2.85

Best Signee: Four-star TE Travis Johnson, 6-foot-4, 230-pounds. The Tampa Jesuit product was one of the top receiving threats in the Bay Area and as he makes the shift to tight end in college, will be a huge target down the middle especially with his strength. Johnson turned down offers from USF, Florida and was a one time was a Miami commitment.

Recap: This Cincinnati class has two other four-star commitments in this class in prep school cornerback Mike Tyson and JUCO outside linebacker Jerrell Jordan, who will beef up the Bearcats defense immediately. The Bearcats added two quarterbacks in this class as well with three-star Tyler Cogswell and two-star Brent Stockstill that should be able to make an impact, especially Cogswell, who quarterbacked one of the best teams in the state of Florida this past year. Again, there is only one commitment along the offensive line in this class with three-star guard Ben Flick.

3. Louisville

Commits: 16

Average Star Rating: 3.00

Best Signee: Five-star WR James Quick should provide Louisville with a big spark with his ability to make people miss after the catch. Quick, at 6-foot-1, 175-pounds, has the size and speed of an outside receiver but has the elusiveness out of the slot, which allows him to be moved all over the field.

Recap: Coming off a Sugar Bowl win, Charlie Strong's staff only added 16 commitments, but the Cardinals were able to add some quality players to an already stacked team. Once the Teddy Bridgewater days are over, Quick can catch passes from four-star QB Josh Bolin, who has size at 6-foot-4 but will need to bulk up. Strong and his staff also solidified the offensive tackle position with three three-star signees at that position.

4. Houston

Commits: 26

Average Star Rating: 2.46

Best Signee: Tough to rank a class with so many three-stars, but Demarcus Ayers is the best player in this class. Even though Ayers was up in the air on where he was going for a while, he's a huge land with some big-time playmaking speed that will fit in nicely in this offense.

Recap: Houston also added Tyler John Tyler athlete Greg Ward, who will be playing cornerback in college and with his agility, should be a nice fit in the Houston defense. Houston also added another John Tyler player in 6-foot-2, 225-pound defensive end Tyus Bowser. The three-star has great speed as well and will be a big passing rushing threat. Last season, he recorded an eye-popping 24 sacks.

5. South Florida

Commits: 23

Average Star Rating: 2.57

Best Signee: Nigel Harris, a three-star outside linebacker from Tampa Hillsborough, is someone the local writers from my hometown have raved about. He was highly sought after close to signing day and he really likes Willie Taggart and his new staff, which led him to stay in his hometown. The 6-foot-2, 220-pound Harris will need to fill out, but his athletic ability was able to change games in high school.

Recap: Taggart's staff came into Tampa and started the process of closing out the other in-state recruiters from the area. Taggart added Nate Goodwin, a three-star corner from Tampa Freedom who can really make some plays. USF also got mammoth offensive guard Cameron Ruff to sign with his hometown school.

6. Connecticut

Commits: 23

Average Star Rating: 2.48

Best Signee: Kyle Schafenacker, the former SMU prospect signed with UConn and at 6-foot-5, 280-pounds brings a unique physicality to the UConn offense that has been lacking brute strength.

Recap: UConn signed three three-star middle linebackers that are all over 230 pounds, which also brings some versatility for the UConn defense, which will allow the coaches to possibly move these guys around. Three-star quarterback Tim Boyle is also a tall pocket passer for UConn to develop.

7. UCF

Commits: 18

Average Star Rating: 2.28

Best Signee: Schaquem Griffin was a stud at Lakewood high school and will be a big playmaker at corner for UCF. Playing both ways at Lakewood, the 6-foot, 170-pounder was able to matchup well against bigger receivers.

Recap: The lone three-star on offense for UCF is Micah Reed, who at 6-foot-1, 200-pounds fits the mold of UCF's bigger back Latavius Murray. Mario Mathis, a 6-foot-2, 240 pound linebacker from Georgia has a body that is ready to see the field now so look for him to possibly push for time on special teams.

8. Temple

Commits: 21

Average Star Rating: 2.00

Best Signee: Matt Barone at 6-foot-3, 270-pound provides a tough edge in the trenches for Temple at guard. Temple was able to get the three-star to switch from UConn and pledge to his in-state school.

Recap: Three-star running back Zaire Williams and outside linebacker Buddy Brown both have bodies at 5-foot-11, 200-pounds and 6-foot-2, 220-pounds respectively that could see the field early at Temple in rotating capacities.

9. Memphis

Commits: 33

Average Star Rating: 1.97

Best Signee: Three-star quarterback Brayden Scott at 6-foot-1, 195-pounds leads the way for this class and could be the reason why Memphis football improves in the next couple of seasons.

Recap: Three-star offensive tackle George Roberts can be the one Scott will look to protect him during his time at Memphis and at 6-foot-5, 280-pounds, has the size to push for playing time. Tampa Carrollwood Day two-star speedy running back Robert Davis signed with Memohis and if he can bulk up with his speed in tact, could be dangerous on jet sweeps early.

***SMU currently ranks 7th in the Big East, ahead of UCF

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