Scout's Top 25 Recruiting Classes

Jan. 25 -- With National Signing Day approaching, Scout's No. 1 team ranking has already changed hands twice in the last week. There are bound to be more changes, but here is a look at the nation's top 25 classes with just over a week to go...

1. LSU

The commitments of five-star defensive tackle Rashard Lawrence and four-star offensive tackle Willie Allen recently raised the Tigers back up to the top spot. Incredibly, 14 of the Tiger commitments come from Louisiana as Les Miles and company have locked down their borders. Five-star Saivion Smith, the nation's No. 2 cornerback, is among the top out of state gets. Several top prospects remain on the board including cornerback Trayvon Mullen, who could extend the Tigers' lead.

2. Ohio State

The Buckeyes recently flipped four-star quarterback Dwayne Haskins Jr. and four-star linebacker Keandre Jones from Maryland and added the nation's No. 10 wide receiver Binjimen Victor to briefly take the top spot in the national rankings last week before the Tigers stormed back. Early enrollees like four-star defensive end Jonathon Cooper and wide receiver Austin Mack could see time as true freshmen. Urban Meyer and his crew are still in pursuit of several top targets including four-star cornerback Carlos Becker and Louisville athlete commit Rodjay Burns who could allow them to issue another challenge for the top.

3. Florida

What a class for Jim McElwain so far. He has landed several major prep prospects including the potentially deadly passing combo of quarterback Feleipe Franks and wide receiver Freddie Swain, both national top 100 propsects and the nation's No. 6 safety Chauncey Gardner. Further adding to the class are several JUCO standouts including five-star running back Mark Thompson, the No. 2 junior college prospect in America and four-star wide receiver Dre Massey.

4. Michigan

No matter what you think of Jim Harbaugh's recruiting tactics, the Wolverine head man is getting results. The recent commitment of four-star Los Angeles native David Long, Scout's No. 5 cornerback, was an important one for the Wolverines. Quarterback Brandon Peters will have a bevy of weapons to work with in this class including five-star running back Kareem Walker. Both will be the beneficiaries of having Ben Bredeson, the nation's top guard prospect. The Wolverines are readying for a big close too with top national prospect Rashan Gary still on the board.

5. Notre Dame

The Fighting Irish have a strong class with plenty of opportunity to move higher before the end of the cycle. The recent commitments of four-stars Javon McKinley (No. 9 WR) and cornerback Troy Pride Jr. (No. 16 CB) pushed the class further up the rankings. Two Ohio offensive linemen, Tommy Kraemer and Liam Eichenberg have the look of future standouts in South Bend and both were top performers at their respective postseason All-Star games. Among those left on the board are one-time Michigan wide receiver commit Nathan Johnson, four-star linebacker Jonathan Jones and five-star linebacker Caleb Kelly. Land those three and the Irish would likely move to the top three.

6. Mississippi

Top recruiting classes are becoming the norm in Oxford. The Rebels have a talented class top to bottom, but it is without a doubt led by five-star offensive tackle Greg Little and five-star quarterback Shea Patterson, both Scout's top player at their respective positions and top five national prospects overall. The Rebels also kept several top in-state talents at home including the No. 3 tight end natonally, Octavious Cooley and defensive tackle Benito Jones, the No. 8 player at his position. They are still locked in a battle for another top in-state prospect, five-star defensive end Jeffery Simmons, and his commitment would move them up the list.

7. Michigan State

The Spartans have built their program under Mark Dantonio without the benefit of highly ranked national classes, but this is shaping up to be their highest ranked class ever. The skill position talent is a huge part of that as the Spartans have four four-star wide receivers, Donnie Corley and Cameron Chambers, who both enrolled early, and Justin Layne and Trishton Jackson. They will have quarterback Messiah deWeaver distributing. Of course, the Spartans did not forget defense and defensive end Josh King and defensive tackle Naquan Jones both come in from Chicago bringing four-star credentials. Land a top target down the stretch like cornerback LaVert Hill and it will seal this class as a rousing success.

8. Alabama

The Crimson Tide have been combing the country in this class as the 18 commits hail from ten different states. Leading the way is five-star defensive tackle Kendell Jones, who comes in from Texas. He is the No. 14 player nationally and No. 5 defensive tackle overall. The nation's No. 4 offensive tackle Jonah Williams will block for the natoin's No. 4 running back B.J. Emmons. Five-star JUCO offensive tackle Charles Baldwin could step right in for the Tide. They are still looking to close with several top national prospects including five-star athlete Mecole Hardman Jr.

9. Florida State

The Seminoles have an excellent defensive class coming in. Five-star cornerback Levonta Taylor, the No. 1 player at his position and rangy saety Jamel Cook lead the way. Expect JUCO defensive tackle Walvenski Aime, a mid-year enrollee, to contribute immediately. On offense, strong-armed four-star quarterback Malik Henry is one of the headliners along with the nation's No. 3 center, a very stout 340-pound road grader. 

10. Georgia

With 16 commits currently, this is the smallest of the top ten classes but there is serious quality in those 16 recruits. Five-star Jacob Eason, the nation's No. 2 quarterback and No. 7 overall player, has the makings of a future high draft choice. He will have five-star tight end Isaac Nauta to throw to as well as four-star wide receiver Cavin Ridley and 6-foot-4 JUCO target Javon Wims. Running back Elijah Holyfield is more than just a famous name and will have Army All-American Ben Cleveland to run behind. Defensively, athletic linebacker Jaleel Laguins leads the way. Five-star athlete Mecole Hardman Jr remains a top target.

11. Penn State

James Franklin's recruiting prowess has shown up again in this class. While they have lost some commitments down the stretch, their biggest coup was keeping five-star Miles Sanders, the top running back in the country, away from a Michigan State visit. Five-star offensive lineman Michal Menet and four-star defensive end Shane Simmons were both outstanding at the Under Armour All-American Game and are among the top prospects at their position nationally. Quarterback Jake Zembiec put up big numbers as a senior. Defensive backs Damar HamlinKhaleke Hudson and Jordan Fuller are remaining targets who could move this ranking higher.

12. UCLA

Eight of the top nine prospects in this class come from inside the state of California. None are ranked higher than Theo Howard, the nation's No. 7 wide receiver and No. 49 overall player and a sub-4.4 burner. Defensive end Breland Brandt and linebacker Lokeni Toailoa are both four-star propsects who are pegged as future defensive stalwarts for the Bruins. Not to be overlooked either is Canadian kicker J.J. Molson, the No. 3 kicker in the country, who could inherit the job right away. Several recent visitors, including four-star running back Damian Alloway and four-star linebacker Aaron Hansford could make this good class even better.

13. Auburn

The future of the Auburn defensive line certainly looks bright with this class as the Tigers are preapred to add four-star defensive end Marlon Davidson, disruptive four-star defensive tackle Antwuan Jackson and four-star JUCO defensive end Paul James. Another top JUCO prospect, athlete John Franklin, will get a shot to show he's the Tigers' next athletic signal caller. Whoever plays quarterback will benefit greatly from wide receiver Kyle Davis who has an NFL type frame at 6-foot-3, 217 pounds.

14. TCU

The Horned Frogs are prepared to sign one of their highest ranked recent classes. Two Scout 300 defensive linemen, end Isaiah Chambers and tackle Ross Blacklock are a big part of that, but three top 20 JUCO signees, wide receiver Taj Williams, linebacker Tyree Horton and defensive end Mat Boesen are big boosts to the group as well. The highest ranked prep prospect is outstanding athlete Sewo Olonilua, a good-sized in-state kid who could get looks at several positions.

15. Baylor

Baylor didn't have to go far to get much of this top class as many come from in-state. They have three national top 100 commits, including two outstanding wide receivers, Tren'Davian Dickson and Devin Duvernay, who has been clocked as fast as 4.32 in the forty yard dash. The third top 100 commit is guard Patrick Hudson, a 6-foot-5, 320-pounder who may compete for time sooner rather than later. Speaking of which, JUCO defensive tackle Jeremy Faulk should be out there next Fall.

16. Clemson

The Tigers are reloading for another national title run and two five-stars, defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence and running back Tavien Feaster are among the nation's top recruits. Lawrence, who is surprisingly athletic for a 335-pound kid, has all the traits to be a future 1st Round pick. The Tigers have become known for big, athletic wide receivers and Cornell Powell, 6-foot-5 Diondre Overton and 6-foot-3 Tavares Chase fit the mold.

17. North Carolina

The Tar Heels class may pay immediate dividends as several are set to enroll early including JUCO tight end J.B. Copeland and highly recruited in-state safety Myles Dorn. Joining Dorn in the secondary will be Maryland native Greg Ross and Virginia native Patrice Rene, a big, long Canadian who the Tar Heels flipped from Rutgers just weeks before Signing Day. Two other top prospects UNC grabbed out of Virginia are four-star guard Jay-Jay McCargo and 310-pound defensive tackle Kyree Campbell.

18. Oregon

A somewhat smaller class for the Ducks right now, but there is plenty of quality with six Scout 300 commits led by jumbo athlete Tristen Wallace, a 6-foot-3, 225-pounder who could play multiple positions. The Ducks recruited kids from Memphis, Hawaii, California, Texas and other states, but also kept several kids at home including two four-star teammates, safety Brady Breeze and linebacker Lamar Winston of Portland Central Catholic. The Ducks also have two quarterbacks committed, Oklahoma native Terry Wilson and in-stater Justin Herbert, a 6-foot-5 sleeper who had a big senior season.

19. Texas Tech

The Red Raiders are bringing in more offensive firepower, led by JUCO wideout Derrick Willies, a one-time Iowa player who brings 6-foot-4 size and plenty of athleticism.He will be joined by fellow JUCO receiver DeQuan Bowman and 6-foot-4 in-stater T.J. Vasher. Athletic four-star quarterback Jett Duffey will be the beneficiary of those weapons. They didn't forget defense though, as in-state edge rusher Houston Miller, a four-star prospect and 333-pound JUCO defensive tackle Mychealon Thomas instantly fortify the front seven.

20. Stanford

The Cardinals are no stranger to good quarterback play and tight end play and the class starts right there with the nation's No. 2 tight end Kaden Smith and No. 6 quarterback K.J. Costello, who should form a deadly duo for them. Sure-handed, athletic wide receiver Simi Fehoko comes in from Utah as an Army All-American and has acrobatic ability. Two four-star offensive tackles Henry Hattis and Clark Yarbrough will help keep Costello upright to distribute the ball to those playmakers. Defensively, the class is led by top five linebacker Curtis Robinson and disruptive defensive tackle Mike Williams.

21. Tennessee

Butch Jones is set to sign another good group of recruits. The headliner is the nation's No. 3 quarterback Jarrett Guarantano, who comes in from Jersey and big athlete Marquez Callaway, who has the length and skills to play receiver or defensive back. Two four-star JUCO signees, defensive tackle Alexis Johnson and cornerback D.J. Henderson will compete immediately in the spring. Four-star running back Carlin Fils-Aime brings speed up from Florida.

22. Wisconsin

The Badgers are signing a classic Badgers class. It starts up front with Midwestern offensive linemen like the nation's No. 5 offensive tackle, Cole Van Lanen from Green Bay and Patrick Kasl, a Minnesota kid the Badgers held the Gophers off for. Running behind them is bruiser Sam Brodner who rushed for 47 touchdowns as a senior and runs a 4.49 forty. Defensively, defensive tackle Garrett Rand and linebacker Griffin Grady, two four-stars, lead the way. 6-foot-7 defensive tackle Isaiahh Loudermilk played 8-man ball in Kansas and brings big time size and athleticism. Watch out too for athlete Kendric Pryor, who had a big season at Homewood-Flossmoor near Chicago.

23. Texas A&M

The Aggies only have 16 commits right now, so they could see this class ranking rise as we move closer to Signing Day. The Aggies have had some great pass rushers come through their doors and five-star Justin Madubuike is the next one with his 6-foot-4, 240-pound frame and 4.59 speed. Another speedy edge rusher, Mark Jackson. will form a dangerous combo with Madubuike. Behind them, four-star corners Charles Oliver and Travon Fuller will be another strong duo. Offensively, wide receiver Clyde Leflore and 6-foot-7 offensive tackle Kellen Diesch are both four-sar prospects.

24. Duke

The Blue Devils are continuing to make big strides under David Cutcliffe and it shows in this recruiting class. After finishing 67th and 70th the last two years on Scout, they are poised to finish in the top 25 this year. Four-star wide receiver Scott Bracey, a national top 150 prospect and three other Scout 300 commits, safety Dylan Singleton, tight end Mark Birmingham, and outside linebacker Brandon Hill, also boost the class standing. Outside the four-star range, two in-state commits, Mark Gilbert, a cover corner and running back Elijah Deveaux have the look of future standouts for the Cutcliffe.

25. USC

The Trojans are accustomed to being higher on this list, but they only have 13 commits currently, so expect this ranking to go up. There is serious quality over quantity in a class that currently has three five-stars, defensive end Oluwole Betiku, athlete Michael Pittman, and the nation's No. 1 wide receiver, Tyler Vaughns. Fellow wide receiver Josh Imatorbhebhe is one of the best athletes in the country. Speaking of best athletes, five-star, No. 1 ATH in the country Jack Jones is still on the board and could give the Trojans a fourth 5-star in their class.


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