Recruit rankings: Cougs trending right way

IF THE FOOTBALL recruiting season ended today, Washington State's crop of commits would rank No. 41 nationally, just behind Virginia and just ahead of Miami, in Scout.com projections. That would amount to a sizeable improvement for the Cougs compared with their 2012 and 2011 rankings. But it'll take another standout or two to eclipse the 2010 class.

Scout.com's final rankings of 2012 and 2011 had WSU slotted at 53rd and 57th, respectively. The 2010 class for Ol' Wazzu, however, came in at No. 40 on the strength of players such as C.J. Mizell, Aaron Dunn, Connor Halliday, Marquess Wilson, Jake Rodgers and John Fullington.

WSU's current No. 41 rank is a big jump from mid-50ish range it had been much of the fall. The higher rank has been fueled by touted recent verbals such as Paulo Lepua, Daquawn Brown and Lyman Faolin, and improved individual ranks for several earlier verbals.

In terms of the Pac-12 schools, the Cougs currently rank eighth -- the same as last year. WSU is a tad behind Cal (38th) and Arizona State (37th), a bit in front of Utah (46th), and well ahead of Oregon State (53rd), Stanford (55th) and Colorado (71st).

The five other Pac-12 teams are currently in the top 30 in the nation: USC 7th, UCLA 10th, UW 11th, Arizona 23rd and Oregon 27th.

2013 COUGAR VERBALS


For the complete WSU recruiting class list, CLICK HERE.


And for a look at the prospects who could join them in the class, CLICK HERE.
The numbers could fluctuate dramatically between now and Signing Day for the two simple reasons: 1) verbal commitments are non-binding and five weeks remain until letters of intent are signed; and 2) most schools are still far from full at this stage; WSU, for instance, appears to have 4-5 slots left when oversigning is factored.

HISTORICALLY SPEAKING, WSU's current class falls at the upper end of the program's typical national placement on LOI Day. If you throw out the aberrations at each end -- No. 21 in 2004 and No. 74 in 2008 -- you'll find that the 40s and 50s tend to be crimson country during the first week of February.

And for the record, that touted 2004 class turned out to be a bust of seismic proportion, illustrating one more time how this whole thing can be more crapshoot than science.

Indeed, the 1999 WSU class -- while universally rated in the 30s nationally -- was also pegged by most observers at between eighth and tenth in the Pac-10. That class wound up being the backbone for the Cougars' three consecutive 10-win seasons from 2001-03. And that trifecta, by the way, marked the first time a Pac-10 school had strung together three straight 10-win seasons since the 1930s.

WSU'S NATIONAL RECRUITING RANKING HISTORY:

• 2012 –- 53rd, just behind Indiana and ahead of Syracuse
• 2011 –- 57th, just behind Maryland and ahead of Indiana
• 2010 –- 40th, just behind Arizona and ahead of Georgia Tech
• 2009 –- 43rd, just behind Clemson and ahead of Baylor
• 2008 –- 74th, tied with Vandy, just behind UTEP and ahead of Troy
• 2007 –- 54th, just behind Connecticut and ahead of Kansas State
• 2006 –- 45th, just behind Boston College and ahead of BYU
• 2005 –- 47th, just behind Kansas State and ahead of Georgia Tech
• 2004 –- 21st, just behind North Carolina State and ahead of Washington
• 2003 –- 58th, just behind West Virginia and ahead of BYU
• 2002 -- 48th, just behind Illinois and ahead of Oregon State
• 2001 –- Unable to locate
• 2000 –- Unable to locate
• 1999 –- 39th, just behind Kentucky and ahead of Illinois

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