Top 15 College Football Recruiting Classes For 2013
Top 15 College Football Recruiting Classes for 2013
The 2013 college football recruiting class is one of the deepest in years on the defensive side of the ball, with skill players on the offensive side being in high demand due to a relative dearth in comparison to the past. Massive defensive end Robert Nkemdiche (pictured) is the unanimous No.1 player in the class, and has verbally committed to the Clemson Tigers, but stories have surfaced that the Ole Miss Rebels are still in the mix.
To compile our top 15 college football recruiting classes for 2013, we developed a composite of the class rankings from three of the most well-respected lists: Scout, Rivals, and ESPN, to come up with a comprehensive ranking that you'll see coming up. We saw a few outliers, and these were removed for the integrity of the rankings to give the best possible picture of who's doing what in the recruiting world. The teams with the lowest overall score based on the sum of all three rankings were among the Top 5. There were two very clear standouts.
As expected, the rankings were heavily dominated by SEC programs as it appears their dominance not only on the field of play, but also in the living rooms of families and prospective players, will continue for at least another few seasons. SEC schools have plenty to sell, and for that matter, practically sell themselves. Everyone else is clawing at their heels, but a few programs are making some headway.
Check out our Top 15 classes and let us know what you think in the Facebook comments below!
North Carolina Tar Heels
The North Carolina Tar Heels were perhaps the biggest surprise of the 15 teams in our rankings. With five four-star recruits and a boatload of solid three stars guys from the south, the Tar Heels have crafted a solid 2013 recruiting class that could be a sign of good things to come for a program that hasn't quite been able to get in the mix in the ACC in recent years.
POWER INDEX: 49
TOP RECRUITS: DT Greg Webb (Sicklerville, NJ) and DB Brian Walker (Charlotte, NC)
South Carolina Gamecocks
The South Carolina Gamecocks enter our list at No. 14 and are the first, but certainly not the last team, from the dominant SEC. After scoring one of the top recruits of the 2011 class, all-everything defensive end Jadaveon Clowney, Steve Spurrier's cache has gone through the roof. A recent dismantling of the Georgia Bulldogs certainly didn't hurt either, as the Gamecocks turn their attention and sales pitches toward a 2014 class that could be even better than their 2013 haul.
POWER INDEX: 44
TOP RECRUITS: Larenz Bryant, LB (Charlotte, NC) and Kelsey Griffin, DT (Hoschton, GA)
The beat rolls on for Clemson Tigers head coach Dabo Swinney as he continues to establish himself as one of the country's premier recruiters. Now, if that consistent recruiting could only turn into consistent success on the field. For now, the Tigers have a commitment from the top player in the 2013 class, DE Robert Nkemdiche, who is also rumored to have interest in the Ole Miss Rebels for a variety of reasons. Regardless of what the big man decides, Swinney has put together a masterful class for 2013, 7 four star players.
POWER RATING: 37
TOP RECRUITS: DE Robert Nkemdiche (Loganville, GA) and LB Dorian O'Daniel (Olney, MD)
Florida State Seminoles
Jimbo Fisher's Florida State Seminoles had their first disappointing loss of their 2012 season last weekend in losing to the North Carolina State Wolfpack, but there certainly is no disappointment in the quality of their 2013 recruiting class. Consisting of eight four-star players, which lean heavily toward the offensive side of the ball, the Seminoles shouldn't skip a beat in 2013-- at least on paper.
POWER RATING: 37
TOP RECRUITS: LB E.J. Levenberry Jr. (Woodbridge, VA) and RB Ryan Green (St. Petersburg, FL)
No stranger to top recruiting class lists, the Texas Longhorns have again assembled a large majority of the first-tier talent in a talent-rich state for their 2013 class. A good mix of skill players on the offensive side of the ball and impact potential guys on the defensive side should help the Longhorns continue to bolster a roster which could help lead the team back to prominence sooner than later. For Texas it can be about selecting the state's first-tier talent rather than recruiting them, and 2013 isn't an exception.
POWER RATING: 29
TOP RECRUITS: DT A'Shawn Robinson (Fort Worth) and QB Tyrone Swoopes (Whitewright)
Although they're struggling mightily on the field so far in 2012, the Auburn Tigers aren't missing a beat on the recruiting warpath. It's a good thing the Tigers put this class together as quickly as they did, especially considering the warmth of the seat below Gene Chizik's backside these days. Regardless, there is plenty of southern talent headed to Auburn in the fall headlined by three five-star studs, and it should only be a matter of time before the Tigers are back in the SEC mix.
POWER RATING: 27
TOP RECRUITS: LB Reuben Foster (National No. 2 Overall Player) (Auburn, AL) and DE Carl Lawson (National No. 4 Overall Player) (Alpharetta, GA)
Texas A&M Aggies
As the new kid on the block in the SEC, the Texas A&M Aggies have a few rough weeks ahead, but with the strong play of QB Johnny Manziel and his supporting cast, it's obvious there are some good times ahead in College Station. The move to the SEC appears to be paying some big-time dividends for the Aggies as they arguably had the strongest recruiting class in the Lone Star State for 2013, hauling nine four-star guys, several of whom should make an instant impact at Kyle Field.
POWER RATING: 27
TOP RECRUITS: WR Derrick Griffin (Rosenberg) and DT Isaiah Golden (Carthage)
Mark Richt's Georgia Bulldogs suffered a tough defeat last weekend against the South Carolina Gamecocks, but still have one of the more talented young cores of any team in the SEC. With a 2013 recruiting class that includes 10 four-start talents, Dawg Nation certainly has plenty to look forward to in coming seasons. Georgia's a nice draw for a prospective student-athlete, and will continue to be so for the foreseeable future. It's one of the SEC's gems, and the results speak for themselves.
POWER RATING: 22
TOP RECRUITS: DB Tray Matthews (Newnan, GA) and WR Reggie Davis (Tallahassee, FL)
The SEC beat rolls on as the LSU Tigers land at No. 7 on our list of the top 2013 college football recruiting classes. Les Miles does a great job year-to-year selling Baton Rouge, but there's not a ton of sales to be done. A Saturday in Death Valley is as loud and exciting as any destination in the country, and just about any kid in East Texas, Louisiana, and the South who's worth his salt considers LSU at some point. A 2013 class that includes 13 four-star players is proof.
POWER RATING: 21
TOP RECRUITS: DB Tre'Davious White (Shreveport, LA) and OL Ethan Pocic (Lemont, IL)
Ohio State Buckeyes
In spite of being on probation this season, the Ohio State Buckeyes aren't skipping a beat on the recruiting trails. This is still one of the most tradition-rich, and historical programs in college football after all, and a major draw for Midwestern and Northeastern primo talent alike. Urban Meyer and his staff have corralled a total of 12 four-star players who could come in and provide some nice depth to a young Buckeyes squad in 2013.
POWER RATING: 20
TOP RECRUITS: DB Eli Woodard (Voorhees, NJ) and DB Cameron Burrows (Trotwood, OH)
Notre Dame Fighting Irish
So, I think it's time to stop all the "Notre Dame has lost it's relevancy" talk. It's obvious the Fighting Irish under charasmatic new head coach Brian Kelly, have never been more relevant, and the nation's first-tier talent is again starting to take notice. These things are cyclical, after all, and Notre Dame should ride the crest of a new wave of interest for several seasons to come.
POWER RATING: 14
TOP RECRUITS: LB Jaylon Smith (Fort Wayne, IN) and LB Alex Anzalone (Wyomissing, PA)
Alabama Crimson Tide
There's not a whole lot to say about the Alabama Crimson Tide that hasn't already been said. The tradition, pagentry, and success that surrounds their program is some of the best in college football. The program recruits itself and as long as Nick Saban is walking the campus in Tuscaloosa, this will continue. Love em or hate em, you have to respect the Tide. The 2013 class is our third-best and could be one of the best in some time-- and that's saying something.
POWER RATING: 13
TOP RECRUITS: TE O.J. Howard (Autauga, AL) and RB Altee Tenpenny (North Little Rock, AR)
Brady Hoke's Michigan Wolverines will be looking to reload in 2013, and with a class consisting of one five-star and 14 four-star guys, they'll be doing just that. On paper, this class makes Michigan a huge threat to become the power of the Big 10 in a matter of time, but as we all know, paper recruiting classes don't always pan out on the turf. This one, however, is as good as they get.
POWER RATING: 5
TOP RECRUITS: QB Shane Morris (Warren, MI) and DT Henry Poggi (Baltimore, MD)
There should be little surprise that the USC Trojans are No. 1 on our list of 2013's best college football recruiting classes. Lane Kiffin continues to haul in the best classes in the country from year to year. Let's see -- Los Angeles. First-class education. Beautiful weather. Legendary social scene. Check. Check. Check. Check. Enough said really.
POWER RATING: 4
TOP RECRUITS: DB S'ua Cravens (Marietta, CA) and QB Max Browne (Sammamish, WA)