6 Schools Very Quietly Putting Together Great 2013 Recruiting Classes
We all tend to look at the sexy and sparkling classes with superstar recruits at the juggernaut recruiting schools. Sure, we know that USC has a great class, Michigan is recruiting at an amazing pace, Alabama, Florida and Georgia are doing well and Auburn is surging up the rankings and more.
How about the schools that are doing a great job but in a less flashy way? You know the schools that are building good future teams without much attention shed their way or schools who usually don't recruit well having a solid year?
Well, here are six programs that are quietly enjoying a great 2013 recruiting cycle.
6. Ole Miss
Steve Spurrier can take as a many pot shots at Ole Miss as he wants, but Hugh Freeze is still doing well in recruiting.
The Rebels have 18 commits and four are inside the ESPNU 300. I also think they will eventually land stud safety Antonio Conner before this cycle is over.
QB Ryan Buchanan is big time around the state and Antonio Allen is coming Indiana to be a Rebel. Tip your hat to Freeze as he could land a top 25 class next February.
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The Huskies surged late last cycle and found themselves on several top 25 class lists. This year, Steve Sarkisian and Tosh Lupoi are using that momentum to do it even bigger.
The Dawgs have 16 commits and two are ESPNU 150 prospects in Darrell Daniels and Demore'ea Stringfellow. They even have another QB in Troy Williams coming and DL Elijah Qualls is a load.
Washington is quietly piping good talent to Montlake right now and not many are hip to it yet.
4. Virginia Tech
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The Hokies aren't a school that every prospect considers nor what I usually refer to as "sexy." Yet, they get players that fit their mold and go win 10 games a year and play in big-time bowl games.
This year, they're doing that yet again and Frank Beamer's class is led by OLB Holland Fisher. The Hokies hold 14 commitments and four are inside the ESPNU 300.
Quietly, VaTech is lacing its roster in Blacksburg with solid talent, like it always does.
3. South Carolina
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The Gamecocks have a top 25 class right now and it has a bit more star power than given credit for.
With 19 commitments and four being ESPNU 300 prospects, Steve Spurrier is quietly hauling in good talent to Columbia without much fanfare.
It starts with LBs Larenz Bryant and Mat Rolin, then you get QB Connor Mitch and OL D.J. Park. The Gamecocks program has seen a steady upgrade in talent and that's allowed them to contend in the SEC East.
It doesn't appear that's going to be stopping soon.
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The Sooners have a top 15-caliber class, but it's like nobody is paying much attention. That may be because Texas and Texas A&M are doing so well this cycle and their Big 12 rivals are outshining them.
But with a 13-man class and six being inside the ESPNU 300, OU has nothing to sneeze at all. They have a pair of RBs that are national top 100 level players in Keith Ford and Greg Bryant.
QB Cody Thomas is a big-time arm talent with a high ceiling and DE D.J. Ward is a productive pass-rusher. Oklahoma is not going anywhere and that's thanks to a quietly good recruiting class it's putting together.
1. North Carolina
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Larry Fedora and his staff are working the Carolina region and also are going anywhere and everywhere to find good talent.
There's no reason as to why UNC shouldn't be an upper-echelon program as they have what it takes to win there in my opinion.
Currently, Fedora has 14 commitments and four are ESPNU 300 prospects. CB Brian Walker is the headliner along with recent Penn State decommit Greg Webb, a stout DT from New Jersey.
UNC has the facilities, academics, BCS affiliation and more to attract talent to Chapel Hill. Fedora and his staff are quietly showing that this 2013 recruiting cycle.
Edwin Weathersby has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants, Cleveland Browns and the Las Vegas Gladiators of the Arena League. He spent a year evaluating prep prospects & writing specific recruiting and scouting content articles for Student Sports Football (now ESPN Rise-HS). A syndicated scout and writer, he's also contributed to WeAreSC.com, GatorBait.net and Diamonds in the Rough Inc., a College Football and NFL Draft magazine.