8 Reasons Why the SEC Won't Finish with No. 1 Recruiting Class for 2013
As all of us know, the SEC is the king conference in all things college football, and its fans are not shy about telling the rest of the country either. The conference's talent level gets better and better every year and the recruiting is insanely competitive.
Year in and year out, the SEC always has top classes. Whether it be Alabama's routine dominance, Florida showing off their Gator prowess, Auburn having a good year, LSU recruiting well on the Bayou or Georgia luring top talent to Athens, SEC recruiting is top notch. Even this year, newcomer Texas A&M likely has a top 15 class, plus Vanderbilt and Ole Miss could finish inside the top 25.
However, I'm here to give you eight reasons why 2013 is set to be different. Here are eight reasons why the SEC won't have the top 2013 recruiting class.
8. Michigan's Incredibly Strong Class
The Wolverines have an outstanding class this year, but of course they are not an SEC school. With their 23 commits, the Wolverines have what many feel is the No. 2 class in the country.
Taking 23 stud prospects from the SEC certainly will have a great effect on the conference's aspirations of having a member land a No. 1 recruiting class. Michigan has commitments from elite prospects like QB Shane Morris, OG Patrick Kugler, ATH Dymonte Thomas and CB Gareon Conley.
7. Four Top Uncommitted WR Prospects Could Sign with Non-SEC Schools
This is a very talented crop of receivers in 2013, and while several have already committed to schools, there is still a deep group of uncommitted prospects.
Four among my top uncommitted receivers could indeed choose to not play in the SEC. Robert Foster could choose Pitt or Ohio State, Laquon Treadwell may sign with Michigan, Stanford could land Jordan Cunningham and James Quick could sign with Louisville or Ohio State.
6. Other Top Uncommitted Recruits Could Bolt for Non-SEC Schools
Not only are there four uncommitted elite receiver prospects that may not come to the SEC, but also other prospects could follow their paths.
Tim Williams could spurn LSU and Alabama for Miami or Florida State. Derrick Green could choose Michigan, Marcell Harris could tell Florida "no" in favor of Texas and Mike Mitchell could choose Ohio State or Florida State over Texas A&M.
The SEC is doing well in recruiting, but there are many top-level recruits who could say "no thanks" to joining the best league in college football.
5. Robert Nekmdiche Could Stay Committed to Clemson
With Alabama, LSU, Ole Miss and Florida all still chasing the nation's No. 1 prospect, Robert Nkemdiche, fireworks could be setting off before national signing day is over.
Nkemdiche is committed to Clemson, which is a non-SEC school. The SEC is always in play for No. 1 prospect in the country, but this year (If Nkemdiche can warm up his mother to Clemson) that may not be the case.
With Alabama and Florida both vying for the No. 1 recruiting class, having Nkemdiche would vertainly put them square in place for top-class honors. Without him, the two SEC recruiting powers could fail to get that No. 1 spot every program covets each year.
4. Ohio State Could Surge Above Top SEC Schools in Rankings
The Buckeyes have a top class right now, per my recruiting class rankings. Many others also have Ohio State inside their top five too.
The Buckeyes are not done on the trail and could gobble up highly-touted recruits like DB Vonn Bell, WR Robert Foster, OT Dorian Johnson and WR James Quick before this cycle is over.
Getting commitments from those four to go along with their already fantastic class, the Buckeyes could leap frog Alabama and Florida in the recruiting class rankings.
3. Florida State Could Deliver Knockout Punch to SEC
The Seminoles are having a good recruiting year, but not as well as the last two cycles. All that could change as we move into the home stretch of recruiting over the next several months.
Florida State could take OT Laremy Tunsil, CB Mackensie Alexander, OLB Matthew Thomas and RB Greg Bryant away from SEC schools. Not only would this weaken the conference's chances of having a school land the No. 1 recruiting class, but this would definitely put Florida State in the discussion.
Watch out for the folks in Tallahassee.
2. Early Commitment Trend Could Have Negative SEC Impact on Recruiting Rankings
With the trend of committing early being so prevalent in this recruiting cycle, many of the recruiting rankings are about 70 percent set. Only a handful of uncommitted recruits really have the clout to impact a team's ranking.
With USC and Michigan being the top two recruiting classes over the SEC's top two of Florida and Alabama, how much change can we expect? Many top recruits have made their choices, many are solid and therefore the rankings likely won't have much change.
The SEC could already be locked out of the No. 1 recruiting class.
The Trojans have the No. 1 recruiting class on my board, and while they only hold 18 pledges, the quality of the class overall is phenomenal. USC also is the top class on ESPNU's board too.
The Trojans are not afraid to go in the SEC's territory to recruit there and will go head to head with any school in the powerful conference for a prospect they want. If the rankings hold firm to where they are now, the SEC will not have the No. 1 recruiting class in the country all thanks to magnificent recruiting by USC, yet again.
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.