Power Ranking Hottest Recruiting Schools of the 2012 College Football Season

Andrew Kulha@@AKonSportsSenior Analyst IIIDecember 11, 2012

Power Ranking Hottest Recruiting Schools of the 2012 College Football Season

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    The world of college football recruiting is defined by highs and lows, ups and downs and ebbs and flows.

    When things go wrong, they tend to go wrong in bunches—decommitments, a rival flips a recruit from you, or you're just getting cold on the recruiting trail.

    When things go well, however, the good times seem to come in bunches. Whether it be landing one or two big-time recruits or just having a ton of positive attention surrounding your program.

    Here are five college football programs that are experiencing a ton of success in the realm of recruiting this season.

Honorable Mentions

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    USC—Lane Kiffin's 2013 class has been ranked No. 1 by Rivals.com for a while now and it features five five-star recruits. By the numbers they are the best class in the nation, but they lost a ton of momentum because of the disappointing 2012 season. I can consider them a great class, but I can't consider them a hot recruiting team right now.

    Georgia—Georgia is having a very good recruiting year, but it's not yet complete. They have a ton of very good recruits, but not many big-time names. That said, their success on the field this year has translated into a lot of hype, and there are quite a few elite recruits that have the Bulldogs near the top of their interest list. They have a chance to really jump up the rankings soon.

    Michigan—Michigan started off really hot but has cooled off of late with two major decommitments. Brady Hoke's class is still ranked No. 5 overall by Rivals.com, but there's no doubting that Michigan recruiting has lost a ton of momentum.

5. Alabama

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    It should be no surprise that Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide are on this list.

    Saban's 2013 class is currently ranked No. 4 overall by Rivals.com and they've had a very productive recruiting cycle so far.

    It features 5-star athlete/running back Derrick Henry who projects to be an elite back at the college level, and 5-star tight end O.J. Howard who can be just as good at his position.

    Alabama is still in the running for a few more elite recruits, so they aren't quiet done yet.

    Things are looking very good for the Crimson Tide in regards to recruiting.

4. Ohio State

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    We all knew Urban Meyer was a good recruiter coming into Ohio State, but what he's done for the Buckeyes this season has been nothing short of spectacular.

    His class is currently ranked No. 8 overall by Rivals.com and the Buckeyes have been on somewhat of a hot streak lately.

    It's received two big-time defensive commitments in the past two weeks in 4-star defensive tackle Donovan Munger and 4-star cornerback Gareon Conley. To make things even sweeter for the Buckeyes, Conley is a former Michigan commitment, and stealing a prized recruit from your arch-rival is always a plus.

    Consider all of that and the 12-0 regular season, and it's no surprise that there's a ton of hype surrounding Ohio State recruiting.

    Meyer has really restored Ohio State and they are well on their way to being a powerhouse once again.

3. Florida

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    The Florida Gators and Will Muschamp received three commitments this past weekend in 4-star linebacker Matt Rolin, 4-star offensive lineman Trenton Brown and 3-star offensive tackle Roderick Johnson.

    That statement sounds even better when you consider that they were able to flip Rolin—the No. 12 outside linebacker in the country according to the 247Sports composite rankings—away from Steve Spurrier and South Carolina.

    Florida did lose a commitment from 4-star outside linebacker Quinton Powell to somewhat even out their momentum, but overall, the Gators have been on a roll.

    In fact, Muschamp's class is currently ranked No. 1 overall by ESPN Recruiting Nation, recently passing USC for the honor.

    Overall, it's hard not to consider the Gators to be one of the hottest recruiting programs in the nation right now. They have one of the best, if not the best, defensive classes in the country, and Muschamp and his staff have done an incredible job.

2. Notre Dame

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    As if playing in the BCS National Championship wasn't good enough for Notre Dame, they're also having an extremely good year in recruiting.

    Brian Kelly's class is ranked No. 2 overall by Rivals.com and it features two 5-star recruits in outside linebacker Jaylon Smith and newly committed running back Greg Bryant.

    Notre Dame is always a big national draw in recruiting, but because of their success on the field this year, they've been one of the most hyped programs in the nation.

    The buzz surrounding not only their current team, but their current recruiting class is staggering. If they win the National Championship that buzz will only multiply, and with the way Kelly is recruiting, the Fighting Irish are going to be great for years to come.

    If it wasn't for the next team on this list, Notre Dame would be the hottest recruiting team in the country.

1. Texas A&M

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    Texas A&M has been the hottest school in college football this season, and it's translated very nicely into recruiting.

    Kevin Sumlin's 2013 class is only ranked No. 7 overall by Rivals.com, but it features 34 recruits, including 5-star athlete/wide receiver Ricky Seals-Jones who just recently committed.

    The switch to the SEC has really helped the Aggies draw in elite recruits, and freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel's Heisman trophy winning season will only further that effort.

    The Aggies run an exciting offense, they're in the SEC, and "Johnny Football" has become the biggest name in the sport. All of that has been huge in regards to recruiting.

    As it stands, there's no bigger recruiting draw than Texas A&M right now, and they're setting themselves up to be a force on the college football recruiting scene.


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