Alabama Football: Who Is Tide's Biggest Competition for No. 1 Recruiting Class?
Depending on which recruiting service you use, there is a great chance that the Alabama Crimson Tide are considered to have the best 2013 recruiting class at the moment.
With the combination of winning, tradition and a dream coaching staff, Alabama is simply looking at a menu and picking and choosing the players it likes the most. Many of the top players have bought into the system and will be in Tuscaloosa next year.
However, we should all know by now that anything can happen in the recruiting world. Players change their minds more than underwear, and sometimes, schools find a way to convince a kid to go in the opposite direction he was originally leaning. It is a dog-eat-dog world in the recruiting business, and there isn't one school in the country that is comfortable with seeing Alabama at the top.
With many commitments soon approaching and national signing day rolling around, here are a few schools that can challenge the Crimson Tide for that No. 1 spot.
5. Ohio State
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Current Scout.com Ranking: No. 6
Current Rivals.com Raking: No. 8
Current ESPN Ranking: No. 4
247Sports Ranking: No. 4
Key Players Already Landed: WR Jalin Marshall, OT Evan Lisle, DE Joey Bosa, RB Ezekiel Elliott and TE Marcus Baugh
Why School Could Finish at the Top: Have you heard about some guy named Urban Meyer? He is some successful head coach who has a couple of national championships under his belt and doesn't miss out on many recruits who catch his eye.
With many top recruits already committed to the Buckeyes, Meyer could soon have plenty more by the time the weekend is over with. Guys such as 4-star linebacker Trey Johnson (via a tweet by Tim May of the Columbus Dispatch), linebacker Mike Mitchell (via 247Sports) and wide receiver James Quick (via 247Sports), all have Ohio State high on their list.
Meyer does not miss out on many elite prospects, and he is sure to land a few more before the 2013 class comes to an end.
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Current Scout.com Ranking: No. 7
Current Rivals.com Raking: No. 5
Current ESPN Ranking: No. 3
247Sports Ranking: No. 3
Key Players Already Landed: CB Vernon Hargreaves III, WR Ahmad Fulwood, LB Daniel McMillan, S Marcell Harris and RB Kelvin Taylor
Why School Could Finish at the Top: After losing the BCS Sugar Bowl to a basketball school, head coach Will Muschamp will now take out his frustrations on the recruiting trail. With only two years at Florida, Muschamp has quickly put together two straight Top 10 classes, according to most top recruiting websites.
What makes an already loaded recruiting class even scarier is that 5-star defensive tackle Montravius Adams is expected to check out the Florida campus soon. Linebacker Trey Johnson has Florida high on his list (via Mike Carvell of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution) and 5-star running back Alex Collins is also considering the Gators, according to 247Sports.
Florida may be laughed at for much of the offseason for losing to Louisville, but the recruiting has been no joke.
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Current Scout.com Ranking: No. 5
Current Rivals.com Raking: No. 5
Current ESPN Ranking: No. 8
247Sports Ranking: No. 8
Key Players Already Landed: DT Greg Gilmore, OT Ethan Pocic, LB Melvin Jones, OG Josh Boutte and TE DeSean Smith
Why School Could Finish at the Top: LSU has quite a few top players who are participating in the high school all-star games this weekend. A lot of them are already making a name for themselves during the practices, according to ESPN's Corey Long in an interview with The Times-Picayune recruiting analyst James Smith (via Noles Yellin of The Times-Picayune).
But Les Miles is a coach who is never satisfied with what he already has, and there are still a lot of big fish out there for him to catch. The guy whom everybody wants on their team is No. 1 overall recruit Robert Nkemdiche, and he has said that the Tigers are the front-runner for his services, according to Noles Yellin of The Times-Picayune. Defensive end Kendell Beckwith could also soon play for LSU. (via Noles Yellin of The Times-Picayune)
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Current Scout.com Ranking: No. 1
Current Rivals.com Raking: No. 3
Current ESPN Ranking: No. 6
247Sports Ranking: No. 5
Key Players Already Landed: QB Shane Morris, S Dymonte Thomas, OG Patrick Kugler, OT Kyle Bosch and OG Chris Fox
Why School Could Finish at the Top: According to Scout.com, Michigan already has the top overall class with many 5-star recruits, including Morris, who is supposed to become the next great quarterback to take the Wolverines to the promise land.
But how about adding the top running back in the country in Derrick Green? He says that the school in Ann Arbor is his favorite (via Rivals.com), and he would provide Michigan with that true threat at the position.
A 5-star safety in Leon McQuay III is also considering the Wolverines in addition to schools such as Florida State and USC (via 247Sports). The team also seems to be in the running for athlete Tyler Boyd (via Jerry Dipaola of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review), who should decide where he is going soon.
Scout.com is already a believer in this class, and if a couple of those players decide to pick Michigan, others will be as well.
1. Notre Dame
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Current Scout.com Ranking: No. 2
Current Rivals.com Raking: No. 2
Current ESPN Ranking: No. 2
247Sports Ranking: No. 2
Key Players Already Landed: LB Jaylon Smith, LB Alex Anzalone, OT Steven Elmer, OG John Montelus and OT Colin McGovern
Why School Could Finish at the Top: Notre Dame is really the most consistent program at the top when it comes to the top-four recruiting websites. If the Irish weren't able to land a single player on top of what they already have, I'm sure head coach Brian Kelly would be satisfied.
However, we all know that is not going to be the case.
Eddie Vanderdoes, who is a 5-star defensive tackle who decommitted from USC, now has a visit scheduled with that team out in South Bend (via Rivals.com). Safety Max Redfield is another former USC commitment who likes Notre Dame quite a bit (via Rivals.com). Top defensive end Alquadin Muhammad also has the school on his radar (via 247Sports).
It is clear that Notre Dame is the team to watch out for when discussing the best overall recruiting class. And if the Irish can beat Alabama in the national championship, there are many other recruits who may also decide to change their commitment.