In many instances, the first recruiting class for a new head coach is full of playing catch-up and it often results in a less-than-stellar recruiting class. That is because most coaches get hired after the season ends in late November and have only two full months to build a staff and recruit.
It is usually the second class and first full recruiting cycle that a foundation for what a coach wants to do is laid.
Someone forgot to tell Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn that.
After falling as low as No. 28 after being hired, Malzahn and the rest of the Auburn coaching staff hauled in the No. 11 recruiting class in the country on national signing day, according to the 247sports composite rankings. The next closest school in the recruiting rankings that also went through a coaching transition was Arkansas, who was No. 22.
The Tigers may not be done with the 2013 recruiting class, either. Highly touted and 6'7" wide receiver Derrick Griffin may sign with the Tigers this week, after officially visiting the Tigers last weekend. He will likely be a sign-and-place-into-junior-college due to his grade situation.
If he signs, he could rejoin Auburn in 2015.
Not only did Malzahn sign top prospects in the 2013 class, but he laid a foundation that he can build around for the next four to five years.
Here are five freshmen that Malzahn can build around as he attempts to bring the Tigers' football team back to the top of the college football mountaintop.