The Pac-12 is a conference that does not get the respect it deserves. With programs such as USC, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA and Washington, it is a league that has good depth.
While the SEC annually dominates the recruiting rankings, several elite 2014 recruits could choose to play in the Pac-12. The top recruit committed to a Pac-12 school right now is 5-star quarterback Keller Chryst, but Stanford's headliner may not own that title for long.
A receiver from Louisiana could spurn LSU to head west, while an athlete from a Los Angeles-area powerhouse could choose to stay home. Also, a prospect from Texas may be attracted to the California sunshine.
A New Orleans native, Speedy Noil has exceptional skills with the football. He plays quarterback for his high school squad, but he projects as a receiver in college.
At 5'10.5" and 176 pounds, Noil has amazing speed and quickness. He is explosive on the field, evidenced by his ability to blow by defenders in a flash. Noil is creative with the ball, as he allows his instincts to take over when attempting to make plays.
Although schools such as LSU, Florida and Texas A&M are in the mix, USC is a school the 5-star recruit is interested in, according to 247Sports.
At 6'4" and 370 pounds, Damien Mama is an elite offensive lineman with 5-star size. He has terrific bulk, plus Mama knows how to use his strength to dominate defensive linemen at the point of attack. He rolls out of his stance with solid leverage before driving his legs to move his target out of an alley.
Mama can play tackle due to his quick feet, but he likely will be a guard at the next level. Alabama, Notre Dame, BYU and Wisconsin are schools he is considering, per 247Sports.
However, many experts predict him to sign with USC.
From northern California, Joe Mixon is a 5-star running back who can make an impact in several different ways. At 6'2" and 195 pounds, Mixon has the power to push piles inside as a runner.
He shows natural ball skills and speed to make plays as a receiver, plus Mixon has the potential to be a great kickoff returner. He possesses solid instincts and vision, as well as adequate elusiveness in space.
Although Oklahoma appears to be the favorite, via 247Sports, do not count out California.
From Texas, Solomon Thomas is a talented 5-star defensive lineman with versatility. He can play defensive end or tackle in a 4-3 scheme, plus he has the skills to work as a defensive end in a 3-4 defense.
Thomas, who is 6'3" and 256 pounds, can quickly grab an offensive lineman with strength. He has the power to stack at the point of attack before shedding to make a tackle. The Texan also can convert speed to power when rushing the passer.
If Thomas signs with a Pac-12 program, 247Sports says it will be Stanford.
Among the best offensive players in the country, Malachi Dupre is a 5-star receiver from New Orleans. He is a smooth athlete who uses subtle quickness to get open.
Dupre, who is 6'2.5" and 187 pounds, has solid speed to make plays on the second and third level. He also runs with deceptive strength after the catch, which can be intimidating for defensive backs attempting to tackle him. He has the potential to be a No. 1 receiver in college.
LSU is fiercely recruiting the talented receiver, but Dupre could opt to sign with UCLA, reports 247Sports.
At 6'1" and 200 pounds, John Smith is not your typical "athlete" recruit. He has the strength of a linebacker, plus he plays with surprising power.
Yet Smith also has outstanding speed and quickness. He moves freely and easily on the field due to being incredibly agile. Smith can play receiver or safety for a team, as he has great instincts and vision. The 5-star prospect will be a dynamic college player once he settles into one position.
Oregon, USC and UCLA are schools to watch for him, per 247Sports.
Adoree' Jackson is such a tremendous athlete that he could be a 5-star recruit at several different positions. Jackson has the strength to play running back, plus he displays great run-after-catch skills as a receiver.
However, cornerback is his best position due to his instincts and short-area quickness. Although the 5'9.5", 182-pounder must refine his technique, he can be left on an island to cover a team's No. 1 receiver. Jackson has loose hips to mirror in off-man coverage, plus he has the speed to carry receivers downfield.
Oregon, USC and UCLA have a shot, according to Greg Biggins of Scout.com (subscription required).
Use the 2014 Bleacher Report College Football Recruiting Heat Map to track the top recruits in the nation who could be headed for the Pac-12!
Edwin Weathersby is the College Football Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. He has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants and Cleveland Browns.