Georgia vs. Auburn: Whose 2014 Recruiting Class Is Better Right Now?
Georgia will travel to Auburn to play a critical SEC game this weekend. The Bulldogs and Tigers are both among the top programs in the country.
The injury bug has hit UGA hard this season, while Auburn must not be caught looking ahead to a looming pivotal game versus rival Alabama. The teams will battle on the field Saturday but have already bumped heads several times on the recruiting trail.
It's time to see which of these SEC powerhouses has the better recruiting class.
Georgia's 2014 Recruiting Capsule
Head coach Mark Richt is a thorough recruiter who loves to acquire as much talent as possible. He does a good job of not only recruiting the player, but also recruiting key people around the recruit.
Georgia has 17 commitments, and eight are from the Peach State. With five commitments, the state of Florida has also served the Bulldogs well during this cycle. States such as North Carolina, South Carolina and Kansas are also represented.
The group has nine commitments on offense, seven on defense and one athlete. The defensive line leads the way with four commitments.
Auburn's 2014 Recruiting Capsule
The Tigers are one of the top surprises this year, both on the field and on the recruiting trail. Head coach Gus Malzahn has quickly established himself as a formidable recruiting opponent for opposing SEC coaches.
Auburn has a 16-man class that is packed full of talent. The state of Alabama leads the way with six commitments, but Georgia is not far behind with five. Florida and Mississippi are the other two states Malzahn has raided for prospects.
The Tigers' class features eight offensive players, plus seven on defense and one athlete. The group has five recruits who play receiver or tight end.
Georgia's Top 2014 Commitments
Nick Chubb is a talented 4-star running back who has above-average speed and quickness on a 5'11", 216-pound frame.
He will be joined in the offensive backfield by 4-star quarterback Jacob Park, who hails from South Carolina. Receiver Shakenneth Williams and tight end Jeb Blazevich are 4-star prospects who should become two of Park's favorite targets.
Park will be protected by 4-star blockers such as Isaiah Wynn and Dyshon Sims. The pair of offensive linemen will get great reps in practice by battling 4-star defensive linemen Lamont Gaillard, Dontavius Russell and Keyon Brown.
Auburn's Top 2014 Commitments
The Tigers boast a commitment from 5-star running back Racean Thomas, who will be a great fit for their spread offense. Thomas has good speed, plus he has natural receiving skills in the passing game.
Yet, keep an eye on 3-star running back Kamryn Pettway.
Tre' Williams seems destined to become a defensive captain at Auburn. The 4-star linebacker has good strength, plus he displays solid short-area explosiveness.
Georgia 2014 Headliner
Sony Michel is the best player in Georgia's recruiting class. The 5-star running back is a special talent who has an outside chance to get a carry or two next season in Athens.
Michel, who is from Florida, is 5'11" and 205 pounds. He exhibits good vision to locate back-side holes, plus he does a good job of reading the flow of linebackers. Michel has outstanding quickness to and through holes, which he uses before showing off his speed to make long runs.
The Sunshine State recruit also has terrific balance and strength to absorb hits and stay on his feet. Michel has a natural feel for the passing game, as he possesses great quickness to separate at junctions before utilizing his soft hands to catch balls.
Auburn's 2014 Headliner
Hailing from Mississippi Gulf Coast C.C., 4-star JUCO receiver D'haquille Williams is the headliner for Auburn. He is expected to make an immediate impact for the Tigers next season.
At 6'3" and 213 pounds, Williams has the frame of a strong safety. He has the lateral quickness to escape press coverage off the line, plus he displays good athleticism to avoid traffic at the bottom of his routes.
Williams has solid speed to climb on top of secondaries to make plays on the third level. He also has great ball skills, evidenced by his ability to attack the ball with his hands while in crowds.
It would be surprising if Williams did not become a key part of Auburn's offense in 2014.
Examining both classes shows each group has impressive talent. The commitment totals are about the same, plus both programs have a 5-star pledge.
However, Georgia has slightly better quality in its class. The Bulldogs have 12 4-star commitments, while Auburn only has six.
That kind of quality is why UGA is the winner of this battle.
2014 Bleacher Report College Football Recruiting Heat Map
Auburn and Georgia both have many recruits who are featured on the 2014 Bleacher Report College Football Recruiting Heat Map!