Pac-12 Football Recruiting Classes: Breakdowns and Grades for Each Team

Luke KemperContributor IIIOctober 27, 2011

Pac-12 Football Recruiting Classes: Breakdowns and Grades for Each Team

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    While there is still a little less than a hundred days until signing day, recruiting classes have really begun to take shape for many of the teams in the Pac-12.

    There has been a lot of excitement of late with de-commits, commitments to rival teams, and commits taking visits to other schools.

    What does this all mean? Where does this leave your team?

12. Utah Offense

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    QB: B- 

    Travis Wilson is the QB chose Utah over the few other offers he had from other Pac-12 schools. He is a dual-threat QB who put up decent numbers throughout his high school career.

    Backfield: N/A 

    It would be unfair to give a straight F to them just because they don’t currently have any commits at the position, but they should get on it soon.

    Receivers: C- 

    With commits Delshawn McClellon (WR) and Jake Jackson (TE), it does not give a lot of room for optimism now that Utah is playing in a power conference. Jackson is a real nobody and there is no real information about him. However, it does allow him to be a serious sleeper candidate. 

    OL: C 

    The three offensive linemen committed to Utah are all pretty average players. The grade would be higher, but the three commits are all tackles and they have no interior lineman committed. 

Utah D/ST

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    DL: B-

    The top commit to the class is on the line in JC defensive end Sione Tupouata, but it has the same flaw as the offensive line, there is no interior among the three commits. 

    LB: C- 

    With only one commit, Chase Hansen, Utah really needs help in this department.

    DB: C 

    With one safety and one cornerback, the secondary needs more depth as well.

    Special Teams: N/A

Utah Overview

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    Analysis: Utah really needs to step up the caliber of players they take in now that they are in a power conference if they hope to make a real run at winning the Pac-12 anytime soon. 

     

    Recruits Needed to Make Class:

    Davonte’ Neal ATH

    Jeremiah Poutasi OT

    Brandon Beaver CB

11. Oregon State Offense

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    QB: C+

    With Brent Vanderveen being the QB for the class, plan on seeing him redshirt his freshman year and learning the system.

    Backfield: N/A 

    Receivers: B

    Taking multiple tight ends from the state of Washington and underrated WR Malik Gilmore make this class pretty good, but not great.

    OL: B+

    The reason the grade is so high is because of the best player in the class and one of the best guards in the country, Isaac Seumalo, whose dad is the O-Line coach at OSU. They are loading up at guard but only have one tackle currently committed.

Oregon State D/ST

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    DL: N/A 

    LB: C 

    With only MLB Joel Skotte committed, there leaves a lot to be desired. 

    DB: C+ 

    Cleveland Wallace is the only commitment. The Beavers just need more depth in general in their secondary. 

    Special Teams: N/A

Oregon State Overview

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    Analysis: The Beavers recruiting class is going about as great as their season—yeah, that bad. The only star power they have is Seumalo and that is because his dad is a coach there.

    They are going to have to land some huge names if they want a chance to have a good class. Winning some games would definitely help their cause, as well.

     

    Recruits needed to make class:

    Davonte’ Neal ATH

    Derrick Woods WR

10. Washington State Offense

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    QB: B+

    Right now, I might be the only one really in love with Austin Apodaca, but when he hits the field in Pullman, everyone will jump on board.

    Standing at 6’3” 190lbs, with a cannon for an arm, and the ability move well outside the pocket, Apodaca has all the makings of a great QB. His only other offer was from North Dakota, but everyone will be wishing they had offered him a scholarship once his college career comes to an end. 

    Backfield: C 

    With only one commit at RB, the Cougars could really use some added depth, especially at FB. 

    Receivers: C+ 

    With three receivers, who are all average, committed, the only thing that they really need is to bring in a tight end as well. 

    OL: B- 

    For a line lacking depth, they really came through in this class, with five tackles and a guard committed. They might not have the star power, but this group is pretty good, with diamonds in the rough Sam Flor and Denzell Dotson.

Washington State D/ST

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    DL: C 

    Dipping all the way down into Mississippi for their only defensive lineman, they are going to need more than defensive tackle Maurice Bennett to make this a good class. 

    LB: C+ 

    Jordan Pulu is the only commit at the position, so there is not a lot to brag about.

    Secondary: C

    The Cougars have only been able to get mid-level help in the secondary, two safeties and one cornerback. More added depth is what their secondary desperately needs. 

    Special Teams: N/A

Washington State Overview

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    Analysis: It seems that quantity over quality is the real theme with this class. While that may be true, I think that there are going to be some real good guys in this class that other teams really have overlooked.

     

    Recruits needed to make class:

    DeForest Buckner DE

    Reshawn Hooker OLB

9. Cal Offense

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    QB: A- 

    Zach Kline is an incredibly talented QB who was very active on the camp circuit this summer and seemed to get better every time. Even when the dust settles on signing day, he will still be one of their best commits. 

    Backfield: N/A 

    Receivers: A 

    Cal managed to steal Junior Espitia from Oregon State. While 5-star wide receiver Bryce Treggs is listed as a soft verbal, he will stay true to the school his father went to. Also, recent four-star US Army All-American commit Cedric Dozier will be playing on the offensive side of the ball. 

    OL: N/A

Cal D/ST

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    DL: N/A

    LB: B+

    Headlined by outside linebacker Michael Barton, the defensive core looks strong for Cal. They need to bring in some help to add depth, but they have a real playmaker in Barton. 

    DB: C

    Zach Hoffpauir is the only commit at safety, so there is not a whole lot going on. He’s a sleeper, but once signing day rolls around, Cal will have studs in their secondary.

    Special Teams: N/A

Cal Overview

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    Analysis: The reason Cal is so low is because they just don’t have that many recruits. Right now, they have quality over quantity. Once they start filling in their class, though, they will probably have a Top 25 class. Even with a less-than-stellar season so far, a top recruiter like Tosh Lupoi will always land you top talent. 

     

    Recruits Needed to Make Class:

    Shaq Thompson S

    Zach Banner OT

    Aziz Shittu DT

    Ishmael Adams CB

8. Oregon Offense

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    QB: A- 

    Taking two QBs is always risky, but the Ducks have their hearts set on it with Jake Rodrigues and Jeff Lockie. While both are good, Rodrigues is the clear top choice and the future QB for Oregon. 

    Backfield: N/A 

    Receivers: C+

    While they may not have any wide receivers yet, they do have two tight ends. The better of the two is Evan Baylis, who has great size and hands. 

    OL: N/A

Oregon D/ST

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    DL: A- 

    Oregon has some studs at DE committed, including US Army All-American Alex Balducci, but they have no inside help. 

    LB: N/A 

    DB: B- 

    Although they have no corners, the Ducks have some excellent safeties, including the Amoako twins from Arlington, Texas. 

    Special Teams: N/A

Oregon Overview

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    Analysis: Don’t panic Duck fans. This is how most recruiting classes go for Oregon. They start off a little slow, but then once signing day rolls around, you will be popping the champagne bottles with all the high-caliber players you will end up signing. 

     

    Recruits needed to make class:

    Byron Marshall RB

    Kwon Alexander OLB

    Ellis McCarthy DT

    Shaq Thompson S

    Ishmael Adams CB

    Kyle Murphy OT

7. UCLA Offense

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    QB: N/A 

    Backfield: B-

    Steven Lakalaka is not a stud running back, but Psalm Wooching is listed as one of the best fullbacks in this class. 

    Receivers: C 

    Ian Taubler at tight end is the only commit and he will fit very nicely into the system. 

    OL: B 

    With only guards committed, some tackles will be needed for some depth. Hiva Lutui is the crown jewel of this current class, though.

UCLA D/ST

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    DL: C

    A lack of inside help is not good for a team that is hurting on the defensive front. 

    LB: B 

    Aaron Porter is a stud, but can’t make an "A" for an entire positional ranking by himself. 

    DB: B

    No big names and no safeties to replace Rahim Moore, who was drafted last year. 

    Special Teams: N/A

UCLA Overview

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    Analysis: Slick Rick is on the hot seat and I would guess that many recruits would be hesitant to commit to a school that could very well lose its head coach. Once there is a steady coach at the helm, UCLA will start pulling in great classes again. 

     

    Recruits needed to make class:

    Devin Fuller QB

    Davonte’ Neal ATH

    Aziz Shittu DT

    Brian Nance LB

6. Colorado Offense

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    QB: B 

    Shane Dillon is a big quarterback at 6’5” 185 lbs. He has a cannon for an arm, yet is very mobile outside the pocket. 

    Backfield: C+ 

    With two commits at running back, Davien Payne is the headliner. Payne had a very impressive offer list, mainly due to his quickness and great ability to bounce off of tackles. 

    Receivers: C 

    The three receivers and tight end committed to Colorado all have one thing in common: They are all mediocre. Colorado is in a power conference now. They are going to need to do better. 

    OL: D 

    With only two commits, some depth is seriously needed.

Colorado D/ST

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    DL: C+ 

    They added some great depth at the tackle position with this class, but they still need more help at defensive end. 

    LB: N/A 

    DB: D 

    They only have a couple of commits, so they desperately need some depth. 

    Special Teams: N/A

Colorado Overview

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    Analysis: The same problem with Utah, they just cannot seem to recruit the type of players needed to play in a power conference. They really need to start winning games to attract some big name recruits. 

    Recruits Needed to Make Class:

    Yuri Wright CB

    Seth Jacobs OLB

    DeForest Buckner DE

5. Arizona Offense

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    QB: C 

    Nathan Sudfeld is the lone commit at quarterback for the Wildcats. If you have not heard of him, don't worry, because neither have I. His prospect profile shows he only had an offer from Arizona. No stats were available on the profile, either. Sudfeld's a real question mark. 

    Backfield: D 

    Anthony Lopez by himself is not nearly enough to make this a decent unit in the class. 

    Receivers: C+ 

    The real gem they have is tight end Taylor McNamara. With offers from some real elite programs, he was sold on the fact that he could be the next Rob Gronkowski. With Mike Stoops fired, though, he may be taking some other visits. 

    OL: B- 

    Solid depth gained at every position on the line is good work, but it doesn't help bring star power.

Arizona D/ST

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    DL: B 

    Some great depth and some decent players, including defensive end Dwight Melvin. 

    LB: C 

    A.J. Hilliard is the only commit, so some more depth is going to be needed. 

    DB: D 

    No corners is a bad sign. They have one safety commit in Devian Shelton, but that is it. 

    Special Teams: N/A

Arizona Overview

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    Analysis: Depth was added pretty well at some positions, but it is still very much lacking in others. Firing a head coach in the middle of the season is very bad for recruiting, too. 

     

    Recruits needed to make class:

    Jordan Diamond OT

    Davonte’ Neal ATH

    Travell Dixon CB

4. Washington Offense

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    QB: A 

    Washington was able to keep local product Jeff Lindquist home. The Huskies also have Army All-American Cyler Miles committed. Miles is rumored to be looking around, but as of right now, he is still a Husky. 

    RB: C 

    Tairen Owens is not the type of back that fits well into Washington’s system and is rumored to go elsewhere because of that reason. 

    Receivers: B- 

    With three average skill level receivers committed, Washington is on par with nearly the rest of the Pac-12 in that regard. Whether or not they bring in a tight end is a question, since they have a stud in true freshman Austin Seferian-Jenkins. 

    OL: C-

    Nathan Dean is the only commit at the position. In a class that is full of great offensive linemen, this is a little disappointing.

Washington D/ST

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    DL: C+ 

    There are a couple of commits in here, the best being Kalei Auelua, who already has 12 sacks in his senior year. 

    LB: C 

    The only commit is currently Blake Rodgers, who seems to be the next Cort Dennison by the sound of it. Some more depth is still needed though. 

    DB: C+ 

    There are a couple of commits at both safety and corner, but there is just no star power to be found. 

    Special Teams: A- 

    Local senior Korey Durkee can both punt and kick very well. Most of his kickoffs are touchbacks. He has hit a 53-yard field goal this year and averages nearly 45 yards a punt.

Washington Overview

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    Summary: The Huskies have surprised many this season. They were briefly in the Top 25 before getting clobbered by Stanford, but they seem to still be doing well. They have had multiple de-commitments, which has certainly hurt them. The most notable of which was Jeremy Castro, switching to the rival Oregon Ducks. 

     

    Recruits needed to make class:

    Zach Banner OT

    KeiVarae Russell RB

    Joshua Garnett OG

    Brandon Beaver CB

    Shaq Thompson DB

3. Arizona State Offense

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    QB: B 

    T.J. Millweard is very good and vastly underrated by many. After decomitting to Virginia Tech, he became the stable QB that the Sun Devils will need in years to come. 

    Backfield: C 

    Only one marginal running back has committed. A fullback is what the Sun Devils really need.

    Receivers: B+ 

    Good number and good skill level for all committed receivers. No five-star talent like Treggs with Cal, but still some excellent diamonds in the rough. 

    OL: B- 

    With a class loaded with studs, you would think that they could do better, but they do have a big name talent in Evan Goodman all the way from Lakeland, Fla.

Arizona State D/ST

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    DL: C+ 

    Good depth was added but no notable star power, though. 

    LB: A- 

    Great depth was also added here, along with some diamonds in the rough. They did a great job of securing C.J. Dozier since stud middle linebacker Vontaze Burfict is most likely headed to the NFL next year to fulfill his destiny of becoming the next Ray Lewis. 

    DB: B- 

    There are good commits at the corner position, but ASU has no one at the safety position. 

    Special Teams: B 

    It's not that common for a long snapper to get a scholarship offer, but if you are as good as Easton Wahlstrom, you probably should.

Arizona State Overview

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    Analysis: The Sun Devils are playing well this year and it shows in their recruiting. They have some big-name talent still on the board and if they end their season on a high note, then everything will all fall into place. 

     

    Recruits needed to make class:

    Andrus Peat OT

    Davonte’ Neal ATH

    Reggie Daniels S

    Jordan Payton WR

    Demetrious Cox S

2. Stanford Offense

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    QB: N/A 

    Backfield: N/A

    Receivers: B 

    With five receivers committed, should Andrew Luck stay for some odd reason, he will have plenty of options. 

    OL: C- 

    Only two commits in a class that is full of stud offensive linemen. They are probably the favorites now to land top prospect Joshua Garnett since he has been accepted there.

Stanford D/ST

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    DL: B 

    Just imagine if stud defensive tackle Aziz Shittu was still committed. Now they have no tackles committed, but they do have some stud ends. 

    LB: A- 

    Highlighted by outside linebacker Noor Davis, this future linebacking core is going to be a force. 

    DB: B- 

    While they have no true corners yet, they have some good safeties, including Alex Carter. 

    Special Teams: N/A

Stanford Overview

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    Analysis: Stanford is having an excellent season behind the arm of the leading Heisman candidate Andrew Luck. If they keep this up, David Shaw will have two great classes in a row. 

     

    Recruits Needed to Make Class:

    Josh Garnett OG

    Aziz Shittu DT

    Barry Sanders Jr. RB

1. USC Offense

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    QB: N/A 

    Backfield: B 

    This baffles me: The fullback commit is better than the running back. I am very curious as to why they are bringing in a JC back instead of pursuing a top talent like usual.

    Receivers: A- 

    Even with the de-commitment of Jordan Payton, USC still thrives at the receiver position. What really secures their grade, however, is stud tight end Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick. 

    OL: B+ 

    USC is getting quality over quantity, the exact opposite of almost everyone else in the Pac-12. With recent guard commit Jordan Simmons, they solidified holes that needed filling.

USC D/ST

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    DL: C

    The de-commitment of Arik Armstead really hurts the Trojans. He would have been the anchor for their defensive line for many years to come. Now their only commit is defensive end Pio Vatuvei. 

    LB: A

    Middle linebacker Scott Starr and outside linebacker Jabari Ruffin are probably the best one-two punch commits at linebacker for any recruiting class at the moment. Easily the two best linebacker prospects on the West Coast this year.

    DB: N/A

    Special Teams: N/A

USC Overivew

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    Even with NCAA-enforced recruiting caps this season, USC still manages to bring in the top commits in the Pac-12. They are playing well this season and have one of the best recruiters in Ed Orgeron on their side. 

     

    Recruits Needed to Make Class:

    Arik Armstead DE

    Ellis McCarthy DT

    Zach Banner OT

    Kyle Murphy OT

    Jordan Payton WR