The final weekend before college football's early signing period has arrived, and coaches around the country are making their final pitches in hopes of securing top recruits.
Wednesday marks the start of a three-day period when prospects can sign a national letter of intent. That document is a binding agreement for the player to the school, which may then publicly recognize the prospect as part of the team.
Prior to the early signing period, school personnel can only indirectly mention a prospect. Hashtags, catch-phrases and trends will give way to official recognition in press conferences.
But it's a hectic time, for sure.
While the traditional February signing day remains, every program is hoping to complete most of the class in December. Some players will wait until February, but most will finalize their recruiting process with a signature between Wednesday and Friday.
Announcement Schedule and Predictions
4-star OLB Trenton Simpson: Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 10 a.m. ET
Considering: Auburn, North Carolina
Prediction: North Carolina
4-star OT Marcus Dumervil: Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 10 a.m. ET
Considering: Florida, Louisville, LSU
5-star ILB Justin Flowe: Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 1 p.m. ET
Considering: Clemson, Miami, Oregon, USC
4-star DE Tyler Baron: Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 1 p.m. ET
Considering: Kentucky, Tennessee
4-star ILB Desmond Tisdol: Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 1 p.m. ET
Considering: Auburn, Tennessee
5-star DE Jordan Burch: Thursday, Dec. 19 at 12:45 p.m. ET
Considering: Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, LSU, South Carolina
4-star DE Morven Joseph: Thursday, Dec. 19 at 1 p.m. ET
Considering: Florida, Tennessee
Rankings and times via 247Sports.
What to Know for the Early Signing Period
Alabama and Clemson once again boast the top recruiting classes, according to the 247Sports composite rankings.
While the Tide hold the No. 1 spot, Clemson has a terrific chance to leap Alabama if either Flowe or Burch join the class. They are considered the No. 4 and 5 prospects, respectively. But if Flowe goes elsewhere and Burch chooses LSU, it's possible Ed Orgeron's team climbs past both Bama and Clemson.
For now, LSU owns the third-best class with Ohio State and Texas A&M rounding out the top five.
Texas—despite its disappointing year on the field and recent coaching changes—has a tenuous grip on the No. 6 ranking ahead of Georgia, Florida, Auburn and Oklahoma. One or two commitments can shake up that order quickly, though.
Miami also had a poor 2019 season yet is clinging to a promising 2020 class. The Hurricanes are ranked 14th, sitting behind Penn State, Michigan and Notre Dame and in front of Washington.
The marquee player on Miami's board is Flowe, who took an official visit to Coral Gables in early November. He's since traveled to Clemson, Oregon and USC.
Oh, yeah. Let's chat about USC.
Although there is some optimism about how the Trojans will close this recruiting cycle, they're 81st in the rankings. Among the teams with a higher position than USC are East Carolina, Louisiana Tech, Bowling Green, Troy and Rutgers.
The school recently decided to retain Clay Helton, so his performance down the stretch will be monitored extremely closely.
While for a different reason, the same applies to new Florida State coach Mike Norvell. The former Memphis boss is trying to salvage a class that has lost six 4-star prospects—including 4-star quarterback Jeff Sims—and eight total since October.
Florida State still holds a No. 26 ranking thanks to seven 4-star commits, but the 2020 haul is hanging on by a thread.
Follow Bleacher Report writer David Kenyon on Twitter @Kenyon19_BR