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Espn Recruitingnation's Sec Grades

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ESPN RecruitingNation's SEC Grades


Alabama Crimson Tide : A

Top prospect: ATH Derrick Henry. One of the more physically impressive prospects in this entire class, Henry will head to Alabama as a promising, big running back despite measurables that may project better on defense.

Breakdown: The Tide started out strong and closed well down the stretch to finish with another elite class that helps them reload at needed positions. Needs were filled on the defensive line with disruptive DE Jonathan Allen, who is No. 28 in the ESPN 150, and Tim Williams, who is No. 36, and at DT with versatile 6-foot-3, 275-pound Dee Liner, who is No. 26 in the ESPN 150 and the No. 4 DT, and No. 11 DT A'Shawn Robinson. The offense might have received the most firepower with No. 2 WR Robert Foster, who gives Alabama yet another playmaker and continues to show how well the staff has been able to recruit on a national level. The Tide won't be hurting for running backs. Henry, a five-star prospect, has load-back potential and Alvin Kamara, the nation's No. 4 RB and No. 32 overall prospect, is a versatile back who can not only run well but is a weapon in the passing game. Add in Tyren Jones and Altee Tenpenny, the Nos. 8 and 10 running backs in the country, respectively, and this is a loaded backfield. The offense also got a boost from tight end O.J. Howard, a freakish, athletic playmaker, and QBCooper Bateman, who has the pocket-passer skill set that fits well in this pro-style system.

Florida Gators : A

Top prospect: CB Vernon Hargreaves III. Ahead of the curve in terms of physical and mental talent, Hargreaves has elite cover corner skills and should step in right away and compete for early playing time in Gainesville.

Breakdown: With back-to-back top-five classes, coach Will Muschamp has Florida living up to the high standard Urban Meyer set on the recruiting trail. The Gators are led by the five-star Hargreaves, the top lockdown corner in the country. In addition to Hargreaves, DTsCaleb Brantley and Jay-nard Bostwick, OLBs Daniel McMillian and Matt Rolin, and safeties Keanu Neal and Marcell Harris help this class reload the defensive roster. ATH Alex Anzalone may end up at OLB or DE as well. Offensively, the Gators are in need of playmakers, and this class certainly has some explosive weapons. Five-star RB Kelvin Taylor is the state of Florida's all-time leading rusher and he's joined by four-star RB Adam Lane. Taylor, the nation's top RB, has rushed for more than 30 touchdowns in his senior season. On the perimeter the Gators signed several key WR commits, including a pair of big wide receivers in 6-foot-2 Ahmad Fulwood and 6-4 Demarcus Robinson, and the ultra-quick and versatile Alvin Bailey.

Georgia Bulldogs : A

Top prospect: CB Shaq Wiggins. What he lacks in size, Wiggins makes up for in great quickness and lockdown coverage skills.

Breakdown: After a top-five class last year, the Bulldogs are bringing in a top-10 class to Athens this year. Georgia filled position needs with this deep class, most notably in the back seven. The Bulldogs loaded up at linebacker and in the secondary, led by Wiggins and S Tray Matthews. We like their pickups at linebacker as well, with big run-stoppers Johnny O'Neal and Tim Kimbrough.There are also three notable ESPN 150 signees on offense -- quarterback Brice Ramsey, athlete Tramel Terry and center Brandon Kublanow. Juco receiver Jonathon Rumph has the physical measurables to contribute early as a pass-catcher.

LSU Tigers : A

Top prospect: ATH Kendell Beckwith. Listed as an athlete, Beckwith should become a versatile front-seven defender for the Tigers and develop into a disruptive linebacker or edge rusher.

Breakdown: The Tigers quietly signed a top-10 class filled with a few out-of-state ESPN 150 prospects and typical strong in-state talent. Beckwith, who is No. 41 in the ESPN 150 and the No. 2 player in Louisiana, was a huge get and has difference-maker size and speed qualities. LSU has met most of its needs in the class, from QB (Hayden Rettig and Anthony Jennings) to defensive line (ESPN 150 DTs Greg Gilmore and Maquedius Bain and ESPN 150 DETashawn Bower are among several talented linemen to sign) to the secondary (speedsters Jeryl Brazil and Tre'Davious White at CB). The Tigers also beefed up the offensive line and brought in a few key pass-catchers, including TE-H DeSean Smith.

Ole Mi$$ Rebels : A*

Top prospect: DE Robert Nkemdiche. A major coup for the Rebels, Nkemdiche should be a disruptive presence as a freshman and perhaps more significantly, be an every-down defensive end.

Breakdown: Ole Miss landed its dream class and arguably its best recruiting class ever, led by Nkemdiche, the nation's top prospect, and five-star OT Laremy Tunsil, who is No. 5 in the ESPN 150. They join the nation's No. 1 receiver in Laquon Treadwell, who is No. 19 in the ESPN 150, No. 2 safety Antonio Conner, who is No. 24 in the ESPN 150 and the state of Mississippi's top prospect, and No. 3 OT Austin Golson, who is No. 52 in the ESPN 150, in what is an unprecedented class for Ole Miss. The offensive backfield was a focus for coach Hugh Freeze in this class, with pocket-passing quarterback Ryan Buchanan, dual-threat quarterback DeVante Kincade and tailback Mark Dodson Jr. among a deep and talented group. Junior college defensive tackle Lavon Hooks should provide immediate help up front.

Texas A&M Aggies : A

Top prospect: WR Ricky Seals-Jones. An even more significant signing because they were unable to sign TE-H Derrick Griffin, Seals-Jones has elite measurables with the athleticism and imposing physicality to shine in this offense.

Breakdown: The Aggies are proving they can both win and recruit in the SEC. This class is deep and has double-digit ESPN 300 prospects headed to College Station, including plenty of offensive weapons. There are highly productive receivers, led by ESPN 150 wideouts Seals-Jones andSebastian LaRue and athlete LaQuvionte Gonzalez, who will likely be a receiver at Texas A&M. QBKohl Stewart is the wild card in this class, as the talented prospect also has a bright future in baseball. On defense, ESPN 300 inside linebacker Jordan Mastrogiovanni, a former Oklahoma commit, headlines a strong unit group. Defensive tackle is another area of need, and ESPN 150Justin Manning and ESPN 300 Isaiah Golden help fill it.

Auburn Tigers : A-

Top prospect: DE Carl Lawson. It was instrumental that the Tigers were able to retain the No. 2 overall prospect in the ESPN 150, and he should immediately help Auburn's pass rush.

Breakdown: So much for the concerns about the class falling apart after Gene Chizik and his staff were let go. New coach Gus Malzahn not only salvaged the class but has one of the nation's top defensive line units. It starts with Lawson, the five-star prospect who flirted with other programs but reaffirmed his commitment to Auburn late in the process and maybe helped lure other recruits to the Plains. The Tigers then added DT Montravious Adams, who is No. 13 in the ESPN 150 and the nation's No. 2 DT, and flipped DE Elijah Daniel, who is No. 34 in the ESPN 150, from Ole Miss. The Tigers picked up ESPN 300 wide receivers Tony Stevens and Dominic Walker -- high school teammates -- shortly after Malzahn was hired. Malzahn went the juco route with a few key prospects, including Nick Marshall, who is projected to play quarterback for the Tigers and fits their system.

South Carolina Gamecocks : B+

Top prospect: DT Kelsey Griffin. A top-10 DT, Griffin should continue the tradition of good defensive linemen at South Carolina under coach Steve Spurrier. What Griffin lacks in flash he makes up for in effort.

Breakdown: Spurrier has consistently brought in top-25 classes to South Carolina, and this year's class is no different. The Gamecocks once again have good speed, athleticism and quality up front on the way to Columbus, led by Griffin and ESPN 150 RB David Williams, both of whom are big out-of-state gets for the Gamecocks. A very good group of offensive tackles is on board, including D.J. Park, Alan Knott, J.P. Vonashek and late get Na'Ty Rodgers. The linebacker corps will get a major infusion of talent, led by ESPN 300 prospect Larenz Bryant. Getting ESPN 300 quarterback Connor Mitch on campus in January as an early enrollee should be a big boost for both his development and the future of the Gamecocks' offense.

Vanderbilt Commodores : B+

Top prospect: WR Jordan Cunningham. The Commodores land a smooth, fluid receiver with the ability to get on the field early and contribute.

Breakdown: Coach James Franklin has certainly created quite a recruiting buzz around his program since he took over in 2011, and this top-25 class might be one of the best in school history. Vandy's class is led by Cunningham, an ESPN 150 wideout who is deceptively good and has big upside. He joins ESPN 300 wide receivers DeAndre Woods andCarlos Burse in filling a need for the Commodores. The offense will also get a boost from highly regarded TE Brandon Vandenburg. Defensively, ESPN 300 defensive tackle Jay Woods, ESPN 300 OLB Zach Cunningham and four-star CB Tre' Bell lead the way.

Arkansas Razorbacks : B

Top prospect: RB Alex Collins. The Razorbacks struck late with Collins, adding a future ball carrier in the explosive ESPN 150 running back out of Florida.

Breakdown: New coach Bret Bielema is putting his imprint on the Hogs quickly. He added Collins, a onetime Miami commit, who can be a back who fits well into Bielema's system. There were some issues with Collins getting his letter of intent to Arkansas, but he tweeted that everything will work out OK. While it's unknown how this will play out, the Hogs are hoping for the best. ESPN 150 OT Denver Kirkland chose the Hogs over the Canes and will be an anchor on the O-line in time. ESPN 150 tight end Hunter Henry is another good fit. Elite 11 quarterback finalist Austin Allen is an under-the-radar pocket passer and Allen's four-star outside linebacker teammate Brooks Ellis is a nice add for the defense. The Razorbacks cleaned up on the juco route with six commits and three in the ESPN JC 100. None was more important than outside linebacker Martrell Spaight, who committed to Kansas State and flipped to the Hogs on the first day of the juco signing period.

Mississippi State Bulldogs : B

Top prospect: DE Chris Jones. While he's not quite in Nkemdiche's class at this stage, Jones has the ceiling to get in that category by the time it's all said and done.

Breakdown: The Bulldogs did a good job of filling needs and retaining one of the state's premier players in Jones. Jones, No. 46 in the ESPN 150, headlines the class and is a rising star with unparalleled upside in this class. Mississippi State signed another of the state's top difference-makers in athlete Ashton Shumpert, the Bulldogs' third ESPN 300 prospect. They scored big late when they flipped ESPN 300 WR Fred Ross from Oklahoma State. Ross is a top-25 wideout. Junior college WR Jeremey Chappelle is also a nice addition to the class, as we see the physical tools to contribute early. ESPN 300 dual-threat quarterback Cord Sandberg is a solid addition as well.

Tennessee Volunteers : B

Top prospect: WR Marquez North. When combining size and speed, there are few receivers with North's elite blend in this class. Expect him to be a top early target for the Vols.

Breakdown: Sitting outside the top 25 is new for the Vols, but North was a big-time get down the stretch for new coach Butch Jones, as was fellow four-star WR Ryan Jenkins. Tennessee loaded up at the receiver position, which was a need, and there is help behind center with a pair of ESPN 300 QBs in top-20 QB-PP Riley Ferguson and top-five QB-DT Josh Dobbs, who flipped from Arizona State to the Vols on signing day. On defense, linebacker Corey Vereen brings a valuable hybrid pass-rusher element. Four-star DE Jaylen Miller is a disruptive pass-rusher who could fill out and move inside down the line. Top-25 OT Austin Sanders is a good get for the Vols, who added solid depth up front.

Kentucky Wildcats : B-

Top prospect: DE Za'Darius Smith. Kentucky went the juco route for a few of its top prospects, including Smith, a DE with the size and well-rounded skill set on the edge to play an early role.


Kentucky signed a deep class with solid top-end talent. The Wildcats closed strong by flipping ESPN 300 DE Jason Hatcher from USC. The Wildcats are expecting immediate help on their defensive line from Smith and the same is true at receiver with four-star junior college wideout Javess Blue, an explosive playmaker who should be able to contribute early on special teams as a return man. Kentucky also inked a pair of four-star high school prospects, Jojo Kemp and Jaleel Hytchye, who should both develop into effective space players.

Missouri Tigers : B-

Top prospect: DT Josh Augusta. Defensive tackle was a need, and the Tigers landed a good one down the stretch as Augusta has good size, great upside and the quickness to develop in the trenches.

Breakdown: While Missouri may need to recruit better outside the state to compete in the SEC, the Tigers loaded up on in-state prospects -- including ESPN 300 athlete Chase Abbington, who could see time at several positions on both sides of the ball because of his 6-4, 210-pound frame, and linebacker Eric Beisel, who has the size and physicality to contribute early. The Tigers went out of state for their top prospect, however, stealing Augusta, a 6-4, 275-pound DT from neighboring Illinois.

Edited by RedandBlack4Life!
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It has Kelvin Taylor breaking the All-Time rushing record in the state of Florida; however, Henry, who also played in Florida, broke the All-Time National rushing record. Not sure how that works unless Henry started high school in a different state...

And while this class had the potential to be one for the ages, it is still very talented and cooed end up special in it's own right. This haul adds the kind of depth across the team that is needed to bring home a Championship. Our top 30 showed it's as good as Bama or any other team in college football. What we lacked is quality depth and this class addresses that need and brings some sure fire NFL talent as well...

Great job by the staff and the SEC as a Conference. I expect the SEC's dominance of the national stage to continue on for the foreseeable future...

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the sec just keep getting tougher. the amount of talent the conference is bringing in is really something. 11 of the the 14 sec teams had 25 classes with a 12th in vandy with the 27th ranked class. the worst classes were kentucky and missouri and they were still 36th and 39th nationally. 5 sec west teams were in the top 11 while all 7 were in the top 25. the sec east had 4 top 25 squads. it's amazing that out of 25 teams 11 were in the sec while the other 14 were of all the other conferences combined. just stunning.

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I am mostly a lurker and rarely post even though I decided to join in here recently. That said I have got to say something.

I think this is a better reflection of recruiting evaluation compared to some of the so called stars and rankings. We are dealing with a great deal of uncertainty concerning 17-18 year old immature and not phyically fully developed kids. We don't know how these kids will develop to become a football player. It is all conjecture and ramdom projection. How do you differentiate so called high 3-star and low 4-star? What do you base this on? it is much better to evaluate kids not based on rankings or stars but tier-1 or tier-2 talent that this espn grade somewhat corelates a bit. Tier-1 is a group of talent that could win championships and tier-2 is an average talent that could play some good football if not championship winning talent, and so forth. So this espn grade makes much more sense to me. I know some people are so worked up about stars and rankings. We don't know nothing about until recruits put on pad in college with bigger and faster athletes. All of kids we signed belong to tier-1 talent, IMO and should be able to get us some championships if coaching is up to the level. so it all comes down to coaching and developing this talent. CMR's track record has been outstanding in developing talent considering the number of people drafted in the NFL for the last 10 -12 years CMR has been here.

Edited by Cheg
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