The national signing day in February is five months away but many of the top-rated players in the country already have made oral commitments and the leading programs have filled their rosters with young talent. At the moment, Texas has a slight edge over Alabama in the annual recruiting sweepstakes.
1. Texas: Coach Mack Brown has dominated the state of Texas, landing running back Malcolm Brown of San Antonio, the No. 10 player in the nation. He got several impact players, including the best player in Arizona, offensive lineman Christian Westerman of Chandler, a 6-5, 293-pounder who is rated as the No. 22 player in the country.
2. Alabama: The Crimson Tide could pass Texas because coach Nick Saban still have more scholarships to offer. Saban did a good job in-state but went out-of-state to get linebacker Trey DePriest of Springfield, Ohio, and linebacker Shannon Brown from Georgia. He also got the No. 1 player in Alabama, linebacker Brent Calloway of Russellville.
3. LSU. Coach Les Miles hasn't lost any of the top players in Louisiana. He got running back Kenny Hilliard of Patterson, offensive lineman La'El Collins of Baton Rouge, running back Jeremy Hill of Baton Rouge and wide receiver Jarvis Landry of Lutcher. Why is Louisiana so productive? Because it is a blue-collar state and the more blue-collar a state is, the more likely it will produce great players. Remember, football is a blue-collar sport.
4. Ohio State: It isn't a good year for talent in the Midwest but it is an OK year in Ohio. The Buckeyes got the No. 1 quarterback in the nation in Braxton Miller of Huber Heights, a worthy successor to Terrelle Pryor. They also got Brian Bobek of Palatine Fremd, the best center in the Midwest, and running back Kenny Hayes of Toledo, Ohio.
5. Florida: The Gators always do well in-state but they also did well out-of-state this year by landing 6-7, 310-pound offensive lineman Trip Thurman from Delaware, the best player that state has produced since Kwame Harris went to Stanford and was a first-round draft choice in the NFL. They also got Jeff Driskel, the No. 2 quarterback in the nation.
6. Florida State. Jimbo Fisher has been in charge of recruiting in Tallahassee for the last three years and now he is in his first season as head coach. He got running back/linebacker James Wilder of Tampa, the nation's No. 1 player, and safety Karlos Williams of Davenport, Fla., the No. 9 player in the country.
7. Oklahoma: The Sooners have done well in Texas, getting wide receiver Tre Metoyer and defensive tackle Marquis Anderson. They also went to Kansas City for tight endDan Patko and to South Dakota for 6-8, 320-pound offensive tackle Derel Farniok.
8. Stanford: This is the highest that Stanford has ranked in years. Coach Jim Harbaugh is proving to be one of the elite recruiters in the nation. He got the No. 1 player in Colorado, offensive lineman Brandon Austin; the No. 1 player in eastern Washington, tight end Charlie Hopkins; the top linebacker in Georgia, James Vaughters; and the top running back in Indiana, Remound Wright of Fort Wayne.
9. Clemson: The running back duo of Mike Bellamy of Port Charlotte, Fla., and Marlon Lane of Daytona Beach, Fla., will form another pony express backfield. Two other standouts are defensive back Cortez Davis of Daytona Beach and wide receiver Charon Peake from South Carolina.
10. Notre Dame: New coach Brian Kelly is making an instant impact. He got the No. 1 player in New Mexico, offensive lineman Matt Hegarty; the No. 1 player in Pennsylvania, tight end Ben Koyack; one of the top three players in Michigan, running back Justice Hayes; and three of the best prospects in Florida in defensive end Aaron Lynch, defensive end Anthony Rabasa and offensive lineman Jordan Prestwood.
Five schools that are on the edge of breaking into the top 10 are USC, North Carolina, Auburn, Nebraska and Iowa.