College Football National Signing Day Is Today. Players can sign from December 21-23 or wait until the normal signing period, which starts on February 1. Alabama currently holds the top spot with 20 recruits in the ESPN 300.
Why Signing Day Matters
Since 2007, no team has won more games than Alabama. How have they been able to sustain success? The Tide have had the No. 1 overall class according to ESPN seven times in its 17-year history. No other school has had more than two top-ranked classes. Each of the 8 National Championships in the Playoff Era have been won by a team in the Top 5 of 10-year recruiting average. This year’s College Football Playoff participants have a few of the regulars but also a couple new faces. If Georgia or Ohio State win the national title, the streak will continue.
The No. 1 overall recruit is QB Malachi Nelson, who is off to USC to play for Lincoln Riley. He’s the 3rd No. 1 ranked recruit for the Trojans in the ESPN 300 era, joining Joe McKnight in 2007 and Matt Barkley in 2009. He’ll be teaming up with fellow Top-10 recruit WR Zachariah Branch. This class also marks the first time USC has had multiple Top-10 recruits since 2007.
While Malachi Nelson did take the top spot in the ESPN 300 rankings, no recruitment generated more buzz than that of QB Arch Manning. Much has been made of his visit to Texas over the summer and his subsequent commitment to the Longhorns. With a 93 grade, Manning is the highest-graded recruit for the Longhorns in the ESPN 300 era. He’s also the Longhorns’ first Top-5 recruit in the last 10 seasons.
Another pocket-passing QB takes the 3rd spot in the ESPN 300, with Dante Moore committing to play at Oregon. Prior to this year, no class had 3 QBs in the Top 10, much less occupying the top 3spots. In fact, the only other class with multiple QBs in the Top 10 was the 2018 class, which featured Trevor Lawrence and Justin Fields.
The “U” Is Back-Again?
Rounding out the Top 5 are a pair of recruits headed to “The U.” Coach Cristobal and Miami received commitments from both CB Cormani McClain and OT Francis Mauigoa, tying the Hurricanes for the 3rd most top-5 recruits in a single class in the ESPN 300 era (2007 USC and 2021 Ohio State each had 3). At No. 4 in the class, Cormani McClain becomes the highest-ranked Miami recruit in the ESPN 300 era. Despite one of the worst seasons in 2022 Mario Cristobal has cleaned house and the Miami Hurricanes currently have the #3 recruiting class in the country. That says a lot about Cristobal and his ability to recruit. Now this has to translate on the field.
I am not going to fall into the “U” is back again storyline until I see this team on the field in September of 2023. But there is no question that expectations are going to be very high once again and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Hurricanes are pre-season top 25 team. We will keep you updated on all the signings today on Shemon and Sheppard 2-6pm.