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Recruiting 2011 - C-USA Team Rankings

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Feb 5, 2011


Ranking and analyzing the 2011 Conference USA Recruiting Classes

Recruiting 2011 

Conference USA Rankings

Recruiting 2011 | Recruiting 2010 | Recruiting 2009

CFN Top Prospects for 2011

- No. 1 to 50 | No. 51 to 100 | No. 101 to 150
- No. 151 to 200No. 201 to 250 | No. 251 to 300
- Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Receivers
- Tight Ends | Off. Tackles | Guards & Centers 
- Def. Ends | Def. Tackles | Linebackers | Corners | Safeties 
- 2009 CFN Top 150 | 2010 CFN Top 200  
 
- 2011 Conference USA Recruiting Lists
- 5 Conference USA Recruits You Should Care About
- 2010 SEC Recruiting Rankings
- Recruiting 2011  

East

1. UCF | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … The defensive front seven. Release the hounds. UCF signed two terrific corners in Bruce Dukes and Jeremy Davis, and the offense wasn’t ignored, but the class is loaded with strong players on the defensive front seven. Troy Gray is a safety-sized outside linebacker who should pair with middle prospect Miles Pace to give the Knights a strong corps in a few years, while JUCO transfers Toby Jackson and Cameron Henderson should be fantastic right away at the ends. With a little time, Demetric Anderson could be an anchor of a tackle.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 63. That Class Was Heavy On ... Offensive line. The offense has been hit-or-miss when the running game wasn't working, and now George O'Leary is taking care of the front wall to keep pounding away. Jose Jose has more than just a terrific name, he's one of the nation's better interior line prospects and should see time at center. Torian Wilson, Justin McCray, and Jordan McCray are large guards who should grow into key cogs for the ground attack, while 6-7, 310-pound Tony Jacob will be a key starting tackle soon.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 57. That Class Was Heavy On ... defensive backs. After losing the entire starting secondary to graduation, this was an absolute priority for George O’Leary and the Knights. The program did a magnificent job a few years ago of taking two-star players, such as CB Joe Burnett, and molding them into defensive stoppers. It may not have to do much coaching up of CB Josh Robinson, an outstanding all-around playmaker, who also drew interest from Michigan, South Carolina, and West Virginia.

2. Marshall | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Quarterback. The last two classes have loaded up on receivers, and Levern Jacobs is a 4.4 speedster coming in this year, but the Herd needs more pop to the passing game and hopes to get it with three interesting options. 6-5 Blake Frohnapfel is a chucker, Cornelius Jones if coming in from Fort Union Military Academy to try to challenge right away, and Rakeem Cato out of Miami can do a little bit of everything. Tight ends Rakim Reed and Eric Frohnapfel will be big factors in a few years.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 80. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. If nothing else, new head man Doc Holliday will have plenty of pass catchers to use in a rotation. Last year's Herd class was full of big, strong receivers. This year's class is loaded with small, quick ones led by the lightning-quick Fred Pickett. Josh Lovell is a do-it-all tight end who could be good enough to be better than Cody Slate with a little bit of work, while Jazz King, Antwon Chisolm, and Demetrius Evans are all talented enough to be given a long look for early playing time. New quarterback Eddie Sullivan will have plenty of practice options to play around with.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 102. That Class Was Heavy On ... wide receivers. The Herd has loaded up on a bunch of big, physical wide receivers that other schools felt were a little unpolished at this stage of their careers. A collection of athletes who all go at least 6-2, most are expected to do an apprenticeship in 2009 before being turned loose. A local kid, C.J. Crawford is both big and very fast. Wayne Bonner, on the other hand, comes via East Mississippi Junior College, and is most likely to chip in right away.

3. Memphis | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Skill players. What do you get for the team that needs everything? Everything. Larry Porter sprinkled in a few linemen here, a couple of defensive backs there, and a lot of skill players to try to jump-start the offense sooner than later. Big passers Domonique Harris and Taylor Reed will fight it out for time in the near future, but running back Artaves Gibson will be expected to see work immediately and the hope will be for Ryan Byrd and/or Jermaine Johnson to be a No. 1 receiver early on.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 78. That Class Was Heavy On ... Quarterbacks. New head coach Larry Porter isn't going to start out his era without any firepower. JUCO running back Ketarus Stanton and running back Jerrell Rhodes and Sean Farr from Hargrave Military Academy might be plugged in immediately. It'll be an interesting battle for the starting quarterback gig with four passers brought in. Kevin Wright is the best of the bunch, but JUCO transfer Andy Summerlin is ready right now. He'll be in spring ball and might have the inside track for the No. 1 spot.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 95. That Class Was Heavy On ... offensive linemen. Faced with some turnover in the trenches, Tommy West aimed to keep the area replenished by inking five linemen no smaller than 6-4 and 275 pounds. Of the group, G Ricky Hart really has Tiger fans excited. A 6-3, 315-pound drive blocker, who was pursued by the ACC and SEC, he’ll likely spend just one year as a backup before moving into the starting lineup.

4. East Carolina | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Defensive linemen. What does the worst defense in America need? People who can actually play defense. JUCO defensive ends John Lattimore and Leroy Vick are versatile enough to be moved around, while 290-pound Will Foxx has anchor potential. The biggest position upgrade could be at safety where Danny Webster and Domonique Lennon might be used out of the gate. Offensively, JUCO transfer Reggie Bullock is an intriguingly fast running back.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 99. That Class Was Heavy On ... Offensive tackles. New head coach Ruffin McNeill didn't have any time to do anything with the recruiting class, but he ended up getting four excellent offensive linemen to contribute right away. JUCO transfer Anthony Garrett will be an instant factor on the tackle depth chart, while Drew Gentry and Taylor Hudson were two of the team's best recruits.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 83. That Class Was Heavy On ... defensive backs. The Pirates have chosen to accentuate a team strength by bolstering an already talented secondary. Six defensive backs are the backbone of a relatively small class put together by Skip Holtz and his assistants. Damonte Terry, the top safety in the mix, is still raw, but has the speed and athletic ability to overshoot his grade at some point down the road.

5. Southern Miss | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Receivers. The Golden Eagles brought in a ton of players after going for the quick JUCO fix last year, and while the lines are getting plenty of work and JUCO corners Clifford Johnson and Martez Thompson will see time right away, this class is about lots and lots of pass-catching prospects, including tight end Collin Jarbo. JUCO transfer Jhyrtn Taylor is is the best receiver of the bunch, but speedy Tray Becton and Cooper Harrington could make a bigger impact before they’re through.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 56. That Class Was Heavy On ... Skill players. Head coach Larry Fedora went big on JUCO transfers last year, and he got a few instant helpers this season with CB Reggie Hunt and massive offensive tackles Lamar Holmes and Jason Weaver certain to be in the rotation immediately, but mostly the Golden Eagle class is setting up the future for the offense. Two quarterbacks, four running backs, and four receivers were signed with JUCO transfer Kelvin Bolden a potential instant impact player at one wideout spot and Markese Triplett a big 6-4 target to build around for the future.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 61. That Class Was Heavy On ... JUCO transfers. His program headed in the right direction, Larry Fedora sought out players capable of keeping the momentum going right now. A league-high six junior-college players, four on offense and two of defense, will help fill in the holes at tight end, linebacker, and offensive tackle. LB Hendrick Leverette is already being counted on to offset Gerald McRath’s departure, and 6-5, 265-pound David Rue is angling to catch some of the passes that used to go to Shawn Nelson.

6. UAB | Scout List  

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Kickers. After two big classes and working on the skill positions last year, UAB got a little bit of everything without loading up on any one spot. JUCO transfers Lamar Johnson and Calvin Jones will be used right away in the secondary, and some big prospects, led by the 6-3, 343-pound Uneik Crumbley, are brought in for the line. Apparently, though, one of the big concerns is Josh Zahn, the team’s placekicker who followed up a 14-of-21 2009 with a 7-of-17 field goal 2010 season. Kickers Colin Anderson and Ty Long were brought into provide a challenge. Considering six games last year were decided by five points or fewer, a good kicker is a must.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 108. That Class Was Heavy On ... Skill players. The offense was Joe Webb, Joe Webb, and Joe Webb last year, and now there's an immediate infusion of talent to try to change that with seven wide receivers, four of them from the JUCO ranks, led by big Darnell Williams; the team's instant No. 1 target. Five running backs, including two JUCO transfers, were brought in, while the star should be Greg Franklin.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 96. That Class Was Heavy On ... safeties. Of the 24 new Blazers signed by Neil Callaway, a big portion is projected as safeties once they arrive in Birmingham. That’s not such a bad thing, considering last year’s starters, Will Dunbar and Matt Taylor, were seniors. The two junior-college transfers, Hiram Atwater and Elliott McGaskin, should be ready to compete right away, and David Conner was good enough to get mail from Auburn, Ole Miss, and Mississippi State.

West

1. SMU | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Outside linebacker. The June Jones offense needs receivers, and after loading up last year, the offense got yet another influx of talent with Arrius Holleman and Ronnell Sims two dangerous targets. The defensive line loaded up with several strong hybrid prospects, while the linebacking corps got several safety-sized, speedy players with Devon Moreland a terrific get and Jonathan Yenga and Cameron Smith two promising recruits.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 73. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. After putting the building blocks in place with a big recruiting class of offensive linemen last year, June Jones is getting the receivers to make his style of offense fly. With Shawnbrey McNeal leaving early for the NFL, there was a hole to fill at running back and freshman Darryl Fields might fill it, but the bulk of the class is at receiver with eight prospects coming in led by Kyle Guinyard, a potential No. 1 target who had offers from several Big 12 schools.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 65. That Class Was Heavy On ... offensive linemen. What good is the run-and-shoot if the quarterback is always running for his life? In fine shape at the skill positions for the next few years, June Jones loaded up on linemen, many of whom will need to spend their first year adding girth and weight. In Ben Hughes and Joey Fontana, the Mustangs signed two of the nation’s top 10 centers, so replacing Mitch Enright in 2010 shouldn’t be a major headache.

2. Houston | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Receivers. The 2010 class brought in several strong quarterback prospects, and they’re going to need someone to throw to. The Cougars are looking to stop someone from throwing, and now, with JUCO corners Chevy Bennett and D.J. Hayden, but the offense got the bulk with several nice receivers. Daniel Spencer and C.J. McElroy are short, quick targets, while 6-3, Mark Roberts has the potential to be a No. 1 in time. RB Kenny Farrow and QB Bram Kohlhausen will fight for starting jobs in the near future.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 54. That Class Was Heavy On ... Quarterbacks. The miserable run defense got a big piece to the puzzle with 285-pound JUCO transfer Matangi Tonga an almost certain instant starter in the defensive interior, and linebacker Sammy Brown will get a job from Day One at one of the spots. The secondary was also addressed with three excellent corners in Dominique Sanders, Alton Demby, and Zach McMillen. The highlight of the class, though, was at quarterback where four prospects were brought in to develop in a hurry with Case Keenum leaving next year. Terrance Broadway came in from Baton Rouge, after getting offers from Alabama, Nebraska, and Oregon, and could be the most interesting of the candidates, Aaron Johnson is a great athlete who got offers to switch positions from several big-name schools, and David Piland comes in from Carroll High in Southlake, famous for Chase Daniel, among others.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 58. That Class Was Heavy On ... offensive linemen. The loss of three starting linemen to graduation prompted Kevin Sumlin to spend extra time cultivating the next generation of Cougar blockers. Three new tackles and three new guards provide a nice foundation for the future and the present. At tackle, for instance, Ralph Oragwu is a three-star high-schooler with enormous upside and Roy Watts is a ready-made JUCO transfer, who turned away offers from SEC and Big 12 suitors.

3. Tulsa | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Cornerback. The offense should keep on rolling under new head coach Bill Blankenship, but the nation’s worst pass defense has to stop someone for the team to make a big step toward a Conference USA title. While the defensive line got the most bodies, and Gus Johnson and Zack Langer are interesting running backs, the focus is on cornerback with Kwame Sexton a potential No. 1, shutdown defender and Dwight Dobbins a good prospect. JUCO transfer J.D. Ratliff will be used immediately.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 93. That Class Was Heavy On ... The defensive front. RB Ja'Terian Douglas is the star of the class and Thomas Roberson should be a No. 1 wide receiver early on, but the key is the defensive front. JUCO transfers Tyrunn Walker and Darrell Zellars will be in the rotation right away, and Durrell Finch, another JUCO transfer, has the speed to be a dangerous pass rusher. With a little bit of time, DT Alec Henry could be the best of the bunch.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 77. That Class Was Heavy On ... wide receivers. The resignation of offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn does not signal a change in philosophy at Tulsa, which still plans to wing it around out of no-huddle sets. With that in mind, the Hurricane is bringing in a bunch of receivers, most of whom are undersized flyers in the mold of current flanker Damaris Johnson. The gem of the newcomers is Ricky Johnson, who could have gone to any number of SEC schools.

4. Rice | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Defensive linemen. Rice HAS to start generating more of a pass rush. The defense was 105th in the nation in sacks and was dead last in tackles for loss, and while it’s asking way too much to get a new recruiting class to make a difference in one years, the Owls have to hope that one of the several new defensive ends can provide a boost to the depth. Michael Sam is the best of the lot, while outside linebacker Nick Elder could be the playmaker the D is looking for. Offensively, receivers Driphus Jackson and Lovett Gibson should be the stars of the haul.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 101. That Class Was Heavy On ... 2009. Last year's class was the one that's going to make the difference over the next few seasons, and there weren't many spots to fill this year. However, it's about quality over quantity with this class needing DE Dylan Klare, CB Bryce Callahan, and linebackers James Radcliffe and Cameron Nwoso likely to be key Conference USA players sooner than later. But if the stars bust out, there's no a lot from this class to fall back on.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 76. That Class Was Heavy On ... defensive backs. When you give up 34 touchdown passes and finish 110th nationally in pass D, you better focus on signing more athletes for the secondary. David Bailiff did exactly that, adding eight two-star defensive backs from as far away as Minnesota and Canada. Out of that group, the Owls are hopeful that, in time, two or three will develop into starters and productive members of a needy defense.

5. UTEP | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Quarterbacks. And the replacement for Trevor Vittatoe is … ? There’s hope from the JUCO ranks with the lightning fast Antavius Sims and Nick Lamaison looking to step in and start right away, while 6-4 Blaire Sullivan was brought in to develop for the future. The defense got some instant help with Josh Fely a ready-made JUCO middle linebacker and Zoey Williams a shutdown corner who could see time as a true freshman.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 77. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. The Miners have needed to work on improving the defense for the last several seasons and came up with a big class of defenders last season. The D was hardly ignored this year, especially on the line, but the talent is at receiver eight very big, very interesting prospects signed including Jordan Leslie, Darius Tubbs, and Devin Patterson. These three will be the key to the Miner passing game sooner than later.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 100. That Class Was Heavy On ... defensive linemen. In an attempt to beef up one of the perennially weakest defenses in the country, the Miners are bringing in a couple of speedy rush ends and a tackle with considerable upside. At 6-5 and 250 pounds, Adam Ayala can snap off a sub-5.00 in the forty. If he can add some muscle without losing a step, he has a chance to be an impact player on this defense.

6. Tulane | Scout List

The 2011 Class Is Heavy On … Pass catchers. The Green Wave got plenty of receivers in 2009, and while there aren’t any sure-thing stars in this class, there’s strength in numbers. Marc Edwards is the most promising prospect of the bunch, and quick Devin Boutte is promising. Tight end was a target with three new recruits including Greg Thomson out of Syracuse and pass catcher Josh Drum. Safety Renaldo Thomas needs to be a starter sooner than later.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 88. That Class Was Heavy On ... Linebackers. The Green Wave has to do something about its defense, and while there isn't any instant help from this class, there are plenty of safety-sized athletes who will upgrade the athleticism and the potential. Ray Oppman will be a fixture on the inside within the next three years, while Zach Davis could be an ideal strong safety or a dangerous playmaker as an outside linebacker. Jamar Thomas has the potential to be the next great Green Wave running back.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 79. That Class Was Heavy On ... receivers. When Jeremy Williams was injured last season, the Green Wave passing attack virtually shut down. That lack of depth and reliable options at wide receiver has prompted Bob Toledo to scour Texas and Louisiana high schools for offensive weapons that can stretch a defense. While there are no sure-things in the group, D.J. Banks and Devin Figaro look like pretty good prospects, and the quantity alone should reap a productive player or two.