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Recruiting 2013 - Big East Needs & Concerns
Posted Feb 5, 2013

What does each Big East team need, and what are the concerns?

Recruiting 2013 

Big East Needs 

CFN Top Prospects for 2013
- 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 

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Cincinnati | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: New head coach Tommy Tuberville has the offensive pieces in place, but he needs to do some work on a defense that has to replace seven starters. The secondary struggled giving up 252 yards per outing, but it didn't give up a slew of big plays. Now it has to replace all four starters in the defensive backfield, while the linebacking corps has to replace two starters. Not having both starting defensive ends is a problem. Offensively, the front five will be great, but quarterback Brendon Kay, running back George Winn and tight end Travis Kelce have to be replaced.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Defensive backs. Last year Butch Jones went big on the secondary, and Tommy Tuberville did the same thing with JUCO transfers Howard Wilder and Darren Doston out of California ready to go at corner and Mike Tyson arguably the team's best pickup. JUCO transfer Jerrell Jordan will eventually be the team's best tackler, while quarterback Tyler Cogswell out of Florida and receiver Tshumbi Johnson out of Immokalee should be a big part of what Tuberville wants to do offensively.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 30. That Class Was Heavy On ... Secondary. After a few years of going after receivers and skill player, the Bearcats need to strengthen a secondary that’ll be fine for the next two years but needs prospects for 2014 and beyond. Offense won’t be ignored, with head coach Butch Jones going after as many top players for the passing game as possible. Small and speedy Dennis Norfleet could be an instant impact running backs used in a variety of ways. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 48. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. If head coach Butch Jones wants to bomb away, he has the class to do it. The defensive line got the biggest stars with Demetrius Alston, Silverberry Mouhon and Chad West three dangerous ends who can all get into the backfield. Throw in 300-pound Daniel Murray for the inside, and the line is set. Patrick Coyne should be the team’s star quarterback down the road, and Jameel Poteat is a speedy back who’ll be the focal point of the attack sooner than later. The big offensive push is at receiver with Shaquille Washington leading a loaded corps of seven prospects.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 52. That Class Was Heavy On ...
Receivers. Butch Jones had to try to keep Brian Kelly's recruits coming to Cincinnati. Only three receivers were signed, but they'll be the key to the class with Dyjuan Lewis, a 6-2 target with 4.4 speed, the likely No. 1 man in the near future. The line got the most help for the defense with five prospects signed and needing Josh Russ and Cameron Beard to grow into roles on the end by 2013. Safety Arryn Chenault is too good to not get an early look at playing time.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 51. That Class Was Heavy On ... tight ends. Can you say overkill? Cincinnati has signed four of the country’s top 100 tight ends, providing plenty of depth for Ben Guidugli and Kazeem Alli. From the program that turned Connor Barwin into the Big East’s sack leader a year ago, you can count on one or two of these tight ends, like Will Saddler and Mitch Kessel, to switch position at some point in their ‘Cat careers. 

Connecticut | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: Will the offense ever work? The Huskies averaged a pathetic 17.75 points per game with no running game and way too many turnovers. It all starts with a line that gets four starters back, but has to be far stronger in pass protection. Turnover margin has to start becoming a positive after coming up with a mere six picks and six fumble recoveries. The special teams have to be far stronger, especially on kickoff returns, averaging under 20 yards per try, and punting, averaging under 36 yards per boot.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... The passing game. UConn needs more offensive weapons, and it's trying to get them for the passing game with quarterbacks Tim Boyle and Richard Lagow each big passers who can push the ball down the field, and if everything works out well, Noel Thomas, Brian Lemelle and tight end Tommy Myers should help make the air show go. Corner Javon Hadley from Miami is one of the team's better recruits, and linebacker Jalen Stevens is a good get out of South Carolina, but inside linebackers Junior Joseph, Cory Jasudowich and Matt Walsh are all interesting big-tackling prospects.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 67. That Class Was Heavy On ... Quarterbacks. Paul Pasqualoni didn’t have a chance to do much of anything last year, and it showed with a mediocre class that might have been the weakest in the Big East. This year, he needs an upgrade in talent across the board, but he also needs to find a quarterback to build around – or at least challenge Scott McCummings and/or Mike Nebrich down the road. The running game was bad last year, but the passing game has to improve quickly if Johnny McEntee can’t get the job done. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 78. That Class Was Heavy On ... Variety. New head coach Paul Pasqualoni didn’t have time to do much, but he was able to come up with his bookend offensive tackles for the near future with Paul Nwokeji and Xavier Hemingway talented prospects who’ll be great with two years in the weight room. Kamal Abrams should be the team’s No. 1 target in 2014, and linebackers Marquise Vann and Jefferson Ashiru fit the UConn mold and Deson Foxx has more speed than the normal Husky running back, but all eyes will be on quarterback Michael Nebrich to see if he can finally add some pop to the passing game. With his 4.5 speed, he’ll be more of a runner than a bomber.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 67. That Class Was Heavy On ... Linebackers. The stars of the class might be quarterbacks Scott McCummings and Ty-Meer Brown, and they'll have dangerous receiver prospects to throw to in Tebucky Jones and Geremy Davis, but the best aspect of the class is at linebacker with Brandon Steg a sure-thing All-Big East star for the inside and Reuben Frank, Yawin Smallwood, and Josh Alexander all defenders to get excited about.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 72. That Class Was Heavy On ... receivers. Although the Husky quarterbacks haven’t exactly been crisp since Dan Orlovsky graduated, they haven’t been helped by the receivers either. Connecticut had one of the worst units in the country a year ago, which explains why the position got so much attention from Randy Edsall and the staff. Three of the four commits rank among the top 150 receivers, led by Ft. Lauderdale product Dwayne Difton.

Houston | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: Consistency, consistency, consistency. The defense was miserable giving up a Conference USA-worst 483 yards per game, bottoming out in a 72-42 loss to SMU. Even with a tremendous pass rush, the secondary was awful allowing 290 yards per game, but all four starters are back. The run defense wasn't a prize, either, needing to be far stronger against the power running teams. The offense will be terrific with ten starters returning, but the special teams play has to be better after coming up with a Conference USA-worst 3.88 yards per punt return and under 20 yards per kickoff return.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Quarterback. Who wants to be the next Case Keenum or Kevin Kolb? John O'Korn out of the Miami area has the size and the look of a high-octane playmaker, while D'Juan Hines and JUCO transfer Billy Cosh will provide some nice depth in the near future. Running back Joseph Glenn is the second best recruit for the offense behind O'Korn, while receiver Demarcus Ayers is a speedster with good upside. tight ends Deondre Skinner and Chauntez Jackson are good recruits for a team that always uses its offensive options. The team's best recruit is Ty Cummings, considered the nation's top kicker prospect, while linebacker Caleb Tucker and corner Greg Ward are decent players to eventually give the D some help.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 64. That Class Was Heavy On ... Can new head man Tony Levine keep the fun going? Quarterback isn’t a big priority - even with Case Keenum and Cotton Turner gone – thanks to the 2010 class. Receiver isn’t a concern after bringing in a slew of talents last year. The defensive front seven will get the most attention with Levine working hardest for the line while also looking at linebacker for a few key prospects. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 67. That Class Was 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.

Louisville | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: Expectations? With 19 returning starters and a big puffy chest after the Sugar Bowl win, the hype will be through the roof for the Cardinals. However, there's still work to be done for a running game that sputtered and coughed, averaging just 123 yards per game. The defense didn't get into the backfield enough, finishing last in the Big East in sacks and tackles for loss. The special teams are a major issue outside of kicker John Wallace, who hit 16-of-21 field goals. The punting game was the second worst in the nation, the kickoff returners were the third worst, and the punt return game was the Big East's worst.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Linemen. Receiver James Quick is the best recruit by any Big East team, and Kyle Bolin is a good quarterback to develop under Teddy Bridgewater, but the class is about the lines and building up the infrastructure. The offensive side gets Cameron Fraser and Skylar Lacy at tackle - both have the right frame and body to be effective after a few years in the weight room - while defensive tackles De'Asian Richardson and Finesse Middleton are nice gets. Linebacker Donel Elam will eventually be a starter, and Keith Kelsey will someday be one of the team's leading tacklers.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 44. That Class Was Heavy On ... The lines. The defensive line needs prospects to develop for 2014 and beyond, but the bigger need haul should come for the interior of the offensive line that’s set for a while with John Miller and Jake Smith at guard, but with quality depth a must. The Cardinals won’t go heavy on tackles, but they’ll have more than their share of blockers. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 30. That Class Was Heavy On ... Secondary. The star of the show needs to be Teddy Bridgewater, a tall, talented passer out of Miami who moves well and is the type of calm, cool presence to make an offense shine. He spurned Alabama, Auburn, Florida, LSU, and other big names to be the main man for the Cardinal attack, and head coach Charlie Strong hopes he has his Vince Young. He’ll have a terrific target to throw to in 6-3 speedster DeVante Parker, and Eli Rogers and Charles Gaines out of Miami, with Rogers working as Bridgewater’s main man at Miami Northwestern, will help. The strength is in the secondary with safety Gerod Holliman a future Big East star and corners Andrew Johnson and Terrell Floyd two Floridians who could see time right away.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 42. That Class Was Heavy On ... The passing game. New head man Charlie Strong brought in three quarterbacks led by Dominique Brown, and they'll have plenty of targets to work with.  Six wideouts signed on and they all fit a type with decent size and tremendous speed. Michaelee Harris out of Miami is the best of the group, but Stephan Robinson could grow into a dangerous playmaker. The defense has its star to build around in end B.J. Butler, a speed rusher who could've gone to Alabama or Florida.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 63. That Class Was Heavy On ... junior college transfers. Can you smell the desperation coming out of Northern Kentucky? Steve Kragthorpe, in need of instant help, went heavy on JUCO transfers, especially on the defensive side of the ball. The scales tipped overwhelmingly toward the D in this class, though Kragthorpe did land Santa Rosa (Calif.) College QB Andrew Froman, who’ll be in the mix to replace Hunter Cantwell.

Memphis | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: Justin Fuente gets a ton of starters back just in time for the move to the Big East, and now he has to get his offense to work. The plus should be a decent line that gets back four starters, but the passing game that cranked out a mere 167 yards per game has to do more. It came up some big plays down the field, but there wasn't enough production when the defense was giving up points in bunches. 318 yards of total offense isn't going to get it done in the new league.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Skill players. Make this a third time in four years that Memphis picked up several skill players, but Justin Fuente really went nuts trying to improve the overall athleticism and team speed. JUCO receivers Joe Craig and Adrian Henderson are for now, but E.A. Watkins, running back Marquis Warford and quarterback Brayden Scott are for a few years from now. there aren't many standout running backs, but there are plenty of them with a few certain to be moved over to the defensive backfield. Offensive tackle George Roberts might be the team's best recruit, but JUCO transfers Will Dancy and Nykiren Wellington are going to fill out the depth early on.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 86. That Class Was Heavy On ... After going after skill players over the last two classes, Memphis will be hitting the defensive side hard. New head coach Justin Fuentes has to upgrade the offensive line to allow all the young playmakers to shine, and while the Tigers should be fine for the next year or so, Fuentes needs players to develop for 2014. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 73. That Class Was 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.

Rutgers | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: While the program is waiting a year before moving over to the Big Ten, for now, cranking up the running game is a must after averaging a painful 121 yards per game. Jawan Jamison is off to the NFL early, so now it's up to Savon Huggins to live up to his superstar prep hype. The offense only average 330 yards per game for an attack that came up with more than 28 points twice all year. The defense has to replace seven starters including linebackers Khaseem Greene and Steve Beauharnais, but it should be fine. The special teams have to be far better after Kyle Federico and Nick Borgese combined to hit 11-of-19 field goals, the punting game netting just 33 yards per try and the punt returners averaging a mere 4.67 yards per attempt.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Defensive linemen. The secondary got a terrific haul of players with corner Nadir Barnwell as good as any defensive back recruit in the Big East, and Janarion Grant and T.J. Taylor two excellent prospects. Myles Nash and Lester Liston are good linebackers, but the front seven will be better because of the linemen including tackle Josh Klecko and end Sebastian Joseph. Guard Dorian Miller might be the team's best overall recruit, while running back Dontea Ayres and receiver Andre Patton should become starters down the road.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 27. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. Last year, head coach Greg Schiano brought in a terrific class or running backs, and the speed and talent in the defensive backfield was addressed in previous seasons. Now it’s on to the passing game to find QBs Chas Dodd and Gary Nova some playmakers for the next several years. By owning New Jersey as much as possible, Schiano had a terrific class of wideouts coming in. However, now it’ll be a feeding frenzy for prospects with Schiano leaving to take the Tampa Bay job. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 27. That Class Was Heavy On ... Running backs. Rutgers might not have come up with a loaded class in any one area, but no one in the Big East can match the upper-end star power. Losing top corner Lafayette Pitts to Pitt at the last second stung, but getting receiver Miles Shuler, with his sub-4.4 speed, defensive tackle Marquise Wright, and offensive tackle Keith Lumpkin makes the class strong. Keeping running back Savon Huggins at home when Auburn, USC, and other big names came calling was the big coup. The 6-0, 200-pounder will be the centerpiece of the attack, while Charles Davis and Ben Martin are lightning fast rushing options.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 46. That Class Was Heavy On ... Defensive backs. For the second year in a row, Greg Schiano wanted to do whatever it took to upgrade the athleticism of the defensive backfield. The competition should be intense with big-time safety prospects Jordan Thomas, Lorenzo Waters, and Jeremy Deering all big and all fast, and corner Tejay Johnson an great prospect with NFL measurables. 6-6 Brandon Coleman should be the team's next star receiver, but the focus of the offense is on the line with six blockers signed.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 27. That Class Was Heavy On ... defensive backs. The departures of S Courtney Greene and CB Jason McCourty made this unit a priority for Greg Schiano and the Scarlet Knights. Rutgers didn’t have to travel very far to land S Abdul Smith and CB Duron Harmon, two of the best at their positions in the region. Schiano added quality and quantity to the secondary, which will prove especially valuable a year from now.

South Florida | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: New head coach Willie Taggart has to improve the team in just about all areas. First and foremost, the Bulls have to be better in turnover margin after giving it up 28 times and coming up with nine takeaways including two - both against Connecticut - interceptions. The offense died down the stretch scoring a grand total of 35 points in the final four games, while the defense got lit up by anyone who wanted to throw the ball down the field. The special teams could stand to be stronger after cranking out just 17.83 yards per try.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Defensive linemen. Willie Taggart has built up a nice class with several decent talents. The linebacking corps has a good one in JUCO transfer Rahmon Swain and prepsters Mitchell Wright and Nigel Harris. Corner Nate Godwin leads a deep class of defensive backs, but the D is getting the most star power on the front line with Derrick Calloway a potential anchor at tackle and 310-pound Deadrin Senat a big body for the interior. Mike Love needs to add more weight, but he'll turn into a good pass rusher. The offense wasn't ignored, especially on the line with three good guards led by Dominique Threatt and Cameron Ruff.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 72. That Class Was Heavy On ... The lines. Skip Holtz has the skill players in place after loading up over the last few years, and the defensive front was addressed heavily three years ago. Now the D could use a boost up front for down the road, while the offensive line has a depth issue that has to be addressed as soon as possible. Holtz is mining the JUCO ranks and is going outside of the state to bring in talent. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 58. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. The offensive line got a huge boost with Max Lang, Darrell Williams, and Boo Simon all good tackle prospects who should be the anchors up front in the next three years, and the defense got some help with Corian Hamilton and Chris Garye two strong safety prospects, but the stars of the class are at receiver with Andre Davis a local product who should become a special No. 1 target. Ruben Gonzalez and Alex Mut are also nice gets who’ll boost up the Skip Holtz passing attack.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 47. That Class Was Heavy On ... Skill players. Skip Holtz had roughly five minutes to work, but he still kept most of the key players Jim Leavitt originally pitched. Jamius Gunsby is a big, athletic playmaker of a quarterback who'll get a few years to develop, while Marcus Shaw and Tiger Powell are good looking speed backs who could find roles early on if JUCO transfer Michael Hayes and his 4.3 speed doesn't take over the workload. Jamaal Mantague and Deonte Welch might not be five-star receiver prospects, but they're going to be good. Defensively, JUCO transfer Claude Davis will be asked to step in right away and fill a gaping hole at one end, and top corner Terrence Mitchell will get a chance to see time in the rotation.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 25. That Class Was Heavy On ... The defensive line. Can you say epic haul? Jim Leavitt is retooling his defensive front on the fly, with a mix of talented ends and tackles from junior college, post-graduate schools, and high schools. George Selvie, Aaron Harris, and Terrell McClain won’t be around forever, so it was important to bring new reinforcements to ensure the success of the defense for the foreseeable future. DT Leslie Stirrups was supposed to be one of the cornerstones of the 2006 class, but is just now making it to Tampa after problems with grades.

SMU | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: The Mustangs have some huge replacements to be made on both sides of the ball, especially on the defensive line that loses all three starters including huge pass rusher Margus Hunt. Three starters are gone on an offensive line that was awful in pass protection, but the biggest problem is with an inefficient passing game that was never consistent. The secondary that gets back all four starters has to be far tighter after giving up 278 yards per game.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Defensive backs. This is a huge class with a little something for everywhere, but June Jones has signed on a ton of safeties to play around with. They're almost all big, and with a little time in the weight room, some of them like Myles Crosby could become smallish linebackers. J'Marcus Rhodes should be the best of the lot, but linebacker Roderick Moore could be the team's best defensive pickup. the star of the class is running back Traylon Shead, who'll almost certainly come in and be a part of the starting equation right away. Tight end Jeremiah Gaines and offensie tackle Travis Fister will be good Big East players.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 60. That Class Was Heavy On ... The defensive line. June Jones went hard after the offense the last few years to get the players he needs to run his attack, and now it’s time to fortify the front wall that’s going to need prospects to develop for 2014. The offense won’t be ignored, but the key players are going to be for the line instead of among the skill players.

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 51. That Class Was 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.

Temple | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: Do the Owls have the chops to hang around in the Big East? They won two games in their new conference, but the offense didn't work, failing to get past 20 points more than once in the final seven games. The passing game that hasn't worked for years was painfully inefficient and only averaged 121 yards per game. The secondary wasn't much better for the league's worst defense, getting toasted time and again despite getting plenty of help from a good pass rush. Both starting safeties, Vaughn Carraway and Justin Gildea, have to be replaced.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Running backs. Matt Rhule didn't come up with a big haul of top talents like Al Golden was able to get, and he didn't go after receivers after Steve Addazio went heavy on pass catchers over the last two years, but he came up with some nice runners in Zaire Williams and Brandon Peoples to add some more punch to the ground game in a few years. Linebacker Buddy Brown and guard Matt Barone are Big East players, but the Owls need more of them. For a program that struggles so much to crank out points, kicker Jim Cooper could be an underappreciated signing.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 53. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. Steve Addazio wants a passing game, and it’s going to come from a loaded receiving corps helped by a third straight class of prospects. It’s a huge haul of targets coming in, but the running game isn’t being ignored with Montrell Dobbs a terrific talent who could fill in for the departed Bernard Pierce right away. Defensively, the secondary gets a ton of talent with safeties Sam Benjamin and Stephaun Marshall the best tandem recruited by anyone in the MAC. 

2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 88. That Class Was Heavy On ... Receivers. After loading up on skill players last year, the offense should be far better in a hurry. Apparently, new head man Steve Addazio wants bodies to throw to. The passing game got an instant infusion with 6-4 JUCO bomber Clinton Grainger coming in to chuck it around, and five wide receivers, highlighted by a fantastic get in Daquan Cooper and JUCO transfers Malcolm Eugene and Tyron Eugene to make plays.

2010 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 76. That Class Was Heavy On ...
Skill players. For a program that has struggled so much to put points on the board, and has had so many issues getting things moving through the air, the passing game got some special attention. Al Golden has gone big on skill guys in the past, and last year was supposed to be about the offensive line and RB Bernard Pierce turned into something special. This year, RB Myron Ross is a big thumper who should make a difference while WRs Antonio Belt and Deon Miller might be better than anyone currently on the roster. This is an instant impact class of receivers.

2009 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 90. That Class Was Heavy On ... Guards. Temple has gone heavy on skill players over the last few years, loading up on receivers and running backs last year, and it also brought in the guards. The Owls did it again with several very good prospects for the interior of the offensive line with Cody Bohler and Darryl Pringle ready-made blockers who could make an impact right away. The best prospect for the front is Kadeem Custis, a tackle.

UCF | The 2013 Recruiting Class

Team Concerns For 2013: The move to the Big East should be a good one with plenty of talent returning, but the offense has to be a little stronger after averaging 407 yards per game at the slightly lower level. The offensive line did the job against Conference USA teams, but it couldn't get much of a push against Ohio State or Missouri, and it failed the first time around against Tulsa. The punting game has to be better after losing Jamie Boyle, who averaged a pedestrian 40.6 yards per try for a team that netted 35 yards a pop.

The 2013 Class Is Heavy On ... Defensive backs. The Knights are looking toward the future at quarterback with Pete DiNovo and Justin Holman two interesting passers to develop, but running back Micah Reed is the team's best offensive pickup. Linebacker Mario Mathis was a good get out of Georgia, and end Seyvon Lowry was a great recruit out of Jacksonville, but it's the secondary that's getting the most help led by safety Justin McDonald and corner Shaquem Griffin. Dorian Killings and Shaquill Griffin, Shaquem's brother, are good-sized speedy corners.

2012 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 117. That Class Was Heavy On ... A passing game. The Knights haven’t been big on pushing the ball down the field under head coach George O’Leary, choosing to mostly pound away with the ground attack. The quarterback situation is solid for the next few seasons with Jeff Godfrey and Blake Bortles in place, but adding more to the receiving corps would be nice. The program hasn’t gone hard after skill players in a few years, but this season that should change.
2011 CFN Recruiting Ranking: 54. That Class Was 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.