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2008 Big Ten Recruiting - What It All Means
Ohio State WR DeVier Posey
Ohio State WR DeVier Posey
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Feb 11, 2008


How does the 2008 Big Ten recruiting class really affect the college football world? Which programs, like Ohio State getting WR DeVier Posey, did the best job this recruiting season? Now that the storm has died down, here's what it all really means.

Recruiting 2008 ... Big Ten
Ranking the Big Ten classes

 
Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Michigan | Michigan State | Minnesota
Northwestern | Ohio State | Penn State | Purdue | Wisconsin

- 2007 CFN Big Ten Recruiting Rankings
- 2006 CFN Big Ten Recruiting Rankings

1. Ohio State
The class is heavy on ... The defensive front seven. The lines should be among the best in the country for several years to come, especially on the defensive interior, with tackles Garrett Goebel, Willie Mobley and Shawntel Rowell all NFL-caliber prospects. Ends Keith Wells and Nathan Williams could've gone anywhere, while linebackers Etienne Sabino and Andrew Sweat might be the two best inside prospects in America. Offensive tackles Mike Adams and J.B. Shugarts will be blocks in 2010 and beyond, while C Michael Brewster could be the best offensive line recruit in the country.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... OT Mike Adams
The player you might care about this year ... WR DeVier Posey
What it all means to the real world of college football ... After a so-so 2007 recruiting season, OSU came roaring back with a loaded class, especially on the lines, while there's a decent skill player for each spot with QB Orhian Johnson, RB Lamaar Thomas and WR DeVier Posey coming in. Overall, this is a class for the future; this was the building block for the 2010 season.

2. Michigan
The class is heavy on ... Running backs. There might not be any quarterbacks coming in, hoping for Terrelle Pryor will be the man to run the Rich Rodriguez attack, but the backfield is more than loaded with good running backs who fit the system. Sam McGuffie is a small, quick back, Terrence Robinson is a small, lightning fast runner, and Michael Shaw and Mike Cox can also move. For anyone who thought the new offense would mean the top receivers would stay away, think again. Daryl Stonum, Martavious Odoms and Roy Roundtree are as good as any recent trio brought in.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... CB Boubacar Cissoko
The player you might care about this year ... RB Sam McGuffie
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Everything is there but the quarterback. This is a stronger class than any Rodriguez ever got at West Virginia. He brought in the building blocks for the future with a great line, an excellent secondary, and running backs and receivers who'll make the rest of the Big Ten quake. If Pryor signs, then all of a sudden this class goes from excellent to special.

3. Illinois
The class is heavy on ... Receivers. The Illinois passing game hasn't been anything special, but it got a potential superstar in Arrelious Benn last year and loaded up with five excellent prospects, led by A.J. Jenkins and Cordale Scott, but the best pass catcher of the bunch could be TE Hubie Graham. The secondary is also loaded, especially at corner, but safety Donsay Hardeman could be the star of the class.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... DE Corey Liuget
The player you might care about this year ... S Donsay Hardeman
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Last year's class opened up eyes, and skepticism, across the college football world, and while this year's haul isn't anywhere near as strong, it's really, really good. Ron Zook built on the Rose Bowl season, and his reputation as a top-notch recruiter, by continuing to haul in some big-time playmakers. There's no excuse for the Illini to not be good for the next several years with the talent coming into Champaign.

4. Wisconsin
The class is heavy on ... The defensive line. Led by Tyler Westphal, the Badger defensive front was the strength of the class by far with four terrific ends and three decent tackles. While the bulk was for the defensive side of the line, the most talented players are on the offensive side with tackles Peter Konz and Joe Schafer, and guards Kevin Zeitler and Jake Current.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... LB Leonard Hubbard
The player you might care about this year ... DE Tyler Westphal
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Few programs develop talent within a system better than Wisconsin. Most of the in-state stars continue to stay at home, while Bret Bielema and his staff branched out into Texas to get three key defensive backs and Florida to keep mining for potentially decent depth. Next year will have to address the skill positions.

5. Minnesota
The class is heavy on ... Defensive tackles. The bulk of the class is in the receiving corps, but the big help is on the defensive line where head coach Tim Brewster tried to instantly provide some anchors to rebuild the nation's worst defense. JUCO transfer Tim McGee has to pay off from day one, while Brandon Kirksey and Jewhan Edwards could see time early on.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... QB MarQueis Gray
The player you might care about this year ... DT Tim McGee
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Brewster was hired because of his recruiting ability, and now that he had a full year to work, he came through with one of the program's best classes in years. Most interesting to note is the quarterback situation. Adam Weber was one of the team's only playmakers last year, Clint Brewster, the coach's son, was one of the team's top recruits last season, and now MarQueis Gray comes aboard as a top-notch talent who'll have to wait, but will get every shot to win the starting gig. Is JUCO transfer David Pittman going to sit and hope to get a shot, or is he going to be moved to another position? It'll be a fun spring.

6. Penn State
The class is heavy on ... Defense, for the second straight year. Last year's linebacker prospects were strong, and this year's trio of Michael Zordich, Michael Mauti and Mike Yancich are all big-time talents. The defensive line has a speed rusher in Jack Crawford and three decent tackle prospects, while safety D'Anton Lynn should be a good one.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... LB Mike Yancich
The player you might care about this year ... LB Michael Zordich
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Call this a wait-and-see recruiting season since next year will need to be the big year. There weren't a lot of openings available, but the staff made the scholarships count with a slew of four-star talents across the board and few fliers taken on long shots. This isn't a class for right now, but it's a class for the very near future to at least boost the depth.

7. Iowa
The class is heavy on ... Skill players. Last year was about the defense, and this year it's about boosting an offense that went into the tank once injuries and other issues started to strike. John Wienke and James Vandenburg will be competing for the same starting quarterback gig in a few years, but the most interesting battles could be at running back with five decent options coming aboard. Ready to anchor the line is a familiar name, center James Ferentz.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... QB John Wienke
The player you might care about this year ... RB Nathan Guillory
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Iowa has always made due with less than top-notch talent coming in, but things have slipped over the last few years. In the past, head coach Kirk Ferentz and his staff always made due no matter what was happening and what kind of adversity struck, but now there needs to be more developed depth. This class, at least offensively, should provide it for the future.

8. Purdue
The class is heavy on ... Running backs. Only two are coming in, but they're fantastic. Albert Evans and Ralph Bolden are speedsters to complement the passing game that should shine after going heavy on the passing game last year and loading up on receivers this season. JUCO transfers Aaron Valentin and Arsenio Curry might not be considered top prospects, but they'll see time early on.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... QB Caleb Terbush
The player you might care about this year ... OT Kenny Plue
What it all means to the real world of college football ... This is the Danny Hope class to be ready after succeeding Joe Tiller. There isn't a lot of help to finish off the Tiller era with this group almost all pointing towards the future. The program could use a few killer playmakers to emerge soon, but outside of the running backs, they might not come from this class.

9. Michigan State
The class is heavy on ... Wide receivers. Last year was about the lines, and this year is about boosting the passing game with five receivers brought in, led by Fred Smith. TE Tyler Hoover is a huge target at 6-8 and around 250 pounds, and he should eventually be a go-to target. The running game wasn't ignored with three good prospects led by the very, very fast twosome of Glenn Winston and Caulton Ray.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... LB Steve Gardiner
The player you might care about this year ...WR Fred Smith
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Head coach Mark Dantonio didn't have a full season to recruit last year and did better than he did this year. There weren't a ton of openings, but the defense was an afterthought without any sure-thing starters coming in. Finding a quarterback will be job one next year, and fortifying the defensive front seven will be part two. Basically, this needs to be a class to fit the system considering there's not a lot to get the rest of the Big Ten squirming.

10. Indiana
The class is heavy on ... Wide receivers. Terry Hoeppner's last recruiting class was heavy on the defensive side, and Bill Lynch's first full season focused on improving the passing game with five receiver prospects led by Shane Covington. This is a speedy crew designed to eventually stretch the field and get into more firefights. Three defensive tackles are coming in to add more bulk on the inside for 2010 and beyond.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... WR Shane Covington
The player you might care about this year ... RB Darius Wills
What it all means to the real world of college football ... IU will never have a brick wall of a defense, so it had to upgrade the weaponry. Adam Follett needs to eventually add a better passing option to the mix, but RBs Darius Willis, Cortez Smith and Alex Hunt should get early looks to boost the mediocre ground game.

11. Northwestern
The class is heavy on ... Offensive tackles. Guard Brian Mulroe might be the best offensive line prospect brought in, but the overall strength is at tackle with four good, ready-made players coming in. Of course they'll need time to get acclimated, but their ready size-wise. The receiving corps got four new players not including the star of the class, TE Quentin Williams.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... LB Brett Nagel
The player you might care about this year ... TE Quentin Williams
What it all means to the real world of college football ... After a strong first recruiting season, Pat Fitzgerald didn't do anything special this year outside of getting Williams, a potential centerpiece of the passing game. There weren't a lot of scholarships to go around, so there will be plenty of work to do next year, especially in the offensive backfield.