Recruiting 2009 Team Rankings
These guys might not look all that scary, but they're part of the nation's best recruiting class. Ohio State loaded up with a tremendous haul of talent to lead the 2009 CFN Recruiting Rankings. Check out where all 120 FBS teams are ranked in the aftermath of Signing Day.
2009 ... The Rankings
CFN's Ranking of the 2009 Classes
CFN Recruiting 2009
CFN 2009 Recruiting Rankings
No. 31 to 60 |
No. 61 to 90 |
No. 91 to 120
of how good recruiting classes are is hit or miss at best, a fruitless
exercise at worst. So how should a class be ranked? How many good
prospects did a program get? How many stars? How many needs were filled
and how did the program do to get the guys it was targeting? All that
matters is how the players who come in develop, handle the pressure of
college life, and perform on the field, no matter what they were ranked
coming out of high school. However, for now, on paper, here's how well
the teams seemed to do in the 2009 recruiting season.
The class is heavy on ... everything. Name the position and about
100 other teams would be ecstatic to do as well overall as Ohio State
did in any one area other than quarterback (and Kenneth Guiton isn’t a
bad prospect). Running back? Jaamal Berry and FB Carlos Hyde are the
stars of a good group. The receiving corps, led by Cris Carter’s son,
Duron, is special, the offensive tackles are all prototypes, the
defensive tackles big and quick, the linebackers fast, and the defensive
backs even faster. This class has it all.
The class is heavy on ... linemen. Nick Saban and his staff
brought in yet another loaded class that is among the best in the
country with RB Trent Richardson leading the way, but the bulk is up
front. From JUCO transfer James Carpenter, who might get a starting spot
on the offensive line right away, to Darrington Sentimore, Chris Bonds,
and Anthony Orr, who’ll load up the defensive front, the Tide secured
the lines for the next several years.
The class is heavy on ... defensive linemen. The Longhorns loaded
up with elite players all across the board with the bulk of the star
power coming on the defensive front. Alex Okafor will be a killer after
he spends a few years in the weight room, and Calvin Howell and Derek
Johnson will battle it out for the honor of being the next great
Longhorn defensive tackle. Kyle Kriegel is a potential pass rushing
terror, while Dominique Jones is a tweener who’ll see time on an All-Big
12 team before he’s through.
The class is heavy on ... the defensive front seven. Russell
Shepard has star potential in some way, shape or form either at
quarterback or receiver, and WR Rueben Randle and S Craig Loston will
make a ton of money someday, but the stars are on the lines with Chris
Davenport, Joshua Downs, and Sam Montgomery for the defensive front,
with JUCO transfer Akiem Hicks ready to come in right away and play,
while Chris Faulk and Stavion Lowe will be starting on the offensive
front sooner than later.
The class is heavy on ...
defense. Ever wonder why the
Trojans always have one of the toughest defenses in the country? This
class will give you a hint. USC continued its annual tradition of
loading up on some of the nation’s premier defenders, landing a top 10
player at each level on the field. S T.J. McDonald and DE Devon Kennard
look as if they could move into the lineup from Day 1 if there wasn’t so
much talent already ahead of them.
The class is heavy on ... cornerbacks. In a Pac-10 that’s usually
flush with quality passers, the Bruins wisely answered with a quartet of
really good cornerbacks. All four earned no less than three stars and
were ranked in the top 50 at the position. The best of the bunch is
Marlon Pollard, who fielded a slew of offers, and has an enormous upside
to match his leaping ability
The class is heavy on ...
response to losing Hakeem Nicks, Brandon Tate, and Brooks Foster to the
NFL was to sign a half-dozen receivers, headed by four-star stud
Jheranie Boyd. No returning wideout caught more than 11 passes a year
ago, meaning Boyd and his classmates will get every opportunity to play
right away in September. In fact, they’ll be counted on to do so.
The class is heavy on ... defensive backs. Everyone in the Big 12
went heavy on the secondary, seeing it as a must after the offensive
explosion of this year, but Oklahoma got the best ones of the bunch.
Gabe Lynn might be the nation’s best corner, and Marcus Trice isn’t all
that far behind. Javon Harris and Kevin Brent will be starting safeties
by 2011, while Demontre Hurst and Marshall Musil are interesting
9. South Carolina
The class is heavy on ... linebacker. The Gamecocks loaded up at
wide receiver with Alshon Jeffrey and Lamar Scruggs excellent prospects,
and the safeties are tremendous with Stephon Gilmore and Quin Smith
stars for the future. The stars are at linebacker with Devonte Holloman
and Damario Jeffery safety-sized defenders who could blow up after a
little bit of time in the weight room, while JUCO transfers Tony
Straughter and Josh Dickerson looking to see time early on.
The class is heavy on ... skill players. This isn’t a big class,
but it’s a class full of talent with a few top-shelf skill players
looking to be the next big thing now with Matthew Stafford and Knowshon
Moreno gone. Aaron Murray is the receiver to combine with A.J. Green to
potentially give the Dawgs the SEC’s best 1-2 receiving punch, while QBs
Aaron Murray and Zach Mettenberger should wage an interesting battle for
the starting spot in the near future. Only one running back, Washaun
Ealey, signed on, but he’s a good one.
11. Penn State
The class is heavy on ... receivers. The strength of the class is
at offensive tackle, but the immediate need was at receiver with Derrick
Williams, Deon Butler and Jordan Norwood gone. Joe Paterno and his staff
aren’t going to ask the incoming freshmen to step in and start right
away, but it would be nice if Justin Brown, Shawney Kersey, Brandon
Felder, Devon Smith and Christian Kuntz were able to push for potential
playing time. Brown is the star of the bunch, but Kersey and Smith are
the speedsters who could make a more immediate impact.
12. Ole Miss
The class is heavy on ... skill players. This is a huge class
with a little something for all the spots, but Houston Nutt and his
staff mostly tried to get players to get the offense moving even more.
Quarterback Raymond Cotton will get time to develop with Jevon Snead
already under center, while running backs Darius Barksdale and Rodney
Scott are just a few of the good prospects looking to shine in the Nutt
system. Pat Patterson is a special receiver prospect, while Ja-Mes Logan
and Montez Phillips have size and speed.
The class is heavy on ... quality over quantity. While there were
a few misfires with the Gators not getting everyone they were hoping
for, especially after the national title season, the stars they did get
were top-shelf. Xavier Nixon might be the nation’s best offensive tackle
prospect, Jelani Jenkins is arguably the top linebacker, Gary Brown is
among the best defensive tackles, Nick Alajajian and Jonotthan Harrison
are among the best guards, and Andre Debose is a top receiver. There
aren’t a lot of prospects for each spot, so if the stars bust, there
isn’t a lot to fall back on.
14. Texas A&M
The class is heavy on ... defensive backs. Eight players were
brought in to help out the secondary, and head coach Mike Sherman got a
slew of really good ones. JUCO transfer Coryell Judie might be penciled
into a starting corner spot right away, while four safeties, Steven
Campbell, Malcolm Johnson, Colton Valencia and Charlie Thomas are all
good enough to challenge for playing time from the moment they set foot
The class is heavy on ... QB Tate Forcier. Last year, head coach
Rich Rodriguez put all his eggs in the Terrelle Pryor basket, and the
plan backfired. The quarterback situation last year was a liability at
best, an utter disaster at worst, and something had to be done. Now it’s
all about Forcier, a small, quick athlete from San Diego who fits the
mold of the type of quarterback needed to take the program out of the
doldrums. He might be asked to start from day one.
16. Florida State
The class is heavy on ... safeties. With their secondary going
through a bit of an overhaul, the Seminoles focused on that unit,
specifically the safeties. Florida State has signed four of them, two
who rank among the ten best in the country at the position. Willie Downs
and JaJuan Harley are outstanding talents, whose families won’t be
traveling far on Saturdays. Both teens hail from Tallahassee, and
decided some time ago to remain close to home.
17. Notre Dame
The class is heavy on ... talent. There isn’t any one need here
that needed a desperate filling, so Notre Dame went national and brought
in some superior talents. Manti Te’o is widely considered to be the
nation’s best linebacker prospect, Chris Watt might be the nation’s best
offensive tackle, and guar Alex Bullard, RB Cierre Wood, and LB Carlos
Calabrese are among the best at their respective positions.
The class is heavy on ...
defensive backs. Never at a
shortage for quality defensive backs, Randy Shannon is making sure it
stays that way with this class. All four of this year’s additions are
ranked no lower than No. 40 nationally at their position. S Ray Ray
Armstrong is a 6-3, 210-pound beast in the mold of former ‘Cane Sean
Taylor. Corners Brandon McGee and Jamal Reid are a couple of top 10
talents, who were hotly pursued by schools in the ACC and SEC.
The class is heavy on ... receivers. After the problems on
offense over the last few years, Gene Chizik and his staff went hard
after players who can put points on the board. Offensive coordinator Gus
Malzahn needs bodies, and he got them with QB Tyrik Rollison a player
for the future, Onterio McCalebb a nice running back prospect, and a
whole slew of receivers to finally get the passing game going. Travante
Stallworth and Emory Blake are the best of a good lot, while tight end
Philip Lutzenkirchen could be a centerpiece of the passing game in a few
The class is heavy on ... defensive backs. The defensive line got
a big boost with Jonathan Hollins and Rae Sykes likely to provide
immediate help on the end, and the linebackers are strong with Jerod
Askew with all the skills to be special. The secondary got the most help
with six defensive backs, and they’re all fantastic. Safety Darren Myles
might be the best prospect of the group, while Nyshier Oliver and
corners Janzen Jackson, Mike Edwards, Eric Gordon and Marsalis Teague
all have the potential to be stars.
The class is heavy on ... pass-catchers. If the Cardinal is going
to continue this forward push that started when Jim Harbaugh was hired,
it needs to improve offensively. Like, now. This class provides some
exciting weapons for whenever QB Andrew Luck takes over the offense.
Stanford bagged a pair of four-star wideouts, Jamal Patterson and Jemari
Roberts, to go along with easily the best collection of tight ends in
the country. Both Zach Ertz and Levine Toilolo are massive targets, who
could have gone just about anywhere.
22. Mississippi State
The class is heavy on ... receivers. What do you get a team
that’s been among the worst in America in passing over the last few
years? Targets. Tyler Russell was a must-get quarterback for new head
coach Dan Mullen to develop over the next year or two, and he needs guys
to throw to. Seven receiver prospects were brought in with JUCO
transfers Maurice Langston and Leon Berry looking to add help right
away. Chad Bumphis is the best prospect of the lot.
The class is heavy on ...
defensive backs. The
defensive line got a ton of bodies, but few of them were standout
prospects. The offense got more players to fit the Bobby Petrino style
with the line getting the biggest boost. However, the coaching staff
mostly loaded up in the secondary with six nice prospects led by corner
Darius Winston and JUCO transfers Anthony Leon, Rudell Crim and Andru
24. West Virginia
The class is heavy on ... Skill position players. The
Mountaineers have roped in a slew of speedy, dynamic backs and
receivers, who can go a long with the ball. What else is new? This
class, which is particularly heavy on outstanding wideouts, is
tailored-made for an offense that hopes to throw the ball more than in
the past. Logan Heastie was fielding interest from the likes of Florida
and USC, so he might waste little time getting on the field.
The class is 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
The class is heavy on ... backs. How do you answer the departure
of star LeSean McCoy to the NFL after his sophomore season? You sign
four young backs, who’ll be in a position to contribute in a year or
two. There’s a nice blend of skills in the group. Dion Lewis and Jason
Douglas provide the dash. At 205 pounds, Kevin Adams will bring the
punch if he doesn’t move to safety. Raymond Graham, who was also pursued
by Rutgers and Maryland, has a chance to be the best of the group.
The class is 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.
The class is heavy on ... linebackers. Maryland continues to
stockpile the type of versatile linebackers that eventually move on to
play on Sundays. Seven, in fact, are packing their bags for College
Park, even though there’s no urgency for any to play right away. From
New Jersey to South Carolina, Ralph Friedgen swept down the Eastern
seaboard searching for athletic defenders who can play with range. It’s
obviously early in the process, but Lorne Goree appears to be the best
of a deep bunch.
The class is heavy on ... special teams. The Ducks made an
investment in their future on special teams with the signings of P
Jackson Rice and PK Mike Bowlin. Both were ranked in the top 3 at their
respective positions, and will have an opportunity to become the
cornerstones of the unit now that P Josh Syria and PK Matt Evensen are
gone. Rice and Bowlin won’t get the attention of, say, a Cliff Harris or
Boseko Lokombo, but that doesn’t they won’t play an integral role down
30. Texas Tech
The class is heavy on ... defensive backs. Tech can’t beat Texas
or Oklahoma without being able to slow down the pass, and it made sure
the defense got plenty of attention to try to upgrade the secondary. D.J.
Johnson and Yahshua Williams are very big corners who’ll get time to
develop. Adding more size are safeties Will Ford and Terrence Bullitt,
while Daniel Cobb will be in the starting mix in a few years.
CFN 2009 Recruiting Rankings
No. 31 to 60 |
No. 61 to 90 |
No. 91 to 120