Alabama may have suffered a lopsided loss in the College Football Playoff championship game, but that hasn’t stopped them from continuing to get the best high school football players in the country to commit to Tuscaloosa.
The Crimson Tide had the consensus top recruiting class in the country for 2019, with virtually every ranking putting Alabama at the top.
Crimson Tide Keeps Rolling
That’s nothing new for Alabama, which has typically brought in the most talent each year for the last decade. According to rankings done by 247Sports, the Crimson Tide have now had the top ranked recruiting class in eight of the past nine years.
Others also agreed that the Crimson Tide had done the best job of reloading their team, with ESPN also putting Alabama at the top of their rankings.
That designation came both because of the quality and quantity of players that will be making up the Alabama freshman class this fall. The team got 27 commitments in total, led by an outstanding crop of offensive linemen including Evan Neal and Pierce Quick, the No. 2 and No. 4 offensive tackles in the nation according to ESPN.
In total, 247Sports gave Alabama credit for signing three five-star prospects and 23 four-star recruits, by far the deepest class of elite players in the country.
Georgia Challenges Alabama for Top Spot
But not everyone ranked the Crimson Tide at the top of the pack. Rivals.com put Alabama all the way down at No. 2, giving the slightest of edges to SEC rival Georgia. The Bulldogs got plenty of respect from other observers as well, finishing in the second spot in both the 247 and ESPN rankings.
Georgia signed five-star defensive end Nolan Smith, and picked up another five-star recruit in Clay Webb, who ESPN rated as the top center available this year. According to 247 Sports, Georgia led the nation in five-star recruits with five such players.
Fans in the Lone Star State will also be happy after Signing Day, as both Texas and Texas A&M ranked highly according to analysts. The Longhorns were No. 3 in the 247 Sports rankings, while the Aggies took that honor according to ESPN, with both schools landing a top-six class according to every major recruiting service.
Texas fans can look forward to explosive plays out of two of the top athletes from this class in Bru McCoy and Jordan Whittington, while the Aggies got a commitment from Kenyon Green, a five-star recruit who ESPN ranked as the top offensive tackle in the class.
Other schools that appeared to add talent and depth included LSU (No. 3 according to Rivals.com), Oklahoma (No. 5), and Oregon (No. 7). As usual, the SEC was a dominant recruiting force, with Florida, Tennessee, Auburn and Arkansas all landing top 20 classes. Defending champion Clemson also continued to recruit well, landing a top 10 class according to most observers.
While some freshman may make an immediate impact even at major programs, Signing Day didn’t have a huge impact on next year’s championship odds. According to Ladbrokes, Clemson is the 7/4 favorite to repeat as national champions, just ahead of Alabama (2/1) and in front of other top contenders like Georgia (6/1) and Ohio State (11/1).