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Ohio State leaving Big Ten in dust in recruiting rankings

Ohio State Introduces Urban Meyer Getty Images

The SEC may be dominant at the top fo the Rivals team rankings a little more than midway through National Signing Day, but the Ohio State Buckeyes are once again in the mix among the top recruiting classes in the nation. Ohio State is also leaving many of their Big Ten rivals in the dust when comparing recruiting profiles so far.

The updated team rankings compiled by Rivals currently sees Ohio State ranked third overall, trailing Alabama and LSU and sitting just ahead of defending BCS champion Florida State and an impressive Tennessee class. The Buckeyes have 23 players in their Class of 2014, including 15 four-star recruits and one five-star player. That is some serious quality depth being added to the roster in Columbus by Urban Meyer and his staff. You have to move all the way down to No. 21 to find the next Big Ten team in the Rivals team rankings and only two other Big Ten schools are ranked in the top 25 according to Rivals.

The 2013 Big Ten champions from Michigan State are ranked 21st overall. The Spartans lost a commitment to Ohio State today when defensive end Darius Slade out of New Jersey made a last-minute decision to sign with Ohio State. That took some of the steam out of the recruiting victory for in-state talent Malik McDowell, but the Spartans continue to develop tough players that sometimes fly under the radar.

Penn State is putting together a solid class despite missing some scholarships as well. The Nittany Lions are currently ranked No. 23 by Rivals after completing their day’s action. Penn State head coach James Franklin and his staff did a solid job in a short period of time by adding six four-star players to add depth wherever possible. Franklin has said many players should expect to be available to play right away this season due to limited roster options under NCAA sanctions.

What should be concerning for the big Ten is the fact Penn State was able to pull together just the third top 25 class with NCAA sanctions while programs such as Michigan (No. 31), Nebraska (No. 32) and Wisconsin (No. 33) are lagging behind. If the Big Ten is going to compete with the likes of the SEC and Pac 12, these are all programs that will have to put together some more respected classes in the future.

Of course, Ohio State has dominated in recruiting since Urban Meyer arrived as head coach two years ago and last year the Buckeyes failed to win the Big Ten. Recruiting victories are nice, but Michigan State will tell you what victories really matter. Big Ten Team Rankings

No. 3 Ohio State
No. 21 Michigan State
No. 23 Penn State
No. 31 Michiagn
No. 32 Nebraska
No. 33 Wisconsin
No. 36 Indiana
No. 52 Minnesota
No. 53 Maryland
No. 57 Rutgers
No. 60 Iowa
No. 65 Northwestern
No. 71 Illinois
No. 74 Purdue

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27 Responses to “Ohio State leaving Big Ten in dust in recruiting rankings”
  1. polegojim says: Feb 5, 2014 3:19 PM

    Congrats… but in the grand scheme of things, will there be much differential to show for it???

  2. cometkazie says: Feb 5, 2014 3:42 PM

    Maybe there is a lesson here . . .

  3. cfballfan1 says: Feb 5, 2014 4:20 PM

    This is to be expected from a head coach at O$u who will say or do almost anything to land his recruiting targets. Too bad you can’t buy B1G Championships Urby.

  4. cfballfan1 says: Feb 5, 2014 4:20 PM

    This is to be expected from a head coach at O$u who will say or do almost anything to land his recruiting targets. Too bad you can’t buy B1G Championships Urby.

  5. hehateme1 says: Feb 5, 2014 4:31 PM

    I’ve gotta go take an Urban. I’ll be back later to write more once I relieve myself.

  6. hehateme1 says: Feb 5, 2014 4:32 PM

    I’ve gotta go take an Urban. I’ll be back to write more after I relieve myself.

  7. derekgorgonstar says: Feb 5, 2014 4:43 PM

    Well…..until they start getting arrested.

  8. thraiderskin says: Feb 5, 2014 4:49 PM

    It would be nice if the scrubs in this conference would pick their game up.

  9. snipedanglecelly13 says: Feb 5, 2014 4:52 PM

    Go blue!

  10. normtide says: Feb 5, 2014 4:56 PM

    So, the standard response to success today is to claim cheating? That’s sad. It couldn’t be because they work harder and perhaps more talented? I’m my experience, success comes to those who want it and work for it more than their opponents. Excuses are for losers.

    Myself and everyone else outside the b1g saw this coming years ago. There is little surprise. MSU and maybe PSU are the only b1g programs with the coaches to even give OSU a fight. You can’t hire your HC from Utah State and expect to run with OSU. Nor can you allow mediocre coaches to stay employed. Michigan and Nebraska SHOULD be right with them, but they need to go and pay for the best coach they can get, asap. Until then, it’s OSU’s world.

    I’m not even close to liking OSU, in fact I would love to see a team step up to them. As of now, OSU almost has an auto bid into the playoff.

  11. midtec2005 says: Feb 5, 2014 5:27 PM

    I’m an OSU fan so I am really pleased with the ranking.

    However, I think this might be the most over-hyped overblown thing in sports history. If I remember correctly (to be fair, maybe I don’t) Jim Tressel never recruited particularly high ranked classes, yet tOSU was still great every year.

    Rankings are fine, but having good coaching is more important.

  12. anchordown873 says: Feb 5, 2014 5:29 PM


    “You can’t hire your HC from Utah State and expect to run with OSU.”

    What about it your hire a coach that coached at Utah?

  13. wingsdjy says: Feb 5, 2014 5:34 PM

    Unless Rivals normalizes the recruiting classes, this is pointless. Of course universities signing more recruits will be higher on the list.

    ESPN shows NW much higher up, but because they only have 16 signings, Rivals ranks them low.

  14. onbucky96 says: Feb 5, 2014 5:47 PM

    Oh No! Wisconsin is ranked 23! What will we do? Oh yeah, play like a top 15 program, just like every year. Really, is there a more over hyped day than signing day? Didn’t think so, ON WISCONSIN!

  15. normtide says: Feb 5, 2014 6:16 PM

    Anchordown- the coach from Utah State didn’t have the record Meyer did at Utah. And no one compares the two. True though, you do find gems in the rough sometimes. I stand by my point though. That’s why psu hired Franklin, a proven commodity. On Feb 5, 2014 4:29 PM, “CollegeFootballTalk” wrote:

    > anchordown873 commented: “@normtide “You can’t hire your HC from Utah > State and expect to run with OSU.” What about it your hire a coach that > coached at Utah?”

  16. dmvtransplant says: Feb 5, 2014 6:16 PM

    Rankings don’t mean Jack. MSU never gets big names, but they just happen to be the Rose Bowl Champs for a reason it’s called coaching.

    Don’t believe look at Kansas State over the last 4-5 yrs compared to Texas. Then tell me which school had a better run the last 3 years? Coaching matters more than rankings do, any Oklahoma fan still smiling from the Sugar Bowl win can tell you that.

  17. normtide says: Feb 5, 2014 6:19 PM

    Alabama wins 3 titles in four years. Recruiting rankings do matter. One loss does not disprove that.

  18. Deb says: Feb 5, 2014 6:25 PM

    Recruiting is everything, and Urban is good at it. I’m not surprised he’s ahead of the pack. But I’m a little surprised they’re not at least trying to compete with him.

  19. dmvtransplant says: Feb 5, 2014 9:12 PM

    Rankings don’t matter if you get out coached by someone that game plans better. The last two games of MSU & OSU seasons really proved that.

    And despite what some Bama fans might think
    Saban’s been out coached before is my only point. I’m not trying to start an argument the prove is it’s happened more than once before and to act like he’s only lost one game in his whole career coaching just sounds crazy.

  20. normtide says: Feb 5, 2014 9:44 PM

    Saban has been out coached, and will again. No one is perfect. One loss or even two don’t change what he has accomplished. No way I would trade the titles to win that one game. Also, next year, Bama will be a contender again.

    Btw, Saban admitted as much. We prepared for the triple option. Oklahoma came out passing and Knight looked like Joe Montana. But don’t act like that loss invalidates the program.

    The easiest way to win is to have better players. That won’t change. It also doesn’t guarantee anything.

  21. polegojim says: Feb 6, 2014 11:06 AM

    Agreed Norm… both sides – coaching/player skill must be in place to achieve conf and national success. That’s why it is so remarkable when a coach and team contend perennially.

    If Sabans worse years are ‘almost’ contending for the Nat Title game… I suppose that will do. ; )

    Recruits like winners and he’s a proven winner, same with Meyer and Myers.

    As Deb said – other than MSU, no one else in the B1G has done much to impress the top young football players in the nation.

    I like Hoke, but even at the hire was skeptical… and remain unconvinced he’s ‘the guy’. I believe 2014-15 season is a make or break year for him… as it should be. So far, his effect has been underwhelming, with a few ‘moral’ victories at most. The team has performed worse, year by year, since the team he inherited from RR. He may be 26-13 wearing Maize and Blue… but has failed consistently when it matters most.

    My Wolverines struggled on both sides last year… we’ve not had a true national talent at QB since before Robinson… the D was a debacle under RR regime and somewhat improved under Mattison. Offense was atrocious against ‘true’ national competition like MSU (admittedly OSU did not have a D last year) with the inflexibility of Borges.
    I believe Nuss will help them use what they have instead of running what he knows no matter what.

  22. dkhhuey says: Feb 6, 2014 1:14 PM

    GREAT recruiting class haul for the Buckeyes – they brought in athletes to shore up the positions that had deficiencies. I was hoping the others in the B1G would step up their game but apparently not so much!

    LSU and Bama brought in a bunch of group of monster recruits as well! As with every year, it will come down to strength, conditioning, game plan, and coaching… I like having Urban at the helm!

  23. normtide says: Feb 6, 2014 1:47 PM

    I know OSU fans can’t and won’t believe it, but MSU stepping up to challenge them it’s a great thing. There is a reason they were ranked as the 4th best undefeated team. Not because of the actual OSU team, but because of the perception of the b1g. You need competition. Not just got SOS, but to push your team to be better.

    Polejim- Michigan is an elite program. But, even the elites can only fall so far before the climb back becomes daunting. Look at Tennessee. I never thought they would be down this long. A couple wrong HC hires did it to them. UM will be back, but they longer you wait to make your move, the harder it gets. Like I said before, the rest of the country wants more competition for OSU. Best of luck my friend.

  24. dkhhuey says: Feb 6, 2014 3:24 PM

    Norm – I surely hope MSU can sustain what it has built under Coach D! Strong competition is always welcome because it helps keep OSU sharp both physically and mentally!

  25. polegojim says: Feb 6, 2014 4:55 PM

    … yes DK… And assures OSU of at least one L!!!

  26. dkhhuey says: Feb 7, 2014 2:26 PM

    @pole – HA! Welcome back to the Shoe and Urban will tell Hoke to spin the wheel raggedy man!!!

  27. 10kmp says: Feb 10, 2014 8:40 AM


    “If I remember correctly (to be fair, maybe I don’t) Jim Tressel never recruited particularly high ranked classes”

    Yeah, you aren’t remembering correctly. Tressel recruited at a very high level.

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