Big Ten Recruiting Rankings 2-5-12

Submitted by Ace on February 5th, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Barring a late-breaking commitment—say, Alex Kozan—these are your final Big Ten recruiting rankings for the class of 2012. After Ohio State's late charge under Urban Meyer, the Buckeyes finish atop the rankings; Michigan is a relatively close second and from there it's a precipitous drop to Notre Dame and the rest of the Big Ten. You can find the previous edition of the rankings here—changes are not listed because there were far too many.

Chart? Chart:

Big Ten+ Recruiting Class Rankings
Rank School # Commits Rivals Avg Scout Avg ESPN Avg 24/7 Avg Avg Avg^
1 Ohio State 25 3.68 3.76 3.48 3.68 3.65
2 Michigan 25 3.56 3.64 3.36 3.56 3.53
3 Notre Dame 16 3.50 3.69 3.50 3.56 3.56
4 Michigan State 18 3.11 3.17 3.11 3.11 3.13
5 Nebraska 17 3.35 2.94 2.88* 3.29 3.12
6 Purdue 26 2.92 2.62 2.78* 2.88 2.80
7 Iowa 24 2.92 2.71 2.63* 2.92 2.75
8 Penn State 19 2.79 2.95 2.58 3.11 2.86
9 Northwestern 20 2.90 2.85 2.60 2.85 2.80
10 Wisconsin 12 3.08 3.08 2.92 3.25 3.08
11 Indiana 25 2.72 2.52 2.39* 2.60 2.56
12 Minnesota 27 2.70 2.37 2.12* 2.63 2.46
13 Illinois 19 2.74 2.63 2.16 2.63 2.54

*ESPN doesn't rate JuCos, so they are counted as unranked recruits for the sake of consistency (trust me, it makes sense when you look at the spreadsheet).
^The average of the average rankings of the four recruiting services (aka the previous four columns). The figure is calculated based on the raw numbers and then rounded, so the numbers above may not average out exactly.

On to the full data, after the jump.

 

#1 Ohio State - 25 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Noah Spence DE PA 5 5 5 5
Adolphus Washington DE OH 5 5 4 5
Bri'onte Dunn RB OH 4 5 4 4
Tommy Schutt DT IL 4 5 4 4
Joshua Perry LB OH 4 4 4 4
David Perkins LB IN 4 4 4 4
Se'Von Pittman DE OH 4 4 4 4
Armani Reeves CB MA 4 4 4 4
Warren Ball RB OH 4 4 3 4
De'Van Bogard S OH 4 4 3 4
Taylor Decker OL OH 4 4 3 4
Kyle Dodson OL OH 4 4 3 4
Camren Williams LB MA 4 4 3 4
Michael Thomas WR VA 4 4 3 3
Joey O'Connor OL CO 4 3 4 3
Najee Murray CB OH 3 4 3 3
Jamal Marcus LB NC 3 3 4 4
Pat Elflein OL OH 3 3 4 3
Ricquan Southward WR FL 3 3 4 3
Jacoby Boren OL OH 3 3 3 3
Cardale Jones QB OH 3 3 3 4
Frank Epitropoulos WR OH 3 3 3 3
Blake Thomas TE OH 3 3 3 3
Luke Roberts LB OH 3 3 3 3
Tyvis Powell S OH 3 3 2 3

The Buckeyes round out their class with Armani Reeves, former Wisconsin commit Kyle Dodson, and Jamal Marcus.

#2 Michigan - 25 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Kyle Kalis OL OH 5 5 4 4
Ondre Pipkins DT MO 5 4 4 4
Royce Jenkins-Stone LB MI 4 4 4 4
James Ross LB MI 4 4 4 4
Joe Bolden LB OH 4 4 4 4
Terry Richardson CB MI 4 4 4 4
Erik Magnuson OL CA 4 4 4 4
Jarrod Wilson S OH 4 4 4 4
Amara Darboh WR IA 4 4 3 4
Dennis Norfleet RB MI 4 4 3 4
Tom Strobel DE OH 4 4 3 4
Blake Bars OL TN 4 3 3 3
Devin Funchess TE MI 3 4 4 4
Chris Wormley DE OH 3 4 4 4
Mario Ojemudia DE MI 3 4 4 3
A.J. Williams TE OH 3 4 3 3
Matt Godin DE MI 3 3 3 4
Kaleb Ringer LB OH 3 3 3 3
Ben Braden OL MI 3 3 3 3
Jehu Chesson WR MO 3 3 3 3
Jeremy Clark S KY 3 3 3 3
Allen Gant S OH 3 3 3 3
Willie Henry DT OH 3 3 3 3
Sione Houma FB UT 3 3 2 3
Drake Johnson RB MI 3 3 2 3

The Wolverines strengthen their class with a couple of surprise pickups in Willie Henry and Dennis Norfleet.

#3 Notre Dame - 16 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Gunner Kiel QB IN 5 5 4 5
Jarron Jones DT NY 4 4 4 5
Tee Shepard CB CA 4 5 4 4
Sheldon Day DT IN 4 5 4 4
Elijah Shumate S NJ 4 4 4 4
Ronnie Stanley OL NV 4 4 4 4
William Mahone RB OH 4 4 4 3
KeiVarae Russell RB WA 4 4 3 4
Nick Baratti S TX 3 3 3 3
C.J. Prosise S VA 3 4 3 3
Justin Ferguson WR FL 3 3 4 3
Mark Harrell OL NC 3 3 4 3
Romeo Okwara DE NC 3 3 3 4
Chris Brown WR SC 3 3 3 3
John Turner S IN 3 3 3 3
Scott Daly LS IL 2 2 2 2

The Irish lose blue-chip receiver Deontay Greenberry to... Houston? Yikes. They don't add anyone in the final stages of the recruiting cycle, either. Take note, whining Michigan fans.

#4 Michigan State - 18 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Aaron Burbridge WR MI 4 4 4 4
Demetrius Cox S PA 4 4 4 4
Jamal Lyles LB MI 4 4 3 3
Monty Madaris WR OH 3 4 4 4
Benny McGowan OL OH 3 3 4 3
Tyler O'Connor QB OH 3 3 3 4
Riley Bullough LB MI 3 3 3 3
Zach Higgins OL OH 3 3 3 3
Josiah Price TE IN 3 3 3 3
Nick Tompkins RB GA 3 3 3 3
Kyle Kerrick WR PA 3 3 3 3
MacGarrett Kings WR FL 3 3 3 3
Jermaine Edmondson S OH 3 3 3 2
Kodi Kieler OL MI 3 3 3 3
Mark Meyers S OH 3 3 3 2
Evan Jones TE OH 3 3 NR 3
Ezra Robinson CB FL 3 3 3 3
David Fennell DT OR 2 2 3 3

The Spartans add Demetrius Cox, Monty Madaris, Mark Meyers, and David Fennell; they jump from #6 to #4 in the final standings.

#5 Nebraska - 17 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Paul Thurston OL CO 4 4 4 4
Greg McMullen DE OH 4 3 3 4
Jordan Westerkamp WR IL 4 4 3 4
Alonzo Moore WR LA 4 3 3 3
Mohammed Seisay CB AZ 4 3 JC 4
Zaire Anderson LB CA 4 2 JC 3
Michael Rose LB MO 3 3 4 4
Tommy Armstrong QB TX 3 4 3 3
Jared Afalava LB UT 3 3 4 4
Imani Cross RB MO 3 3 4 3
Thomas Brown LB CA 3 3 3 3
Aaron Curry DT TX 3 3 3 3
Vincent Valentine DT IL 3 3 3 3
Avery Moss DE AZ 3 3 2 3
Sam Cotton TE NE 3 2 3 3
Corey Whitaker OL CA 3 2 NR 3
LeRoy Alexander S OH 3 2 NR 2

The Cornhuskers add five recruits late in Alonzo Moore, Imani Cross, Aaron Curry, Vincent Valentine, and Corey Whitaker; they move up from #8 to #5 thanks to the late influx of commits.

#6 Purdue - 26 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Ryan Watson DE MD 4 4 3 4
Jordan Shine S IN 3 3 3 3
Ryan Morris TE NJ 3 3 3 3
Austin Appleby QB OH 3 3 3 3
Jordan Roos OL TX 3 3 3 3
Bilal Marshall QB FL 3 3 3 3
Kingsley Ike DE TX 3 3 3 3
Robert Gregory QB IL 3 3 3 3
Jonathan Curry TE AL 3 3 3 3
Paul Griggs K NC 3 3 3 3
Aloyis Gray ATH IN 3 3 2 3
Andy Garcia LB FL 3 2 2 2
Cameron Cermin OL TX 3 2 3 3
Joey Warburg OL KY 3 2 3 3
B.J. Knauf WR FL 3 3 2 3
Jimmy Herman S IN 3 3 2 3
Devin Smith OL AZ 3 3 JC 3
Carlos Carvajal TE NY 3 3 3 3
Anthony Brown CB FL 3 2 2 3
Danny Anthrop WR IN 3 2 2 2
Greg Latta DE CA 3 2 JC 2
Cameron Posey WR FL 3 2 2 3
James Prince OL TX 3 2 2 2
Jordan Woods WR MI 2 3 2 3
Thomas Meadows K VA 2 2 2 2
Jason King OL AK 2 2 3 3

The Boilermakers lose CB Dion Witty but finish out their class by adding Robert Gregory and Joey Warburg. Purdue finishes with the surprise class in the conference and jump from #9 to #6 in the standings. They could potentially be as high as #4, depending on how much you value class size.

#7 Iowa - 24 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Faith Ekakitie DE IL 4 4 4 4
Greg Garmon RB PA 4 4 4 4
Jaleel Johnson DT IL 4 4 4 4
Ryan Ward OL IL 4 3 4 3
Maurice Fleming CB IL 3 3 4 3
Sean Draper CB OH 3 3 3 3
Ruben Lile ATH MI 3 3 3 3
Cameron Wilson WR OH 3 3 3 3
Anthony Morgan S TX 3 3 3 3
Mitch Keppy OL IL 3 3 2 3
Michael Malloy RB IA 3 3 2 3
C.J. Beathard QB TN 3 2 3 3
Drew Ott DE NE 3 2 3 3
Daumantas Venckus DE FL 3 2 3 2
Barkley Hill RB IA 3 2 2 3
Greg Mabin WR FL 3 2 2 3
Eric Simmons OL IA 3 2 JC NR
George Kittle WR OK 3 NR 2 2
Laron Taylor LB MI 2 3 3 3
Kevin Buford CB MI 2 3 3 3
Connor Kornbrath K WV 2 3 2 2
Tevaun Smith WR CT 2 3 JC NR
Nate Meier LB IA 2 2 NR 2
Reid Sealby OL OK 2 2 NR 2

The Hawkeyes add six players down the stretch: Sean Draper, C.J. Beathard, Barkley Hill, George Kittle, Nate Meier, and Reid Sealby. They hold steady at #7 in the final standings.

#8 Penn State - 19 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Eugene Lewis WR PA 4 4 4 4
Jamil Pollard DT NJ 4 3 3 4
Brent Wilkerson DE MD 3 3 3 4
Brian Gaia OL MD 3 3 4 3
Jordan Lucas S MA 3 3 3 3
Anthony Stanko OL OH 3 3 3 3
Nyeem Wartman LB PA 3 3 3 3
Jesse James TE PA 3 3 3 3
Austin Johnson OL NJ 3 3 NR 3
Malik Golden ATH PA 3 3 3 3
Trevor Williams WR MD 3 3 2 3
Steven Bench QB GA 3 2 3 3
Jake Kiley CB NH 2 3 2 2
Da'Quan Davis CB MD 2 3 3 3
Derek Dowrey DT VA 2 3 3 3
Jake Kiley CB NH 2 3 2 2
Wendy Laurent DT NJ 2 3 NR 3
Evan Schwan DT PA 2 3 NR 3
Jonathan Warner WR WA 2 2 NR 2

The Nittany Lions stumble to the finish line, losing Armani Reeves and Skyler Mornhinweg while filling out their class with mostly two-stars. Trevor Williams, Steven Bench, Da'Quan Davis, Jake Kiley, Wendy Laurent, Evan Schwan, and Jonathan Warner are the late additions. PSU falls from #5 down to #8 in the rankings.

#9 Northwestern - 20 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Ifeadi Odenigbo DE OH 4 4 4 4
Greg Kuhar DT OH 4 3 3 3
Adam DePietro OL PA 3 4 3 3
Dean Lowry DE IL 3 3 3 3
Kenton Playko OL OH 3 3 3 3
Eric Olson OL MA 3 3 3 3
Jack Schwaba TE PA 3 3 3 2
Ian Park OL PA 3 3 3 3
Eric Wilson WR MI 3 3 3 3
Malin Jones RB IL 3 3 2 3
Traveon Henry RB FL 3 3 2 3
Terrance Brown S CA 3 2 2 3
Mike McHugh WR PA 3 2 2 2
Dwight White CB TX 3 2 2 2
Connor Mahoney OL PA 2 3 3 2
Dan Vitale S IL 2 2 2 2
Joseph Jones S PA 2 2 2 3
Chris Fitzpatrick OL KY 2 2 2 2
Jaylen Prater LB OH 2 2 2 3
Andrew Scanlan WR PA NR NR 2 NR

No change for the Wildcats, though they move up one spot in the final rankings due to having a much larger class than the next team on the list...

#10 Wisconsin - 12 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Dan Voltz OL IL 4 4 4 4
Vince Biegel LB WI 4 4 4 4
J.J. Denman OL PA 4 4 4 4
Vonte Jackson RB WI 4 4 3 4
Bart Houston QB CA 3 4 4 4
D.J. Singleton S NJ 3 4 4 3
Jake Meador OL IN 3 3 3 3
Walker Williams OL WA 3 3 3 3
Arthur Goldberg DT PA 3 3 2 3
Hugs Etienne CB CA 3 2 3 3
Reggie Love WR FL 3 2 2 3
Reggie Mitchell CB PA 2 2 2 3

The Badgers lose Kyle Dodson to Ohio State and fill his spot with three-star OL Jake Meador. Due to having just 12 players in their final class, I can't justify ranking the Badgers any higher than #10—they plummet from their previous #4 ranking after failing to add any depth to the class.

#11 Indiana - 23 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Nathan Sudfield QB CA 3 3 4 3
Nick Mangieri DE IL 3 3 3 3
Dan Feeney OL IL 3 3 3 3
Jordan Wallace LB IN 3 3 3 3
Kevin Davis WR IN 3 3 3 3
Adam Kranda TE IN 3 3 3 3
Wes Rogers OL IN 3 3 3 3
Shawn Heffern DE IN 3 3 3 3
Jason Spriggs TE IN 3 3 3 3
Tevin Coleman RB IL 3 3 3 3
Jacarri Alexander LB IA 3 3 JC 2
Cameron Coffman QB AZ 3 2 JC 3
David Cooper LB KS 3 2 JC 3
Dimitric Camiel OL TX 3 2 NR 2
Antonio Marshall CB GA 3 NR JC 2
Ryan Thompson S MS 3 2 JC NR
Caleb Cornett WR IN 3 3 2 2
Ralphael Green OL TX 3 2 2 NR
Tanner Kearns TE OH 2 3 2 3
Alex Todd OL OH 2 3 2 3
Jacob Bailey OL IN 2 2 3 3
Ricky Jones WR FL 2 2 3 2
Dawson Fletcher S OH 2 2 2 2
Tregg Waters S AZ 2 2 JC 2
Justin Rayside DE CA 2 2 JC NR

The Hoosiers stick at #11 after picking up Nathan Sudfield, Dimitric Camiel, and Ricky Jones.

#12 Minnesota - 27 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Jonah Pirsig OL MN 3 4 3 4
Isaac Hayes OL MN 3 3 4 3
Jamel Harbison WR NC 3 3 4 3
Andre McDonald WR MN 3 3 4 3
Philip Nelson QB MN 3 3 2 3
Jack Lynn LB IL 3 3 2 3
Jordan Hinojosa DT FL 3 2 2 3
Martez Shabazz CB TX 3 2 JC 3
Nick Rallis S MN 3 3 2 3
Maxx Williams TE MN 3 3 NR 3
Rodrick Williams RB TX 3 2 2 3
James Gillum RB MS 3 2 JC 3
K.J. Maye QB AL 3 2 3 2
Roland Johnson DT KS 3 2 JC 3
Duke Anyanwu WR MN 3 2 1 2
Antonio Johnson S OH 3 2 2 3
Damarius Travis S FL 3 2 NR 2
Lincoln Plsek DE TX 3 2 3 2
Briean Boddy CB KS 3 2 JC 2
Mitch Leidner QB MN 2 3 2 3
Yoshoub Timms DT FL 2 2 3 2
Eric Murray CB WI 2 2 NR 2
Scott Ekpe DT TX 2 2 2 3
Isaac Fruechte WR MN 2 2 JC 2
Jeremy Baltazar CB TX 2 2 JC 2
Alex Keith DE MO 2 2 2 2
Ben Lauer OL MN 2 2 NR 2

The Gophers lose three players from their commit list but add two in Andre McDonald and spectacularly-monikered Yoshoub Timms. They jump ahead of Illinois to finish the class ranked #12.

#13 Illinois - 19 Commits
Name Position State Rivals Scout ESPN 24/7
Dami Ayoola RB FL 3 3 3 3
T.J. Neal LB PA 3 3 3 3
Tajarvis Fuller LB FL 3 3 3 3
Joseph Spencer OL OH 3 3 3 3
Vontrell Williams DT IL 3 3 3 3
Elliot Faerber WR KS 3 3 2 2
Robert Bain OL IL 3 3 2 3
Devin Church RB MI 3 3 2 3
Mason Monheim LB OH 3 3 2 3
V'Angelo Bentley CB OH 3 3 NR 3
Tyler Barton S FL 3 2 2 2
Teko Powell DT FL 3 2 3 3
Lakeith Wells RB OH 3 3 2 3
Mike Svetina LB OH 3 2 2 2
Jevaris Little CB FL 3 2 NR 2
Jason Robertson WR IL 2 3 3 3
Ryan Frain K IN 2 3 2 2
Daniel Rhodes TE NC 2 2 2 2
Justin Hardee WR OH 2 2 NR 2
B.J. Bello S IL 2 2 NR 2

The Illini bring up the rear after losing Joey Warbug and picking up Devin Church, V'Angelo Bentley, Lakeith Wells, Mike Svetina, Jevaris Little, Daniel Rhodes, and B.J. Bello.

Comments

xcrunner1617

February 5th, 2012 at 4:55 PM ^

I feel like these numbers show why the Big Ten's perception always seems to take a hit come bowl season. Seven of the twelve teams with an average of less than three stars per recruit. Makes it tough to win those match ups out of conference when the SEC's seventh, eighth, or ninth ranked class would finish third in the Big Ten.

bronxblue

February 5th, 2012 at 6:00 PM ^

I think the rankings highlight more a bias for SEC teams than any talent discrepancy except at the very top of the rankings.  Yes, Alabama, LSU, Georgia, and Florida recruit very well, but teams like Ole Miss and Miss. St. find a way to "recruit" good players but never turn them into anything more than average players.  My sense is that this is more an indictment of the recruiting services, who perhaps invest/view more favorably metrics versus actual ability.  Oh yeah, and that whole nasty oversigning problem that allows teams like Arkansas signing 109(!!!) players in the past 4 classes.  

I'm not saying the SEC isn't a great conference football-wise, but there are reasons beyond the number of stars they accumulate that makes their classes "better" than the ones in the Big 10.

turd ferguson

February 5th, 2012 at 5:30 PM ^

Thanks for this.  I don't have a lot of experience with these scholarship distributions, but that seems like an interesting, probably undesirable imbalance across classes. 

They'll only have nine seniors next year, and even if you figure that:
     - a few of those juniors are RS juniors who won't be asked back and
     - a couple more kids will leave for whatever reason
... they probably won't get much higher than 15 again next year. 

If that's true, then they're a couple years away from having very, very few experienced players on their roster.

rederik

February 6th, 2012 at 8:58 AM ^

Thanks for the context, I thought the same thing [that Bielema had majorly dropped the ball with only twelve incoming freshmen]. I imagine this will hurt them down the road when these guys (and the next class of 12-14) are the upperclassmen and they have such a small number of them to lead the team.

mark5750

February 5th, 2012 at 5:07 PM ^

Does anybody know when Alex Kozan is going to announce.  I might not have seen the most recent update but the last I heard was he would anounce within 36 hours and that was three days ago.

HAIL 2 VICTORS

February 5th, 2012 at 6:11 PM ^

If by "bias" you mean the results of the last 5 BCS Championships then I agree with you.  As much as I want to blame the media, loactions of the bowls and any if not every excuse the proof is in the results. 

bronxblue

February 5th, 2012 at 6:18 PM ^

I will never disagree with the results of the SEC on the field, but the fact that their dominance has coincided, at least for LSU/Alabama, with massive oversigning and "roster management", definitely needs to be taken into account.  The SEC has always been full of talented teams, and at the top the difference between the top teams in every conference may be only 2-3 players at key positions.  When you have an extra man at every position every 4 years, that can definitely make the difference.

turd ferguson

February 5th, 2012 at 6:38 PM ^

Media bias and results on the field aren't entirely independent.  For example, it's not hard to win a national championship when you're given both teams in the national championship game.

Still, I agree with your broader point that the best football in recent years has been played in the SEC.

rkfischer

February 5th, 2012 at 7:25 PM ^

Bronxblue is correct. Just a couple of extra players making a couple of plays that go your way can mean the difference between winning and losing. Let's see how well the SEC does over the next 7 years versus the last 7 years. Especially after the last of the over signing classes graduates.

I'm surprised that I have not seen a study that shows the higher probability of long-term success of a Big10 athlete versus SEC athlete. By success I mean health/age, a career after sports, happiness, etc. Not that I would expect a 17 year old to care or understand but their coaches and parents might.

Vacuous Truth

February 5th, 2012 at 8:10 PM ^

Did anyone else notice that OSU's avg ranking is exactly 0.12 higher than M for all 4 services? Furthermore, should i be embarassed that i noticed something so pointless?

jka347

February 6th, 2012 at 11:27 AM ^

Tough to be upset with our great class, although I do wish we had landed a few of our final prospects to round it out and push us ahead of Ohio.  Oh well, great first haul by Hoke and co.