Florida Gators: Morris Claiborne

Ultimate 300: SEC's top classes 

January, 30, 2014

The SEC has dominated the recruiting world over the past several years. Since 2008, the SEC has had at least three schools finish in the top 10 of the ESPN recruiting class rankings each year. Last year, the conference had an impressive six schools ranked among the top 10 recruiting classes in the country. This year is much of the same, as seven SEC schools are ranked in the top 10.

Here’s a closer look at the five best recruiting SEC schools in the Ultimate ESPN 300.

The SEC leads the nation with five players on the preseason watch list for the 2012 Jim Thorpe Award, which is presented annually to the nation's best defensive back.

LSU, which owns the past two Thorpe Award winners -- Patrick Peterson (2010) and Morris Claiborne (2011) -- leads the SEC with two players on the watch list.

Here are all five SEC players on the Thorpe list:
For a complete look at the Thorpe watch list, go here.
Janoris Jenkins spent a year away from SEC ball, but it apparently didn't affect his physical abilities.

The North Alabama cornerback had what ESPN NFL draft analyst Todd McShay said was "the best workout among the corners" during the final day of the NFL combine Tuesday. The former Florida standout, who was dismissed by new Florida coach Will Muschamp days after his second drug-related arrest in three months last spring, ran the sixth-best 40-time (4.46) out of all of the defensive backs and McShay said Jenkins "seemed the most confident, agile, quick-moving corner in drills."

McShay broke down some of the top defensive backs from the final day of the combine and he was very high on Jenkins:
"His feet got up and down quickly in his backpedal, and he stayed compact while pedaling and showed the ability to smoothly flips his hips and run with receivers. He did mistime one jump after turning and running to a ball thrown down the sideline, but, other than that, Jenkins did a nice job locating and playing the ball."

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