Texas Longhorns: Ole Miss Rebels

There wasn’t a whole lot that 2014 defensive tackle Courtney Garnett (New Orleans/Saint Augustine) didn’t absolutely love about his visit to Texas on April 30.

He spoke as highly about the Longhorns as one could without showing his hand that he was committing soon, saying that he’d like to visit other schools to compare them to what he saw in Austin before he made a decision.

[+] EnlargeCourtney Garnett
William Wilkerson/ESPNNew Orleans defensive tackle Courtney Garnett had Texas on top after its spring game and decided he couldn't wait any longer.
Well, visits to Ole Miss and Mississippi State came over the weekend and, in his eyes, they didn’t compare to Texas. So Garnett went ahead and committed to the Longhorns.

“I think it is just a great fit. I think it’s going to be a great fit for me and my family,” Garnett said. “I have some family in Austin there already. It’s going to be great for me to go out there and take my talents to Texas and be coached by [defensive tackles coach Bo [Davis]. He is a great coach and will elevate me to where I want to be.”

Coach Davis’ role in this recruitment cannot be understated. He was one of the central figures behind getting Garnett (6-foot-2, 280 pounds) to commit.

“I think he is just a great guy,” Garnett said. “He has coached a lot of guys in the NFL and cares about his guys in college. Just being under him I know I can be the player I want. He’s a great coach.”

(Read full post)

Numbers to know from signing day

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1 – Alabama’s class rank. Every year that head coach Nick Saban has had a full season to recruit (since 2008), the Crimson Tide have had a top-three class. No other school has even had a top-10 class each of the past six years. Alabama received commitments from three of the top-10 running backs, plus Derrick Henry (No. 9 in ESPN 300, No. 1 Athlete), the leading rusher in high school football history.

3 – Number of Ole Miss’s recruits ranked in the top 20 of the ESPN 300. Since ESPN recruiting rankings were introduced in 2006, Ole Miss had never had a single top-20 recruit. Head coach Hugh Freeze received letters of intent from two of the top five recruits, including the top ranked player in the ESPN 300, DE Robert Nkemdiche.

7 – Number of players since November who have decommitted from USC, and all were in the ESPN 300. USC’s class was ranked No. 1 for more than three months between July and November, but now it's ranked 14th. Two of those decommits, Eldridge Massington (No. 172 in ESPN 300, No. 21 WR) and Kylie Fitts (No. 86 in ESPN 300, No. 8 DE) flipped their commitments to rival UCLA. The Bruins finished the day with the 12th-ranked class, the first time since 2006 they finished ahead of their crosstown rival.

7 – The number of top-10 recruiting classes Urban Meyer has had since 2006, and not one of those classes ranked lower than sixth. The only other coach with seven top-10 classes is Mack Brown. This year, Meyer and Ohio State scored the No. 3 recruiting class, headlined by CB Eli Apple (No. 11 in ESPN 300, No. 3 CB).

7 – The number of top-five recruiting classes Florida has had since 2006, most among all schools. Entering National Signing Day, the Gators had the top-ranked class before finishing the day second. Florida is one of three schools with multiple five-star recruits this year (Ole Miss and Notre Dame).

12 – The number of four-star recruits Vanderbilt has received letters of intent from. The past two seasons, James Franklin has recruited 15 players with a grade of 80 or better. In the previous four seasons, Vanderbilt didn’t recruit a single such player.

14 - The number of SEC schools with top-40 recruiting classes. All 14 schools have top-40 classes, with none lower than 36th (Kentucky). Six of those schools are ranked in the top 10, the most any conference has had since 2006.

15 – Texas’ class rank, the Longhorns' lowest since 2006. Texas had been the only school with a top-10 class every year since 2006. Texas still had the highest ranked recruiting class in the Big 12.

15 – Number of players in the ESPN 300 that have yet to sign letters of intent. Eleven have yet to commit to any school while four have yet to sign their letters of intent for various reasons.

16 - The number of states Notre Dame’s 23 recruits reside in. Notre Dame has the No. 4 class this season, the highest ranked class it has had since 2006. It’s Notre Dame’s sixth top-10 class and third straight under Brian Kelly.

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