|ESPN.com: On The Trail: West Region||[Print without images]|
Down the stretch we come. Signing day for the Class of 2014 is fewer than 100 days away, and the marathon is turning into a sprint. Teams are jockeying to get into position for the critical December and January official visit period, and by the end of November, coaches will be flocking to the homes of prospects all over the country for visits. You never know what might happen, but here are 10 bold predictions for what we'll see on national signing day.
Leonard Fournette signs with Alabama
The Crimson Tide are assembling the best offensive line class in ages, and that foundation is the key thing that helps win over Fournette, the nation's No. 1 player, in the end. This certainly is an against-the-grain projection because LSU has been the team to beat with Fournette for quite some time, but he also understands that his decision is a business one and he has to do what's best for him in the long term. Having seven of the most highly rated offensive linemen in front of him, including No. 1 tackle Cameron Robinson, No. 1 guard Ross Pierschbacher and No. 1 center Josh Casher will eventually help win the battle for Alabama. Also, never underestimate the recruiting power of Nick Saban.
Ohio State finishes with a top-five class
Nobody loves the final push of recruiting more than Urban Meyer, and Ohio State will close strong with the second half of its best back-to-back classes in years. Last year's final push resulted in electrifying freshman Dontre Wilson. Who will be this year's last-minute surprise? Either way, given Meyer's track with record recruiting and the Buckeyes' success on the field, expect OSU to follow up last year's No. 3 finish with another terrific 2014 crop. But the quality and quantity of other teams' classes such as LSU, Tennessee, Florida State and Alabama will keep them from climbing higher.
Jameis Winston is FSU's best recruiter
Florida State has around seven spots remaining in its 2014 class, and several impact offensive recruits such as ESPN 300 receiver Josh Malone (Gallatin, Tenn./Station Camp) and ESPN 300 running backs Dalvin Cook (Miami/Central) and Joe Mixon (Oakley, Calif./Freedom) remain on the board. The Noles will use the momentum from quarterback Jameis Winston's success and popularity, much like Texas A&M did last year with Johnny Manziel, to close strong with some impressive offensive weapons in the class.
To continue reading, click here .