Posted by Bryan Fischer
1. Arizona State (#17 overall according to MaxPreps)
The Sun Devils have jumped out to grab the biggest class in the conference and done so by pounding away at Southern California. Quarterback T.J. Millweard out of Texas can compete for playing time early and receiver Kenny Lawler - if he sticks with his commitment - is also a player coming in with an eye on playing time.
2. Washington (#21)
Steve Sarkisian has one top 100 quarterback in Cyler Miles and another player at the position who did well at the Elite 11 in quarterback Jeff Lindquist. This class is largest but still has some talented in-state targets they are in the running for so the Huskies could certainly wind up with the top spot on Signing Day.
The Trojans are limited numbers-wise, they have a hard cap of 15 thanks to NCAA sanctions but the number is fluid when you consider transfers, early enrollees, etc. Arik Armstead is a unanimous five-star and could be an excellent left tackle if he chooses to play on offense. Linebackers Jabari Ruffin and Scott Starr have the tools physically to play for Monte Kiffin's defense.
The Utes move to the Pac-12 has already resulted in getting a higher quality group of athletes. Quarterback Travis Wilson was sharp at the Elite 11 and Chase Hansen is bigger and stronger than most athletes the school has been able to bring in. Both lines are represented well and Kyle Whittingham has several players he is still pursuing that could keep Utah in the upper echelon of the rankings.
A diverse class, the Cardinal has targeted athletes several athletes who can come in and develop with a redshirt year. Linebacker Noor Davis is the headliner and he holds offers from numerous elite programs but is heading West to join Stanford.
Tight end Taylor McNamara is the top tight end in Southern California and a player who tops the Wildcats' class. Josh Kern is an underrated quarterback out of Texas and local defensive end Dwight Melvin also contributes to a very solid class at the halfway mark to Signing Day.
It might take some time for him to develop but Shane Dillon is a Pac-12 caliber quarterback and the trio of Texas receivers who are committed are under the radar guys who can be solid contributors at the college level.
So far, the Ducks haven't seen a championship game appearance bounce on the recruiting trail. Quarterback Jake Rodrigues is the top prospect in the class and fits Oregon's offense well as a guy who has a strong arm but also has the wheels to run when needed. Tight end Evan Baylis is a nice pick up from Colorado.
9. Oregon State
Down the highway, the Beavers are doing what they normally do: scout, recruit and develop. Offensive lineman Isaac Sumalo is the son of a coach on staff and though he looked elsewhere, Oregon State managed to keep one of the top interior lineman from going to a Pac-12 rival. Receiver Malik Gilmore is a recruit who brings good size and an ability to create separation.
It's hard to figure out quite what the Bruins are doing on the recruiting trail because, in a strong year for California talent, the program has yet to land a top tier athlete. It's especially surprising given the surplus of elite offensive linemen and that's a huge position of need in Westwood. UCLA does have two all-name teamers in Steven Lakalaka and Psalm Wooching.
This class would be MUCH higher if you're going by quality but quantity has to come into play with team rankings given the fact that they have just four commits. Zach Kline is the top quarterback out West and receiver Bryce Treggs has exploded this summer on the camp and 7-on-7 circuit. Michael Barton is a top Bay Area prospect and a very good pick up for the Bears.
12. Washington State
Wazzu is doing a solid job of getting better talent than they have been in past years but the quality of talent still isn't like where the program was several years ago. Athlete Rashad Jackson is a nice grab out of Texas and the Cougars have done ok in California.
Ranking the Pac-12 recruiting classes
Posted on: August 11, 2011 10:06 am
Tags: Arik Armstead, Arizona, Arizona State, Bryce Treggs, Cal, Chase Hansen, Colorado, Cyler Miles, Dwight Melvin, Elite 11, Evan Baylis, Isaac Sumalo, Jabari Ruffin, Jake Rodrigues, Jeff Lindquist, Josh Kern, Kenny Lawler, Kyle Whittingham, Malik Gilmore, Michael Barton, Monte Kiffin, NCAA, Noor Davis, Oregon, Oregon State, Pac-12, Pac-12 preview, Psalm Wooching, Rashad Jackson, Scott Starr, Shane Dillon, Stanford, Steve Sarkisian, Steven Lakalaka, T.J. Millweard, Taylor McNamara, Travis Wilson, UCLA, USC, Utah, Washington, Washington State, Zach Kline