If you look at the calendar, national signing day for the 2013 cycle is just less than three months away. That means that the discussion about which program finishes on top of the 247Sports team rankings can begin.
USC still looks to be the favorite, but Alabama is closing. Michigan, Ohio State and even Florida all have puncher’s chances. The Crimson Tide has finished No. 1 in the 247Sports team rankings the last two cycles (2011 and 2012).
Every recruiting cycle, there are prospects that end up being huge factors in which program finishes on top. As things stand today, there are five that come to mind. Please note that the 247Sports team football recruiting rankings are based on the ratings and rankings from the 247Composite, in order to create the most accurate, industry-reflective team rankings.
1- Jalen Ramsey, CB, Brentwood (Tenn.) Brentwood Academy
Ramsey committed to USC on July 16 and remains pledged to the Trojans, but almost as soon as he announced his decision, rumblings began that the 247Composite five-star prospect would look around. Those rumblings proved to be accurate as he’s taken an official visit to Florida, an unofficial visit to Alabama and plans to officially visit Mississippi State and Vanderbilt as of right now. The Crimson Tide feels good about its current position with Ramsey and given a flip, he would take a five-star off the board for the Trojans and add one for Alabama. This could have a big impact at the top. Ramsey is the nation’s No. 25 overall prospect according to the 247Composite.
2- Montravius Adams, DT, Vienna (Ga.) Dooly County
Adams is the No. 7 overall prospect in the 247Composite (No. 2 by 247Sports) and the five-star trenchman has a number of strong suitors at this point. Clemson has been the strongest longest and the Tigers can never be ruled out. Auburn looked to be the likely destination for a while, but with coaching turmoil on the plains, can they still be looked at as being in the driver’s seat? Alabama is in the thick of things and has been trending. Georgia has gotten Adams on campus twice in the last 30 days and he’s a huge in-state priority for the Bulldogs. The darkhorse here is USC. Adams’ mother is going to have a big say in this decision, so it’s hard to grasp him going all the way across the country to play football and go to college, but make no mistake that at this moment, the Trojans are in it. Should USC or the Crimson Tide land Adams, it could be the difference in having the nation’s top class.
3- Vonn Bell, S, Rossville (Ga.) Ridgeland
Bell, a 247Composite four-star and the No. 54 overall prospect, has three teams at the top- Alabama, Ohio State and Tennessee (alphabetical order). Should be pick the Crimson Tide or Buckeyes (depending on what happens with the Vols coaching situation), he could serve as a catalyst for either program to move up in the team rankings. Bell is one of several high-level defensive backs (he’s a five-star according to 247Sports) that Alabama is in the mix with.
4- Leon McQuay III, S, Seffner (Fla.) Armwood
If McQuay, the No. 27 overall prospect according to the 247Composite and a five-star, ends up heading to the West Coast and USC, then he could end up softening the blow of the Trojans losing Max Redfield, who de-committed this past weekend. Of course, Redfield could still end up at SC when all is said and done, but McQuay, a five-star according to the 247Composite, could have more value. McQuay also could factor in if he elects to attend Michigan, which sits at No. 3 in the 247Sports team rankings. His addition may not vault the Wolverines to No. 1, but it could put some distance between the Maize and Blue and Ohio State for the No. 1 class in the Big Ten.
5- Laremy Tunsil, OT, Lake City (Fla.) Columbia
Only if he ends up at Alabama will Tunsil have a huge impact on the No. 1 spot in the 247Sports team rankings. That being said, the Crimson Tide is at least in the top two with Georgia and could be the leader at this point. Tunsil’s 247Composite rating is 0.9984, which is a high-value number to add to the formula and his addition to the Tide’s current commits could vault the class closer or past No. 1 USC. If something strange happens and Tunsil elects to stay in-state and perhaps play for Florida, it could help the Gators move up as well. Right now, though, all indications are it’s Bama or UGA.
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