It’s finally here: National Signing Day 2012. All those kids we first heard about last spring and have followed to see how they developed during their senior season have now had their final evaluations from various recruiting services. All of the official college visits are complete and for a select few top talents, the only thing remaining is to announce to the world where they will be playing the next few years of college football.
This is, no doubt, Christmas morning for recruiting addicts. So, hold on to your jock straps because it’s going to be a crazy ride today. Some fan will go home crying, while others will go home with what they think is the next Tim Tebow or Cam Newton.
This year is, however, slightly different, with so many highly rated and uncommitted prospects still left on the board. It’s unlike any year in recent memory.
Without further ado, here are the top uncommitted prospects worth watching on National Signing Day. Watch all those LOIs roll in for the following prospects:
Dorial Green-Beckham: From Springfield, Missouri, DGB is widely considered the overall top talent in the country. At 6-6 and 220 lbs, DGB has the opportunity to help any coach get his program to the next level; he has the ability to help a lucky quarterback take his numbers to the next level as well. DGB will announce today at 10:15 ET on ESPNU between Alabama, Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas. DGB has played it quite close to the vest during the recruiting process, but today is D-Day for Mr. Green-Beckham.
Kyle Murphy: Murphy is one of the most highly sought after offensive line prospects in the country. The giant West Coast lineman will be a force wherever he decides to attend school. Murphy is 6-7 and 275 lbs, and he has tremendous upside to his game on the field. There are two schools in play for Murphy: USC and Stanford. Stanford has long-been thought the destination for Mr. Murphy, but his most recent visit to USC could have him thinking differently.
Eddie Goldman: When you talk about a monster defensive tackle, you are talking about Eddie Goldman. From Washington, D.C., Goldman is 6-4 and brings 310 lbs of power. His recruitment is essentially down to three schools in Auburn, Alabama and Florida State. Most analysts believe FSU and Auburn are the more likely destinations, with Alabama on the outside looking in. Goldman will announce today at 10:30 AM ET on ESPNU.
Stefon Diggs: Diggs could be the best raw playmaker in the 2012 class. Although DGB is the top-ranked wide receiver, Diggs is a close second. He played both ways in high school, and he has the ability to play either offense or defense in college as well. Getting this kid the football should be the goal each and every time Diggs takes the field. Anyhow, Maryland, Ohio State, Florida and Auburn are all in the hunt for his services. Maryland is his in-state program, but OSU, Florida and Auburn are more likely destinations. Fans are hoping Diggs announces today, but there’s a chance he may wait until February 10th.
Nelson Agholor: Joining Diggs in the group of top playmakers this year is Nelson Agholor from Tampa, FL. Agholor will play receiver at the next level, but it might take a year or two for him to hone his wide receiver skills because he played running back in high school. However, he is just too athletic and fast to keep off the field. One interview with Agholor, and he will leave you wanting more because of his intelligence and charm. He will decide today between Florida, USC and Oklahoma, among others.
Tracy Howard: You want an interesting recruitment? Look no further than Tracy Howard. Howard is from South Florida and is rated by some recruiting services to be the top overall defensive back in the country. His dad loves Miami and his mother loves Florida. So, could he end up choosing a neutral team in the Seminoles? He was thought to be a lock for Miami, however, other recruiting experts believe he’s heading to either Florida State or Florida. He will decide at 9:35 AM ET on ESPNU between the three Florida-based powerhouses.
Ronald Darby: Darby, along with Diggs, hails from Maryland. He had been committed to Notre Dame for quite a while until he decommitted a few weeks ago. Darby has great speed and great cover skills at corner, and he will be a great player as he develops over the next few years. Darby’s top three schools are Auburn, Clemson and Florida State. In addition to football, he will also intends to run track at the next level.
Josh Harvey-Clemons: Harvey-Clemons is another freakish athlete in this class. He’s 6-5 and 200 lbs, and he is expected to ultimately end up at outside linebacker in college because of his off-the-edge rushing skills. However, he is also good enough to play wide receiver at the next level. This is a four-horse race with Miami, Florida State, Georgia and Florida all jockeying for his services. Three of the four feel good about him heading into today. This one is too close to call.
Thomas Johnson: From Dallas, Texas, Johnson is a former Longhorn commit, but he has since decommitted. He is a speedy 5-11, 176 lb wide receiver who is currently considering Oregon, TCU and Texas A&M. Averaging over 18 yards per reception in his senior season, Johnson will bring big playmaking skills to whatever team he chooses.
Andrus Peat: The 6-7, 282 lb offensive tackle has offers from everywhere in the country, and he has tremendous upside. He hails from Arizona, but it is not likely he will end up anywhere in his home state. Peat will choose between USC, Stanford and Nebraska. The Cornhuskers are figured to be the favorites here because his brother currently plays for them. Peat will announce at 1:35 PM ET on ESPNU.
Davonte Neal: Neal is a fast, electric wide receiver from Arizona. At 5-10, 175 lbs, Neal runs a 4.4 40 Neal lists five teams as favorites heading into today in Arizona, Arizona State, Arkansas, Notre Dame and Ohio State. Before Neal lived in Arizona, he lived in Ohio. Do you think Urban Meyer could use a tremendous athlete in his spread offense? I think we all know that answer. This one is close to call and Neal could end up pulling any of the five hats today.
Aziz Shittu: Aside from having one of the best names in the 2012 recruiting cycle, Shittu is also very good at the defensive tackle position at 6-3, 275 lbs. Last April, Shittu committed to Stanford, but he has since backed off from that commitment. Stanford, however, is still high on his list, but Cal, UCLA, USC, Washington, Texas A&M and Michigan have all moved into the picture as well. Shittu will decide today at 5:00 PM ET at his high school.
Kwon Alexander: Alexander is one of the most heavily recruited linebackers in the country, and he will most likely stay in the SEC being from Alabama. Both in-state programs in Alabama and Auburn, as well as LSU, are after the talented prospect. Unfortunately, Alexander tore his ACL during his senior season, but he is expected to make a full recovery. The injury has not stopped the top programs from recruiting this young man. One of the three will be getting a very talented linebacker. Alexander will announce at 10:00 AM ET on ESPNU.
Joel Caleb: Caleb is another standout athlete from Virginia and has speed to burn. Being from Virginia, Caleb has Virginia Tech and West Virginia as the two most likely destinations for his services for the next four years. Another school that Caleb really likes is Ohio State, but the Buckeyes have limited spots left. Most analysts expect Caleb to choose between the Mountaineers and the Hokies.
Ricardo Louis: Louis’ recruitment has been intriguing to say the least. The wide receiver was first committed to Auburn, and then he decommitted and committed to Florida State. He then decided to decommit from FSU shortly thereafter. Now, he’s going to make a big announcement between, yet again, Florida State and Auburn. Even though he is listed as a receiver, many think Louis could be a better defensive back.
Dalvin Tomlinson: Three schools stand out for the talented 6-3, 260 lb defensive tackle from McDonough, GA. He will be deciding between two in-state schools in Georgia and Georgia Tech, as well as the out-of-state Alabama Crimson Tide. Whichever school he chooses, Tomlinson has a great future ahead of him.
Leonard Williams: Williams is a beast of a defensive lineman. He has not been playing football all that long, and he has developed really fast into his 6-5, 260 lb frame. He has a mean streak in him that most players do not possess at such a young age, and he has the ability to be an instant-impact player at the next level. There are four teams in this race in USC, Auburn, Florida and Florida State. All four teams feel good about Williams. Williams will announce his intentions today.
Avery Young: Young is one of the more underrated offensive linemen in this class despite coming in at 6-6 and 270 lbs. Young’s father lives in South Florida, and his mother lives in Atlanta. This is a four-horse race between Florida, Georgia, Miami and Auburn. It could be any one of the four, and this is just too close to call. Young announces at 2:00 PM ET on ESPNU.
Committed prospects that could pull the National Signing Day switch:
Dante Fowler: Fowler is one of the top-rated defensive ends in the country. He has great speed and power off the edge. Fowler is currently committed to Florida State, and he has been for quite some time. However, he continually visits Florida, and he seems to be enamored with the school and coaching staff. He recently said he was 100% committed to FSU, but something is going on between Fowler and the Gators. Even though he is committed to FSU, he says he will choose today between Florida and Florida State. This one should be interesting.
Jameis Winston: Winston is a top-rated dual-threat quarterback from Alabama. He’s been committed to Florida State since last January, but he has confirmed a recent report that he is considering Stanford very heavily. Winston is said to choose between the two schools today. There is a rumor that Winston is waiting to hear whether or not he can get into Stanford.
Landon Collins: Collins is from Louisiana, and he committed to Alabama at the Under Armour All-American Game a little less than a month ago. However, there has been some talk whether or not Collins will pull the switch today and sign with the in-state LSU Tigers. I do expect Collins to stay strong to his commitment to Alabama, but his mom loves LSU (as she told the world on national television).