2014 National Signing Day: Breakdown for the Big Ten
- Updated: January 29, 2014
For college football fans, Christmas time is here. There may be no action on the football field, but there is plenty of action off the field as football recruits will choose where they will play next season. National signing day has become a holiday for the diehard fans as they keep their fingers crossed hoping that their team will land some of the best recruits available.
February 5th is the big day and one of the conferences that will look to make a big splash is the Big Ten. Ohio State has the edge with Urban Meyer at the helm, but a few other teams will try and grab that five star prospect. With eight recruits among the Rivals.com 100, Ohio State’s class is the best in the Big Ten and No. 2 in the country, according to Rivals and 247Sports. Ohio State has already received a commitment from Damon Webb a five star recruit cornerback from Detroit. They also have wide receiver Johnnie Dixon in the fold, who is ready to win championships for Ohio State. This could be just the beginning for a Buckeye team that has the chance to win a national title.
Michigan and Penn State is a distant second and third, though the major recruiting sites differ on which school follows Ohio State in the conference’s recruiting rankings. Michigan’s class is small, but strong; the Wolverines’ 16 commits include one five-star recruit and six four-star recruits. Penn State, meanwhile, has made great strides since hiring James Franklin from Vanderbilt. Franklin and his staff have added seven verbal commitments, including five from players who had previously committed to the Commodores. Franklin’s staff is loaded with coaches with Pennsylvania ties, which should improve the Nittany Lions’ in-state recruiting going forward. This year, none of Rivals.com’s top 10 recruits from Pennsylvania are headed to Happy Valley.
In addition to the Big Ten’s big three, Wisconsin, Michigan State and Nebraska all rank among Rivals’ top 30 classes. The Big Ten has some great coaches that will be very competitive as they try and stake claim to the best players in the country.
From a betting stand point it will be interesting to see how the wagering odds will be affected after signing day is complete. Currently at the top rated online sportsbooks, Ohio State is the favorite to win the Big Ten, which comes as no surprise with Wisconsin and Michigan State also in the running. Nebraska, Michigan and Penn State are long shots to take the title.
The signing that teams will make on February 5th will not only affect the future of the team this season, but they will affect teams for years to come.