Published January 24, 2013 - 1:10pm
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The SEC wins the big game in January, and they win the big day in February on National Signing Day as well. That’s obviously no coincidence, because recruiting rankings carry over to Ws on the field. But closing strong down the stretch toward signing day is an art, and it’s what every coach wants to become in the SEC – the closer.
It’s no coincidence that two of the SEC’s best closers are apt to have a big two-week stretch til signing day, along with a flashy newcomer who is dominating recruiting in ‘13 in Hugh Freeze.
Programs like Florida, LSU and Texas A&M all have great classes and are top prospects, too, but Alabama, Georgia and Ole Miss have the most to gain down the stretch and on National Signing Day:
Still on the board: DE Robert Nkemdiche, DT Eddie Vanderdoes, OL Laremy Tunsil, DE Jason Carr, LB Reuben Foster, RB Alvin Kamara, DB Tony Conner, DT Dee Liner, DB Vonn Bell, DT Montravius Adams, DT Jay-nard Bostwick, LB Matthew Thomas
Likely to land: DT Dee Liner, DB Vonn Bell, RB Alvin Kamara, WR Eddie Jackson and DE Jason Carr (committed to Tennessee)
Buzz: Although Alabama will likely miss out on some of the top prospects on their remaining big board, they will land two of the main targets in Dee Liner and Von Bell. But the mere fact that all of the top uncommitted prospects are still on the board gives the Tide the opportunity to close very strong down the stretch.
Still on the board: DT Montravius Adams, LB Reuben Foster, OL Laremy Tunsil, RB Alvin Kamara, DT Toby Johnson, LB Matthew Thomas, DE Davin Bellamy (FSU commit)
Likely to land: OL Laremy Tunsil
Buzz: After Florida lost DC Dan Quinn, Montravius Adams started trending to a Georgia-Clemson battle, and the Bulldogs are right in the thick of it for Adams. I think they get Laremy Tunsil and possibly DT Toby Johnson, and landing either Adams, Reuben Foster or Alvin Kamara would be considered a strong finish. All three are a possibility and would be an epic close.
Still on the board: DE Robert Nkemdiche, OL Laremy Tunsil, DB Vonn Bell, OL Austin Golson, RB Jordan Wilkins and DB Tony Conner
Likely to land: DE Robert Nkemdiche, DB Tony Conner, RB Jordan Wilkins and OL Austin Golson (FSU commit)
Buzz: If Ole Miss lands Robert Nkemdiche, it will be considered the biggest splash in the SEC, and while they will likely land Nkemdiche, he won’t be the only other five-star in the class, because safety Tony Conner could join him. Any big stars other than Nkemdiche and Conner and it will be the strongest close in the country. Don’t forget that Hugh Freeze already has the top WR in the country in Laquon Treadwell as well as a top DE Elijah Daniel, assuming he makes his grades.
Photo Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports