With the second signing period over and done, it’s on to the class of 2021. But before we move ahead, I thought it would be a good idea to put a bow on the 2020 class and show where these Big 12 teams stand and who are the headliners of each class. I know most have signed or already on campus but with a few last-minute additions, I wanted to wait until all the dust was settled. On Thursday, I will drop schools ranked in the top half of the conference and wrap up on Friday with the bottom half.
*All Rankings Provided By 247Sports
Texas (National Rank: 9th Big 12 Rank: 1st)
Running Back Bijan Robinson (Tucson, AZ)
Anytime Texas can not only grab a five-star player but a number one player at his position is a big deal. Robinson is ranked as the number one running back in the country and when you pop on the film, it’s easy to see why as he broke the all-time Arizona high school rushing record. The talent is there, and he should immediately be the best back that Texas will have heading into the fall.
4-Star QB Hudson Card (Austin, TX)
I have seen Card in person a few times and even once as a wide receiver back in 2017. He can run the football when needed and can put some nice touch on the football outside the pocket. Although he will do his best work from inside the pocket throwing darts. If there is any knock on him, it’s that he is too slender and will need some work in the weight room.
4-Star QB Ja’Quinden Jackson (Duncanville, TX)
If you live in the state of Texas, you likely know exactly who Ja’Quinden is due to his team playing in back to back 6A title games. There was chatter with certain schools to see if they would move him but make no mistake, he is a quarterback. He has good zip on the ball with a big arm but just needs to work on a few things. While he isn’t the most polished passer, he is a tough, physical runner who can get two yards or forty yards when needed.
With just nineteen signees, Texas still found themselves in the top ten for the 2020 class. What they lack in numbers, they make up for in pure talent. Adding 4-star athlete Kelvontay Dixon and 5-star defensive end Alfred Collins on Wednesday was huge for Texas and helped them sneak into the top ten. I could say this almost every year, but the talent is here and now it just needs to be properly developed into something more.
Oklahoma (National Rank: 11th Big 12 Rank: 2nd)
4-Star OG Nate Anderson (Frisco, TX)
Yes, that’s right, offensive lineman can get the spotlight too! Rated as the number one guard in the country, Nate is as good as advertised. He is athletic, can finish blocks and is someone who I see as a future All-American on the offensive line. Oklahoma offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh struck gold here and it appears that Nate will fit right into what the Sooners are doing up front. Maybe he isn’t that instant impact guy but mark my words, he will be a household name in two years.
3-Star QB Chandler Morris (Dallas, TX)
While people are likely going to think that Chandler (Yes, the son of Chad Morris) is a bridge player between Spencer Rattler and whoever the 2021 quarterback will be, I would advise you to hold off on that and meet Chandler Morris. When I threw on the film, his athleticism jumped out to me and he can not only get that needed first down but maybe take it twenty or thirty yards down the sideline. He is a very smooth passer with good arm motion and if there is any knock on him at all, it’s the zip on some of his passes.
What can I say? Lincoln Riley and his new and improved staff are putting in the work and getting results. I love the big guys up front grabbing the nation’s top two guards (Nate Anderson and Andrew Raym) and a guy to keep an eye on is wide out Marvin Mims who is the all-time leader in receiving yards in Texas high school football history. This class also did a great job filling some needs on the defensive line and secondary.
TCU (National Rank: 28th Big 12 Rank: 3rd)
4-Star WR Quentin Johnson (Temple, TX)
Once a Texas commit, Quentin Johnson is possibly my favorite wide out in the 2020 class in the Big 12. He can blow by defenders and excels deep down the field. Not to mention, he can take a two-yard pass for a long score because he is just downright explosive with every move and cut. Once he adds weight to his 6’4 frame, he will be the next great TCU wide out and I wouldn’t be surprised if he becomes the number one guy as a true freshman.
3-Star QB Eli Williams (Sapulpa, OK)
Eli had a very good build too him already and shows his ability to take off and run the football with a purpose on film. However, he is still raw as a passer and I would have like to see him read through his progressions more and quite frankly, throw the football more. He didn’t look too fazed making a play on the run at times but there are still things he will need to work on at the next level from a passing standpoint.
I said this on Twitter, but TCU has firmly established themselves as the third best team when it comes to recruiting finishing behind Texas and Oklahoma for the last few years. With just eighteen signees, the Frogs are bringing in some serious talent and how about these wide outs? I mentioned Quentin Johnson, but TCU was also able to grab 4-Star Savion Williams on signing day as well giving the Frogs two top thirty wide outs. I have said this before, but the talent is there for TCU to make a Big 12 title run. It’s just time for a quarterback to catch up.
West Virginia (National Rank: 37th Big 12 Rank: 4th)
4-Star ATH David Vincent-Okoli (Gaithersburg, MD)
I listed David as an athlete because I am not sure if he will play wide out or corner for the Mountaineers. If it were up to me, I would use that 10.7 100-meter dash speed on the offensive side of the football. It looked like that nobody could keep up with him on film on vertical routes and can take it to the house at any given moment. Although he will need some work on his routes since he isn’t exactly what I would call a “polished” receiver. The talent is there with him though and the Mountaineers can use all the help they can on offense.
3-Star QB Garrett Greene (Tallahassee, FL)
I am not going to lie. I wasn’t sure what to expect out of Garrett Greene, but I liked what I saw from him. He is listed as a dual threat and while he can certainly run with the football, it’s his passing abilities that I came away impressed by. Garrett was cool under pressure and was able to consistently find an open man downfield. When the play broke down, he didn’t always just take off and run with it. He is accurate on the move and looks comfortable in chaos. Of course, his arm and his accuracy help too. If there was a negative about him, it would likely be his gun slinger like play as you will see him take ill-advised risks from time to time but other than that, I really like this kid.
Not bad for West Virginia to crack the top 40 after a 5-7 season. I thought they could have used some additional playmakers, but they went heavy trying to get both lines stacked up with depth. It may not be the flashiest class on paper, but you can never under value a good offensive or defensive line. If they can hit on a couple of those guys in the trenches, then this class will be worth it. Of course, I must mention quarterback Garrett Greene again and call me crazy, but it wouldn’t shock me if he turns some heads in spring camp and maybe is in contention for a starting job in the fall.
Oklahoma State (National Rank: 45th Big 12 Rank: 5th)
3-Star WR Matt Polk (Scottsdale, AZ)
By now you should know that I love those tall receivers and Matt Polk fits the bill sitting at 6’4. What I like most about him is his ability to high point the football and snatch it right out of the air before anyone else can come close to it. For his size, he moves well and can break through some arm tackles either down the field or in the screen game. He doesn’t have that breakaway speed, but he can shake guys at the line and work his away around defenders.
4-Star QB Shane Illingworth (Norco, CA)
Bravo Oklahoma State bravo. Shane is a pure pocket passer and shows off a little bit of Big Ben in the pocket by dodging a tackler or two before throwing a laser down the field. He isn’t afraid to stand in the pocket and take a hit or put his head down to grab a quick first down in a short yardage situation. Plus, he is a big kid at 6’6. As far as passing capabilities go, he may be the best pure all-around passer I have seen so far when evaluating these Big 12 quarterbacks. Shane Illingworth will be a starter at some point for the Cowboys or someone else down the road.
3-Star JUCO QB Ethan Bullock (City College of San Francisco)
Very interesting film here and I can see why maybe the Cowboys want to bring in someone a little older. Ethan is more athletic than Shane, but I wouldn’t say he is a better passer overall. Ethan appears to be cool in the pocket and doesn’t get rattled which is always a good sign. Plus, he doesn’t just take off when something isn’t there. He goes through his reads and makes a play. My knock on him would be at times his footwork isn’t super clean and he could step into some of his throws more to get more zip on the ball.
For starters, it still baffles me every year that this program isn’t recruiting at a top thirty level. All that aside, I like what the Cowboys are bringing in offensively with the two quarterbacks, wide out Matt Polk and even grabbing a couple of solid offensive linemen with Trent Pullen and Eli Russ. However, I am kind of curious of what they are doing on defense especially with some of these smaller safeties and corners under six foot.
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