Although there has been a lot of conference realignment talk, that hasn’t slowed down Big 12 teams on the recruiting trail. There isn’t much the coaches can do to change what is going on with the college football landscape, other than continue to make their teams better.
With new commitments coming every day, teams have started to get an idea of the pieces they will be bringing in with the class of 2023. There are still some top recruits that have yet to make their decision and a lot can change before signing day, but that doesn’t have to stop fans from being excited about how they have committed to their teams. The early signing period will begin on December 21st and end on December 23rd, giving teams some security before National Signing Day on February 1st.
According to 247Sports, these are the class of 2023 team rankings for the Big 12:
1. Texas Longhorns
With the Longhorns recruiting class being headlined by the #1 overall recruit in Arch Manning, Texas ranks first amongst the Big 12. For the class of 2023, the Longhorns have commitments from Manning and Derek Williams, who are the two 5-stars of their class. The Longhorns also have 12 4-stars and six 3-stars that have announced their commitments. June may have been the hottest month in recruiting history for Texas, securing 13 of their 20 commitments from in-state and having the Texas faithful feeling like they are back. Texas has been pretty even on both sides of the ball, with 11 offensive players and nine defensive players choosing to head to Austin to play under Steve Sarkisian. In the national rankings, the Longhorns currently rank fifth overall and look to continue to stay hot on the recruiting trail.
2. Oklahoma Sooners
After starting off July at fourth in the Big 12 team rankings, the Sooners have made some noise this month, climbing their way up to second. With all the chaos that has transpired, after Lincoln Riley decided to leave OU to become the next head coach at USC, Oklahoma has seemed to put that behind them. The Sooners are entering their first year under Brent Venables and look to get back to their winning ways. Oklahoma holds commitments from 18 recruits, with only one 5-star. They also hold commitments from nine 4-stars, and eight 3-stars in the class of 2023. The Sooners’ class is headlined by the 5th overall quarterback in the country, Jackson Arnold, who was named the Elite 11 MVP in June. Even though Arnold is the only 5-star, they still have some big names planning on heading to Norman. Others in the class of 2023 include Adepoju Adebawore, Jaquaize Pettaway, Cayden Green, and Derrick LeBlanc. Oklahoma currently sits at seventh overall in the country for the 2023 class, and continue to be after highly sought-after recruits.
3. Baylor Bears
Although Baylor is without a 5-star commit, the Bears rank third in the Big 12. Baylor currently has 23 commitments in the class of 2023, which include three 4-stars and 19 3-stars. The Bears have seemed to be comfortable staying in-state to grab their recruits, with 18 of their commitments coming from Texas. This has to make Baylor fans happy, since the state of Texas has always seemed to be a recruiting stronghold. The class of 2023 for Baylor is headlined by 4-star quarterback Austin Novosad, who is the 11th ranked QB in the country, in a position that is need of some depth after last year’s starter Gerry Bohanon announced he would be transferring to South Florida. They also have a commitment from 4-star offensive tackle Isaiah Robinson, who they secured to start the month of July. The Bears rank 15th nationally for the class of 2023, as Dave Aranda enters his third year as head coach.
4. Texas Tech Red Raiders
As Texas Tech starts out their new era under Joey McGuire, the Red Raiders currently have the fourth overall class in the Big 12. They have been decently quiet as of late, with only two commitments coming in July. Texas Tech’s class is headlined by two 4-star recruits, Isaiah Crawford and Brenden Jordan. The Red Raiders have, also, been comfortable staying in the state of Texas. The class of 2023 consists of 20 in-state recruits, out of their 23 commitments. Out of those 23 commitments, the Red Raiders class contains 21 3-star recruits. Texas Tech currently holds the 16th ranked recruiting class in the country, which would blow last years class out of the water. The class of 2022 finished with an overall ranking of 46th, so the Red Raiders have already seen a positive impact with the hiring of McGuire.
5. TCU Horned Frogs
The Horned Frogs currently rank fifth overall in the Big 12 for the class of 2023, and 24th nationally. TCU is entering their first season under head coach Sonny Dykes, and will try to build on what former head coach Gary Patterson did for their football program. The class of 2023 for the Horned Frogs holds 17 commitments, with three 4-stars and 14 3-stars. TCU’s class is headlined by 4-star defensive lineman Avion Carter. As stated before, Texas seems to be a recruiting stronghold, with 15 out of TCU’s 17 commitments coming from the state of Texas. July was a good month for the Horned Frogs, gaining commitments from 4-star running back Cameron Cook and 3-star prospects Keviyan Huddleston, Kylan Salter, and Jonathan Bax.
6. West Virginia Mountaineers
The class of 2023 holds 16 commitments for the Mountaineers. West Virginia’s class consists of one 4-star and 15 3-stars. Head coach Neal Brown is entering his fourth season with the Mountaineers, so you can start to get an idea of what Brown is capable of on the recruiting trail. Currently, the class of 2023 ranks 28th nationally and will look to change the trend of their mediocre seasons. The month of June was a big month for West Virginia, gaining 11 of their 16 commitments. The class is headlined by 4-star wide receiver Rodney Gallagher. The Mountaineers have had quite a bit of turnover on their roster, so fans hope to see some improvements, after being ranked 8th on the Big 12 Football Media Preseason Poll.
7. Iowa State Cyclones
The Cyclones, currently, have seen an improvement in the rankings from the class of 2022 to the class of 2023. The class of 2023 sits at seventh in the Big 12, and is 30th in the country. Among the 19 commitments that Iowa State holds, one is a 4-star and 18 are 3-stars. The class is headlined by their 4-star quarterback commit JJ Kohl, who is the 12th ranked quarterback in the country. The Cyclone’ fans probably can’t wait to get Kohl on campus to improve their quarterback room, after long-time starter Brock Purdy finished his collegiate career and was drafted by the 49ers. Iowa State’s class of 2023 gained nine out of their 19 commitments in the month of June, and they received three of their commitments in July.
8. Kansas State Wildcats
Kansas State fans rejoiced to the news of the commitment of 4-star quarterback Avery Johnson. The number one ranked recruit out of Kansas headlines the Wildcats class, after losing the commitment from 4-star running back Dylan Edwards. There is still time to see whether Kansas State can persuade Edwards to recommit, but Edwards decision won’t stop the Wildcats from going after other guys on their radar. Currently, Kansas State is ranked as the 44th overall class nationally. With more commitments yet to come, the Wildcats’ class is shaping up to be one of the best recruiting classes ever for the program. The class of 2023 has seen more size and speed than the Wildcats have grown accustomed to. Kansas State holds 16 commitments, with 13 of them being 3-stars. The ‘Cats have been dominating the in-state recruiting, having five of the top 11 prospects from Kansas.
9. Oklahoma State Cowboys
The Cowboys have been kind of quiet in the recruiting news, only holding ten commitments. With time left, we can expect to hear more from the Cowboys in the class of 2023, which currently ranks ninth in the Big 12 and 58th nationally. Nine of the ten commitments hold 3-star ratings, with Jelani McDonald being the lone 4-star prospect. Oklahoma State will have to fill some holes defensively this year, after losing five of their top six leading tacklers, so we can expect first-year defensive coordinator Derek Mason to be out on the recruiting trail to find guys to fit his defensive scheme.
10. Kansas Jayhawks
It is no shock that Kansas comes in last amongst the Big 12 in the recruiting rankings. The Jayhawks have just started to gain commitments, with zero commits going into the month of June. Kansas is entering their second season under head coach Lance Leipold, and will try to continue to improve after being a laughing stock in the Big 12 for the last decade plus. The Jayhawks class of 2023 ranks 73rd in the country, but all seven commits hold 3-star rankings. Their class is currently headlined by athlete Surahz Buncom and defensive lineman Tony Terry. Kansas secured two of their commitments in July, and will look to lock up more commitments from higher rated recruits and try to change the trend that they have been on.
If you don’t think that the Big 12 is competitive in football, then you should read up on things because seven of their teams currently sitting inside the top 30 classes, with plenty of time to go for their teams to climb in the rankings. We will have to wait to see what happens as the season unfolds for these classes, but Big 12 fans should be excited for what has occurred so far during the recruiting process.