Counter Intel is the smart Ohio State fan's look at recruiting action taking place within the Big Ten and top national programs.
We've reached the midway point of June, and two weeks of official visits are now in the books. There's plenty of noteworthy news from what continues to be a month like no other on the recruiting trail.
Mizzou Flips LSU Commit
Three-star Texas cornerback Marcus Scott II committed to LSU back in January. Shortly after his pledge, Ed Orgeron's class added a few more guys, including a pair of four-star corners. By most accounts, Scott wouldn't end up signing with the Tigers' 2022 class. Yesterday, the 6-foot-2, 170-pounder officially backed off of his pledge and decided to team up with a different kind of Tiger.
The move brings LSU's class down to 11 commitments, which is still good enough for No. 2 in the country. More importantly to Ohio State fans, the Buckeyes maintain a nice little lead at the top of the national rankings. Ryan Day's class had fallen down to No. 3 in the rankings, but he's now holding strong with a 34-point lead on the Tigers.
The Hits Keep Coming in Athens
Last week it was five-star 2022 defensive tackle Bear Alexander that backed off his Georgia commitment. 24 hours after that bit of news dropped, Kirby Smart was hit with another five-star decommit in the 2022 class. In-state athlete Deyon "Smoke" Bouie had been committed to the Dawgs since last November, but much like Alexander, he decided to open things back up after a visit to Texas A&M. Bouie is the No. 34 player in the country and seems destined to wind up somewhere in the Southeast. After briefly taking the top spot in the team rankings, Georgia now finds itself sitting at No. 4.
The Dawgs also lost a different kind of five-star late last week. Demetris Robertson was the No. 1 wideout in the country in the 2016 recruiting class. After originally signing with California, Robertson transferred to Georgia after the 2017 season. He had a solid freshman season at Cal totaling 767 receiving yards and seven scores, but he hasn't lived up to the five-star billing. Robertson was expected to have a role in Athens this season thanks to some injuries and attrition at wideout.
Sooners Lose One, Too
There are certain programs that are always going to put up a fight at select positions. Notre Dame is a formidable foe when it comes to recruiting battles along the offensive line and at tight end. LSU can be tough to top in the secondary. And then of course you have Alabama and Clemson who recruit just about every position at an elite level. Lincoln Riley has turned Oklahoma into a factory for quarterbacks and skill position players, so the Sooners most recent loss was a bit of a surprise.
RESPECT MY DECISION pic.twitter.com/TN8wPX8ZEf— Jordan Hudson (@d1Jordan3) June 14, 2021
Texas wideout Jordan Hudson is the nation's No. 114 prospect and 14th-best pass-catcher. He committed to Oklahoma last July, and nearly a year later, he's opened things back up. Hudson holds offers from programs like Alabama, Auburn, and LSU. One would think that he may end up at a program of that caliber, but many expect he could soon commit to Southern Methodist. The Mustangs signed four-star Texas quarterback Preston Stone in the 2021 class. Hudson will head to Dallas this weekend for an official visit
Some Big Additions in B1G Country
It was also a fruitful week across the Big Ten. We'll start in Lincoln as Scott Frost picked up his 2022 quarterback just yesterday. Three-star Texan Richard Torres chose the Huskers over the likes of Kansas State and Utah. It was commitment No. 4 for a Nebraska class that's not doing so hot right now as Frost's current haul is ranked No. 59 in the country.
Purdue added a pair in the trenches with three-star defensive lineman Nic Caraway and three-star Portage, Michigan offensive tackle Cross Watson. Mel Tucker went down to Georgia to grab three-star safety Quavian Carter, He's got some impressive size at 6-foot-4 and 200 pounds. Minnesota's class is up to seven commits and sits at No. 8 in the league. P.J. Fleck's latest additions came in the form of three-star Texas tailback Zach Evans and in-state tight end Spencer Alvarez. Northwestern got in on the action too with a commitment from three-star Kansas offensive lineman Nick Herzog.
Louisville Graphics Team: Not Great
I know hardly anyone actually cares about Louisville football recruiting as it's rarely ever worth paying much attention to. Buckeye lineman Zen Michalski was a Cardinal commit before Ohio State offered and shook things up. Urban Meyer was after wide receiver James Quick nine years ago before the top-100 prospect sided with his hometown team.
In the middle of the busiest month we've ever seen, the Louisville recruiting staff is taking things to a different level.
Louisville found a way to spell the word Official wrong on the welcome materials they gave for their Official Visits this weekend pic.twitter.com/0ZROk7z71E— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) June 12, 2021
Coincidentally, one day before the big visit weekend started, it was announced that the Cardinals were losing recruiting coordinator David Cooper to Georgia. Louisville's 2022 class has just two commitments and checks in at No. 13 in the ACC and No. 67 nationally.
Bama Flips Aussie Punter
Alabama's unlimited amount of space continues to provide for the 2021 class. Australia's James Burnip was an Ole Miss commit up until Sunday and was planning to enroll in Oxford next year. Instead, he'll head to Tuscaloosa and join the Crimson Tide this fall. I've always been a fan of Aussie specialists; especially ones that are 6-foot-6 and 215 pounds.
For those keeping track at home, that makes 28 signees for Nick Saban's 2021 class to go along with three portal additions. The Tide remain a strong contender for five-star defensive end J.T. Tuimoloau as well. The Washington native heads to Columbus this weekend for his official visit. He'll check out Alabama on June 25.
More Movement in the Team Rankings
Ohio State landing four-star wideout Kaleb Brown last week – along with some other programs' decommits – helped the Buckeyes to vault back up to the top of the national team rankings. Perhaps even more importantly, the 94.52 average rating is also top in America.
Ed Orgeron and Brian Kelly are both holding strong toward the top of the rankings. It's actually pretty impressive that Georgia is still sitting at No. 4 after losing a pair of five-star commitments last week. The next step for Kirby Smart is to start doing more with all of the talent that the Peach State produces.
Greg Schiano and the Knights are still in a surprisingly strong position, and the Nittany Lions are the only other Big Ten team in the top-20. Michigan is sitting at No. 21 and Maryland checks in at No. 23. Five-star cornerback Will Johnson continues to be the gem of Jim Harbaugh's 2022 class. It looks like some good news could be on the way for the Wolverines, however. A few crystal balls have recently come in for a zero-star linebacker prospect who holds offers from Eastern Illinois and Marshall.
Meanwhile, Alabama is lurking at No. 12 in the rankings with seven commitments – including a pair of five-stars – and will obviously finish somewhere in the top three.