Wake Forest

2017 ACC Recruiting & National Signing Day Class Rankings

2017 ACC Recruiting & National Signing Day Class Rankings


How did the ACC teams stack up with their respective recruiting classes? Who had the strongest-looking haul of talent, and who struggled a bit?


2017 All-ACC Recruiting/Signing Day Team
2017 ACC Schedule Breakdown

2017 ACC Recruiting Class Rankings

It’s been the Big Two, little 12 for a while now when it comes to the recruiting rankings.

Florida State and Clemson owned the talent haul over the last few years, with a big gap between them and North Carolina, and no one else was consistently in the same area code.

But that changes this season.

The Seminoles and Tigers have their share of next-level stars coming in, but with the conference’s rise overall, and with the new coaching blood at a few great programs, here come Miami and Virginia Tech, while Louisville and North Carolina did a good job yet again.

So how do the 2017 ACC recruiting classes stack up? Here’s how the rankings are figured out.

1) Bulk. Who gets the most talent? Sometimes, getting lots of good prospects is better than getting a few great ones.

2) Superstars. Yeah, getting the elite guys matters. Who got the supposedly best players?

3) The needs and hole filling. How do the programs manage to do what’s needed to get their types of players, at least compared to the others in the conference?

The goal is to get these close. Verify range to target – one ping only …

14. Boston College Eagles

It’s not a bad class for what the Eagles need to do, at least offensively. This might be a defensive-minded program, but the 2017 class is about the offensive side, loading up with quarterback options to throw into the mix right away, a few great running backs, and two good tight ends in Patrick Brown and Hunter Long to help the O keep grinding.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

13. Wake Forest Demon Deacons

It’s always going to be difficult hanging with the ACC elite when it comes to going after the top guys, and Wake Forest doesn’t do it. However, it’s a good class for what it does and what it needs, coming through with a slew of good-looking linebackers and an excellent end in Michael Allen to potentially anchor the pass rush. It’s a creative class full of undersized guys who can run.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

12. Virginia Cavaliers

Head coach Bronco Mendenhall loaded up the offense with plenty of running backs to help a woeful ground game, and a strong group of linemen to build around. There might have been a few good linebackers, and the class as a whole is comparable to previous seasons, but Mendenhall has to start doing more to own the state – or at least a part of it.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

11. Syracuse Orange

Now that he’s had a year to work, did Dino Babers come up with the class to do all the things he’s looking for with his great offensive style? It’s partly up to Tommy DeVito, the quarterback signed on to one day be the statistical superstar who gets to have all the fun with the Babers attack. The O might be for the fireworks, but this team needs the D. The defensive linemen brought in form a good base for the Orange’s future.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

10. Duke Blue Devils

If this isn’t David Cutcliffe’s best class yet at Duke, it’s not all that far off. He and his staff need to boost up the pass defense for the near future, and while this heavy group of defensive backs might not be ready for a while, they’ll get their chances to make an impact early on. There’s a little bit of offense to help the cause, but the goal this year was to help out the other side to hold serve once in a while.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

9. NC State Wolfpack

Can the receivers being brought in perk up an okay class? The linebackers should be the stars on the defensive side if everything works out, the tight ends need to be great and the deep threat wideouts have to be excellent. There’s a little something for all spots with this class, but it’s not the bust out group needed to make a big impact considering the success of several rising ACC teams.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

8. Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

It’s interesting. Paul Johnson signed two kickers to try making an immediate impact in the race to replace Harrison Butker, and there are a few options for the option attack with some nice running backs added to the equation. But it’s the defensive side that gets the big boost, especially in the secondary where Tre Swilling – Pat Swilling’s son – leads a stellar crew. The other son – Bruce Jordan-Swilling – should be the biggest impact player either at linebacker or running back.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

7. Pitt Panthers

You want to help that miserable pass defense, Pitt? Then you bring in a slew of talented defensive backs, starting with Paris Ford, and then keep on going. But the Panthers got the biggest haul for the offensive side, cranking up the receiving corps with Charles Reeves and a few potentially fantastic tight ends to go along with a few very big, very talented wideouts.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

6. North Carolina Tar Heels

It’s more than good enough to keep up the current success. With a slew of offensive linemen coming in, the Tar Heels are boosting up the foundation after going heavier on the defensive side last year. There’s a good group of running backs and receivers to add more flash to the mix, but if the linemen don’t pan out, the class will be a disappointment.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

5. Louisville Cardinals

It’s a really, really good recruiting season for Bobby Petrino, bringing in several fun prospects to help build on the 2016 success. The O line has the upside and talent to keep the high-powered attack going, with JUCO transfer Ronald Rudd potentially helping the cause right away. Add in a great group of receivers, and dangerous back Colin Wilson, and with or without Lamar Jackson, the numbers will still be there. However, the defense is getting its share of help, too, especially in the secondary.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
– 2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

4. Miami Hurricanes

It might not always be the flashiest thing, but getting several great offensive linemen always works as a building block. However, the defensive front is the killer in Mark Richt’s first real class. He cranked up the talent level with a few high-end signings, starting with DE D.J. Johnson and OT Navaughn Donaldson, and keeping it rolling with QB N’Kosi Perry and a whole lot fantastic players from around Florida. This is Richt showing what he can do.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

3. Virginia Tech Hokies

This might turn out to be too low considering all the terrific players Justin Fuente was able to bring in now that he had a full year to work. He’s going to need some help right away for a few spots, but it might take a while to figure out where the right guys need to go. This is a versatile group to play around with, but Fuente brought in plenty of speed and athleticism to do even more to compete with the other ACC big boys. It’s not hyperbole to call this the best Virginia Tech class in many, many years.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

2. Clemson Tigers

It’s a quality over quantity class. It might not be quite as strong as you might think it’d be considering the on-field success over the last two years, but it’s more than good enough to keep the production going. Hunter Johnson is the star of the show, hopefully being a key part of the quarterback derby sooner than later. Throw in Tee Higgins and Amari Rogers, and the Tiger receiving corps is going to keep being excellent for years to come. As always, the defense has its share of future all-stars starting with end Jordan Williams.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown

1. Florida State Seminoles

If nothing else, this year cements Florida State as one of the few places that can legitimately be in the hunt for anyone and everyone it wants, crushing the recruiting season with NFL-caliber talent after NFL-caliber talent, highlighted by National Signing Day gets DT Marvin Wilson and LB Leonard Warner to take things to a while new level. If you like the prototypes, that’s what the Seminoles got with yet another amazing haul of defensive backs – Stanford Samuels will be playing cornerback on Sundays – and a stunning array of outstanding running backs. If Cam Akers isn’t yet another superstar runner for the FSU backfield, consider it a shock.
2017 Recruiting Class Breakdown
2016 Recruiting Class Breakdown