The 2024 college football recruiting class saw the commencement of the Early Signing Period, favoring the traditional powerhouse teams. Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio State secured impressive classes, with the Buckeyes successfully acquiring top recruit Jeremiah Smith amid late drama, a prospect anticipated to be a standout receiver.

These blue-blood programs restocked their rosters, displaying surprises within this cycle. Despite changes like the transfer portal and NIL, recruiting remains a crucial route to building competitive teams. Examining the winners and losers from this Early Signing Day:

Winners: Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio State
These schools have consistently excelled in talent accumulation, maintaining top-5 recruiting classes over the last five years, untouched by alterations in the recruiting landscape.

Georgia secured the No. 1 class, highlighted by flips like five-star safety KJ Bolden from Florida State. Alabama added notable talent, including five-star quarterback Julian Sayin and local stars like Ryan Williams and Jaylen Mbakwe. Ohio State retained Smith and fended off competition for Eddrick Houston.

Losers: Michigan
Despite recent successes, Michigan’s class ranking has decreased, sliding from No. 12 in 2022 to No. 20 in 2024. Their inability to sign a five-star player raises concerns, despite acquiring promising prospects like Jaydn Davis and Jordan Marshall. Off-field issues and uncertainties surrounding Harbaugh’s future compound these challenges.

Winners: Oregon and Texas
Both schools, transitioning to new conferences in 2024, showcased impressive recruiting efforts. Oregon secured consecutive top-10 classes under Dan Lanning, strengthening their roster with transfers like Dillon Gabriel and Dante Moore. Texas, under Steve Sarkisian, landed a second straight top-10 class, enhancing their lineup for SEC play.

Losers: Florida and Florida State
Despite maintaining top-10 classes, both schools faced setbacks. Florida State’s loss of Bolden echoed the Travis Hunter situation from 2022, while Florida witnessed flips and potential losses of elite in-state talent, reflecting challenges in retaining local prospects.

Winner: Syracuse
Fran Brown’s efforts propelled Syracuse’s recruiting class into the top 50, marking a significant rise. Landing KingJoseph Edwards and Jamie Tremble reflects Brown’s strong connections, potentially reshaping Syracuse’s presence in the ACC.

Loser: Colorado
Seaton’s uncertain commitment highlighted Colorado’s struggles, resulting in the lowest-ranked class in the Big 12. While Coach Prime prefers the transfer portal, it’s evident that recruiting challenges may persist for the Buffaloes in the near future.

Winner: Matt Rhule
Rhule’s success in flipping Dylan Raiola to Nebraska signifies a significant addition for the Huskers’ future. Raiola’s commitment could attract further top-tier talent, potentially altering Nebraska’s recruiting trajectory.

Loser: Lincoln Riley
USC’s disappointing on-field performance resulted in a messy situation, with multiple transfers and a slip in the 2024 recruiting class. Riley faces quarterback challenges and must navigate uncertainties with the team’s current roster.

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