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Wednesday, October 9, 2013
ACC class rankings analysis

By Gerry Hamilton



Each Wednesday, ESPN RecruitingNation updates its national class rankings. For an in-depth look at the ACC, check out our conference rankings:

1. Florida State, 24 commits: The Seminoles have the top class in the ACC and the No. 2 class nationally. The class includes 10 ESPN300 prospects, including a trio of linebackers Kain Duab (Jackonsville, Fla./Sandalwood High), Jacob Pugh (Tallahassee, Fla./Godby High) and Delvin Purifoy (Pensacola, Fla./Pensacola Catholic High). The Semionles could close with a bang with up to 31 or 32 possible in the class. No. 6 Adoree’ Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Junipero Serra High), No. 13 Tony Brown (Beaumont, Texas/Ozen High), No. 22 Damian Prince (Forestville, Md./Bishop McNamara High), No. 28 and Florida commit Ermon Lane (Homestead, Fla./Homestead High) and a number of others make up the wish list.

2. Miami, 25 commits: The Hurricanes are sitting at No. 4 nationally with a class that features 11 ESPN300 prospects, including No. 21 Joseph Yearby (Miami/Central High) and No. 45 Kc McDermott (Wellington, Fla./Palm Beach Central High). At the top of the remaining wish list is No. 42 Johnnie Dixon (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla./Dwyer High) and No. 65 Travis Rudolph (West Palm Beach, Fla./Cardinal Newman High) at wide receiver, while the Hurricanes are also in the hunt for Florida commitment and No. 73 overall J.C. Jackson (Immokalee, Fla./Imokalee High).

3. Clemson, 16 commits: Clemson is putting together another solid class, currently ranked No. 13 nationally led by No. 1 dual-threat quarterback Deshaun Watson (Gainesville, Ga./Gainesville High) and an impressive group of offensive skill players. The Tigers are looking to put a bow on the class on defense with top targets No. 14 Raekwon McMillan (Hinesville, Ga./Liberty County High), No. 27 Lorenzo Featherston (Greensboro, N.C./Page High) and others still high on the board. The Tigers have eight ESPN300 prospects committed.

4. North Carolina, 21 commits: The Tar Heels are holding steady in the national class rankings at No. 20 with a class headlined by a trio of ESPN300 prospects, including running back Elijah Hood (Charlotte, N.C./Catholic High). Among the top targets remaining is No. 27 overall Lorenzo Featherston (Greensboro, N.C./Page High).

5. Virginia, 10 commits: The Cavaliers have the smallest class among nationally ranked classes, but No. 5 overall Andrew Brown (Chesapeake, Va./Oscar Frommel Smith High) and No. 10 Quinn Blanding (Virginia Beach, Va./Bayside High) are two of the very best in the country. ESPN300 wide receiver Jamil Kamara (Virginia Beach, Va./Bishop Sullivan Catholic) is among the top remaining prospects on the board.

6. Virginia Tech, 21 commits: The Hokies currently sit at No. 28 in the RecruitingNation class rankings with ESPN300 athlete Ja’Von Harrison (Lakeland, Fla./Kathleen High) and four-star defensive tackle Ricky Walker (Hampton, Va./Bethel High) the headliners. ESPN300 linebacker Brandon Lee (Indianapolis, In./Lawrence Central High) is one of the top remaining targets, and he will visit Blacksburg Oct. 25. Running back Shai McKenzie (Washington, Pa./Washington High) is another.

7. NC State, 23 commits: The Wolfpack check in at No. 32 nationally with a class that features four-star quarterback Jalan McClendon (Charlotte, N.C./West Mecklenburg High) and defensive tackle Justin Jones (Austell, Ga./South Cobb High). Among the top targets remaining for N.C. State is No. 27 Lorenzo Featherston (Greensboro, N.C./Page High), No. 33 Kentavius Street (Greenville, N.C./Rose High), and No. 43 Johnnie Dixon (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla./Dwyer High).

8. Boston College, 22 commits: The Eagles currently rank No. 34 in the class rankings nationally led by four-star inside linebacker Connor Strachan (Wellesley, Ma./Saint Sebastians County High) and defensive end Harold Landry (Fayetteville, N.C./Pine Forest High). The Eagles would to land ESPN300 defensive end Kurt Holuba (Oradell, N.J./Bergen Catholic High) with defensive line being a major need remaining.

9. Duke, 15 commits: The Blue Devils’ class of 15 features ESPN300 quarterback Nicodem Pierre (Miami, Fla./Coral Reef High) along with four-star prospects Zavier Carmichael (Mobile, Al./Saint Paul’s Episcopal High) and Shaun Wilson (Charlotte, N.C./West Mecklenburg High). Duke remains in the hunt for four-star wide receiver Trevon Lee (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Cardinal Gibbons High) and others.

10. Georgia Tech, 18 commits: The Yellow Jackets have a solid group of 18 committed led by four-star cornerback Stepheny Durham IV (Jacksonville, Fla./Atlantic Coast High) and linebackers Terrell Lewis (Ocoee, Fla./Ocoee High) and KeShun Freeman (Hogansville, Ga./Callaway High). The quick and elusive Donquell Green (Waynesboro, Ga./Wayne County) is one of the top remaining skill prospects on the board.

11. Maryland, 13 commits: While the Terrapins currently sit outside the top 40 classes nationally, Maryland is a program with a good shot to ascend. Currently, the class features ESPN300 defensive end Jesse Aniebonam (Olney, Md./Our Lady of Good Counsel High) and three more four-star prospects, but it’s the targets remaining that are of note. No. 17 overall Jalen Tabor (Washington, DC/Friendship Collegiate Academy) and No. 22 Damian Prince (Forestville, Md./Bishop McNamara High) could both end up staying home.

12. Pittsburgh, 18 commits: The Panthers struck early at quarterback landing commitments from Wade Freebeck (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Saint Thomas Aquinas High) and Adam Bertke (Maria Stein, Oh./Marion Local High). ESPN 300 prospects Montae Nicholson (Monroeville, Pa./Gateway High) and Jamil Kamara (Virginia Beach, Va./Bishop Sullivan Catholic High) are two of the top prospects still on the board.

13. Syracuse, 13 commits: Syracuse has four-star QB A.J. Long (Lebanon, Tn./Friendship Christian School) as the headliner of a class that includes three linebackers. The Orange would love to keep No. 86 overall Thomas Holley (Brooklyn, N.Y./Lincoln High) close to home, but are fighting an uphill battle.

14. Wake Forest, 10 commits: The Demon Deacons currently have 10 commitments from five states led by outside linebacker Jaboree’ Williams (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Fort Lauderdale High). Wake Forest would love to pull defensive tackle Edgar Cerenord (Plantation, Fla./American Heritage High) out of the Sunshine State as well.