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Ranking nation's top 10 receiving corps

Updated: August 2, 2012, 12:03 PM ET
By Travis Haney

Oklahoma State's Justin Blackmon became the second two-time winner of the Biletnikoff Award in December, and Oklahoma's Ryan Broyles was a repeat finalist. Who, then, will emerge as the new class of top-flight receivers?

There are candidates, literally, from coast to coast, each enhancing the productivity of his team's offense.

Here's a look at the nation's best receiver groups, led by the key receiver we think has a good shot at a 1,000-yard season (some have already logged them).

Important note to remember: It's often the second and third receivers that can separate an offense and help that No. 1 receiver get open more frequently.

1. USC Trojans

Key receivers: Marqise Lee, Robert Woods

The Trojans were atop our list of the country's best running games on Monday. Well, with Matt Barkley and a pair of All-Americans at receiver, they throw it better than they run it. That's among the reasons why they're a preseason favorite in many pundits' minds.

Woods had a strong freshman year, catching 65 passes for 792 yards, when he was joined last season by Lee to provide Barkley with essentially two No. 1s. The combined damage the two inflicted on defenses last season: 184 catches, 2,435 yards and 26 touchdowns. Each surpassed 1,000 yards. Neither Woods (6-foot-1, 190 pounds) nor Lee (6-foot, 195 pounds) is beastly, but they're subtly strong and they have knacks for getting open regardless of the coverage they're facing.

Coach Lane Kiffin is like you; he marvels at the ability of Woods and Lee, but he wonders what's beyond them, in terms of depth. That's something of a recurring theme in Kiffin's mind, given USC's scholarship-depleted roster.

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