After years of preparation and countless phone calls, letters, DMs and visits from coaches across the country, the class of 2019’s top recruits got their first chance to sign a national letter of intent on Wednesday. The day didn't disappoint—Alabama finished at No. 1, Ohio State added some big names to Ryan Day's first class and 128 other schools began to lock down their 2019 rosters on the first day recruits could send in their national letters of intent. Here's a look back at Wednesday's action.
The early signing period runs from Dec. 19 to Dec. 21, by which point the majority of the class of 2019's best players will have made their college destinations official, and for all three days we will be tracking all the action right here on our 2019 National Signing Day live blog.
Below, a look back at which schools closed strong, which players made headlines and all the other memorable moments from a busy day in college football. For more, read Andy Staples's exploration of how the early period has scaled back the circus of signing day to everyone's benefit and Laken Litman's piece on how Alabama restored order after finishing outside of the top spot in the recruiting rankings for the first time since 2010.
5:06 p.m. - Where things stand heading into Day 3
We knew Day 2 of the early signing period would be quiet, with only two top-200 players announcing their commitments on Thursday. It makes sense, really—if you were sure enough of your choice to sign a National Letter of Intent in the early period, why wait until the second day?
The two big commitments on Thursday came from running back Eric Gray, who committed to Tennessee, and William Putnam, who's headed to Clemson. Putnam's commitment saw the Tigers leapfrog Oklahoma and Oregon into the No. 5 spot on 247Sports' class rankings. Here's how the top 10 stands, heading into what should be an even quieter Day 3.
3. Texas A&M
10. Penn State
12. Ohio State
13. Notre Dame
14. Florida State
Reminder that there are a number of players who are still unsigned. The next time players have an opportunity to sign is National Signing Day, which is February 6. Some players will announce their verbal commitments between now and then.
1:50 p.m. - Clemson beats Florida State again, this time for William Putnam
For the second time in two days, Clemson has edged Florida State for a prized four-star recruit. This time, it's Plant (Fla.) offensive lineman William Putnam, who announced his commitment to Clemson on Thursday, opting to join Dabo Swinney's program instead of keeping things in state and playing for the Seminoles.
According to the 247Sports composite ranking, Putnam is the nation's fourth-best offensive guard prospect and No. 78 player overall. He becomes the fourth-highest ranked prospect in the incoming Clemson class. With his commitment, Clemson jumped both Oklahoma and Oregon to move into the No. 5 spot on the 247Sports class rankings.
Putnam's commitment was a bit of a roller coaster ride, as both Auburn and Florida state were considered the favorite to land him at one point. He's likely the final member of this Clemson recruiting class, which now counts 27 signees.
1:06 p.m. - Eric Gray commits to Tennessee
Four-star running back and former Michigan commit Eric Gray announced his commitment to the University of Tennessee. The Lausanne (Tenn.) Collegiate School is the No. 4 all-purpose back in the nation and the number five prospect in the state of Tennessee, according to 247Sports' composite rankings.
Gray is the only running back in this Tennessee class, which entered the day ranked seventh in the SEC and 17th nationally. That's an impressive haul for Jeremy Pruitt's staff, which has now secured the commitment of a five-star (Wanya Morris) and five four-stars despite going 5-7 in its first year at the helm.