Rich Rodriguez, Brady Hoke making major recruiting moves

Publish date:

1. Texas and Alabama's battle for the top recruiting class intensified this week. The Longhorns -- currently No. 1 -- landed verbals from two touted JUCO prospects on Wednesday, Northwest Mississippi Community College offensive tackle Donald Hawkins and East Mississippi Community College defensive tackle Brandon Moore. Mack Brown and Co. are up to 23 commitments in the class of 2012, led by local five-stars running back Johnathan Gray and defensive tackle Malcom Brown. Alabama also received good news, as Bastrop (La.) four-star linebacker Denzel Devall committed to the Crimson Tide. Nick Saban's class stands at 21 recruits, including athlete Eddie Williams and wide receiver Chris Black.

2. Rich Rodriguez is making a play at another coveted dual-threat quarterback. The new Arizona coach has thrived with mobile quarterbacks in the past -- including Pat White and Denard Robinson -- so it comes as no surprise that one of his first offers went to Old Tappan (N.J.) signal-caller Devin Fuller. The electric Fuller tallied 3,573 all-purpose yards (2,247 passing, 1,326 rushing) and 37 touchdowns as a senior, and said that he could visit Tucson in the coming weeks. To this point, the front-runners remain Rutgers and Nebraska, and Fuller will take an official visit to TCU this weekend.

3. Michigan continues to make recruiting strides under first-year coach Brady Hoke. The Wolverines landed their 24th commitment on Sunday, adding Dowling Catholic (Iowa) wideout Amara Darboh. The 6-foot-2, 205-pounder chose the Wolverines over Florida, Iowa, Notre Dame and Wisconsin, among others, and provides Hoke with 13 four-stars in his initial Ann Arbor class. Michigan could add up to four more before the recruiting cycle officially ends.

4. Berkeley is this week's recruiting hot spot. Cal will host approximately 20 top prospects for official visits, including the nation's top overall recruit, two-way tackle Arik Armstead. Among the others: Grant Union (Calif.) safety Shaq Thompson, Oaks Christian (Calif.) teammates Ishmael Adams and Jordan Payton, Florida State tight end commit Christo Kourtzidis and wide receiver Bryce Treggs, a four-star Cal commit also considering Notre Dame. To date, the Golden Bears have 10 verbal pledges in their 2012 haul.

5. Ohio State will host a bevy of prospects as well. Looking to make a splash just weeks after his hire, Meyer looks to impress running back Bri'onte Dunn, offensive tackle Jordan Diamond, defensive tackle Tommy Schutt and offensive tackle Kyle Dodson during their visits to Columbus this weekend. Schutt and Dodson are currently committed to Penn State and Wisconsin, respectively.

• Florida and Notre Dame are making moves. The Gators will host Darius Hamilton, Nelson Agholor and Josh Clemons this weekend, while the Irish will entertain Gunner Kiel, Davonte Neal, Joshua Garnett and Ronnie Stanley. Florida, in particular, could enter this year's recruiting top tier with several high-profile additions.

• Hueytown's (Ala.) Jameis Winston may be rethinking his decision. The nation's top-ranked quarterback committed to Florida State in early August, but recently took an official to Alabama and announced future visits to Auburn, Ohio State and Stanford. He did, however, add that his final visit will go to the Seminoles.

• For a second consecutive year, Georgia landed the nation's top tailback. After locking up Isaiah Crowell last National Signing Day, the Bulldogs secured Millbrook's (N.C.) Keith Marshall on Tuesday. With 4.3 40 speed, he could serve as the lightning to Crowell's thunder.

• The nation's highest-ranked cornerback, Don Bosco Prep's (N.J.) Yuri Wright, will make his first official visit to Colorado. He'll also travel to Notre Dame on Dec. 16, and has a tentative visit scheduled to Michigan on Jan. 13. Other schools in the running for Wright include California, Georgia, Rutgers and USC.

• Petal (Miss.) signal-caller Anthony Alford has announced his top five: LSU, Mississippi, Mississippi State, Nebraska and Southern Miss. The nation's second-ranked dual-threat quarterback took an official visit to Lincoln on Nov. 5.