National Signing Day wrapped up last week, giving college football junkies an ideal off-season opportunity to talk about the sport.
Unsurprisingly, Power Five programs dominated the top of the recruiting rankings. 24/7 Sports’ composite ranking gives Alabama the edge as the nation’s No. 1 2023 recruiting class, and the reigning national champion Georgia Bulldogs checked in at No. 2.
Texas, Oklahoma, and Ohio State round out the top five of the rankings. While the Power Five programs lead the 24/7 composite rankings, several Group of Five programs put together solid recruiting classes.
Here are the top five 2023 Group of Five recruiting classes, according to the 24/7 composite rankings.
1. UTSA (60th overall)
After a stellar few seasons, UTSA looks primed to become one of the best Group of Five programs in the country as it moves into the AAC. UTSA signed 21 members to its 2023 class, according to 24/7 Sports.
The highest-rated recruit in the class is offensive tackle Daniel Ogundipe. The four-star prospect is listed at 6-feet-5-inches tall and 285 lbs. He went to JUCO in Iowa but played high school in the Philadelphia area, and he was a highly coveted prospect in this recruiting cycle. UTSA beat out App State, East Carolina, and Tulane, among others, for Ogundipe’s commitment.
UTSA did well to recruit Texas, adding several 3-star prospects from within the state. If the Roadrunners continue to recruit effectively in state, they’ll be a tough out for years to come.
2. Memphis (62nd overall)
The Tigers recruited the defensive side of the ball particularly well, as four of their top five prospects are defensive players. The team’s highest-rated recruit is four-star cornerback MarJayvious Moss, a Louisiana prospect who also drew notable interest from Baylor and Minnesota.
Memphis wasn’t great in 2022 – going 7-6 – but the Tigers should become an AAC title threat given the departures of Cincinnati, Houston, and UCF. The conference weakened with their departure, leaving Memphis as a likely candidate to see increased win totals over the next decade.
3. Boise State (68th overall)
Boise State always seems to put itself toward the top of the Group of Five. The Broncos recruit well, and they develop talent about as well as any Group of Five program.
Boise State’s 2023 recruiting class is solid, ranking as the best group in the Mountain West Conference. Interestingly, the team’s two highest-rated recruits running back (Jambres Dubar) and quarterback (CJ Tiller) could become backfield mates in future seasons.
Perhaps the program’s most impressive recruiting trait is the ability to go across the country for talent. Boise State’s recruiting class heavily utilizes Idaho and California connections, but the program also has success recruiting states like Texas.
4. Colorado State (69th overall)
The Rams were terrible in 2022, going 3-9, so this recruiting class should bring a smile to the faces of Colorado State supporters. While the average recruiting ranking for the program won’t match some Group of Five peers, the program added 30 solid players in its 2023 class, giving it a top composite ranking.
Jay Norvell and staff recruited seemingly every state across the western United States, seeking talent upgrades at just about every position. The Rams need significant improvements to find long-term success, and while this recruiting class won’t guarantee a special 2023 season, the program hopes it’s moving toward solid footing under Norvell.
5. SMU (70th overall)
Another AAC program likely to be thrust into the Group of Five spotlight more consistently, SMU thrives on recruiting in-state talent. The team’s freshman class is primarily from Texas, and given the talent in the state, it makes sense that the Mustangs recruited close to home.
It’s worth noting that SMU also added significant talent via the transfer portal, and the Mustangs should enter 2023 as one of the favorites in the AAC.
Bennett Conlin is a college football contributor for HERO Sports, and he works full-time covering sports betting industry news and legislation for Sports Handle and US Bets.