2021 College Football Teams Recruiting Best Offensive Players
Tom VanHaaren
Posted: 2021-02-17

The 2021 recruiting cycle is mostly finished with all but three ESPN 300 prospects committed. The player rankings are subjective, but they give us a good look at what these college football programs could be adding to their roster.

The class rankings give us a look at the totality of a class and which classes outperformed others overall. To dissect those classes even further, we looked at which programs recruited each position the best.

For this exercise, we are not looking at transfers, only high school prospects and what each team is adding at each position.

We will start by analyzing the offense and look at the defense in another post to be published later this week. Here is a position-by-position look at which teams signed the best offensive haul of prospects for this cycle.

Quarterback

USC Trojans

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Jaxson Dart
ESPN 300 Miller Moss

Dart is the No. 19-ranked prospect overall, and Miller is ranked at No. 39. Quarterback was a huge need for the Trojans, so landing two top-50 prospects is a big deal for this future roster.

The staff lost a commitment from Bryce Young, the No. 1-ranked dual-threat quarterback in the 2020 class, so quarterback was a big emphasis. Kedon Slovis and Matt Fink were the only options at quarterback, and Slovis might have a chance to go to the NFL after this next season.

Now with Dart and Moss, USC is doubling its quarterback room and adding two excellent options once Slovis moves on.

Washington Huskies

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Sam Huard

You have to mention Washington, because the coaches signed the top overall quarterback in the class in Huard. He's the No. 15 recruit overall and was just outside the five-star range, so this is a huge addition to the roster for the Huskies.

Huard is going to have a chance to compete for the starting spot right away with Dylan Morris, who threw for 897 yards and four touchdowns, completing 60.91% of his passes in 2020.

Oklahoma Sooners

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Caleb Williams

You also have to mention Oklahoma in this category, because the Sooners signed Williams, who is the No. 1 dual-threat quarterback in the class.

Lincoln Riley's success at quarterback is well documented, and Williams fits in perfectly with this offense. Outside of Williams' ability and talent, the most promising aspect of this signing is that in the past Riley had been relying on transfer quarterbacks. Now, with current starter Spencer Rattler, who Oklahoma recruited out of high school, the coaches will be able to develop Williams and keep consistency at the position within the program.

Running back

Ohio State Buckeyes

Who they signed
ESPN 300 TreVeyon Henderson
ESPN 300 Evan Pryor

Ohio State got the No. 1 running back in the class with Henderson, who is a five-star prospect, and the No. 7 back in Pryor. The Buckeyes had a need at the position and were able to fill it with some solid options.

Henderson has a combination of speed and size, and he should be able to immediately help on a roster that's losing leading rusher Trey Sermon, but returning Master Teague, who was second on the team in rushing yards. Outside of Teague, there isn't much experience or production, so these two backs have a good opportunity to help quickly.

Clemson Tigers

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Will Shipley
ESPN 300 Phil Mafah

Shipley is the No. 2 back in the class and Mafah is the No. 13 running back overall. Shipley is one of the more intriguing prospects in this class with how fast he is and how he might be able to contribute to Clemson's offense.

He should be able to help in the run game and pass game, and he is going to help fill a big hole left by starter Travis Etienne, who is off to the NFL. Clemson has Lyn-J Dixon and Chez Mellusi, but Shipley's speed and ability will make it difficult to keep him off the field.

Oregon Ducks

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Seven McGee
ESPN 300 Byron Cardwell

McGee is ranked No. 134 overall and Cardwell is the No. 167 recruit in the class. Oregon has done a great job of building a foundation of young players on defense and in this 2021 cycle, the staff has added some excellent offensive prospects to balance out the roster.

The running back room already has Travis Dye and CJ Verdell, who were the top two rushers from last season, but adding in more options is only a positive, especially because both Dye and Verdell will be seniors this upcoming season.

Wide receiver

Oklahoma Sooners

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Mario Williams Jr.
ESPN 300 Billy Bowman Jr.
ESPN 300 Jalil Farooq
ESPN 300 Cody Jackson

It's no surprise Oklahoma is on the list of top receivers -- the staff has had a lot of success at the position over the past few recruiting classes. Williams is the No. 1 receiver in the class, and it's the second time Oklahoma has signed the top receiver in the past three classes after signing Jadon Haselwood in 2019.

All four of the receivers in this class are inside the top 150 and two are in the top 100 with Williams being the highest ranked at No. 17 overall.

There is no shortage of receivers on the roster, especially as we saw freshman Marvin Mims lead the team in receiving yards and touchdowns this past season for the Sooners, but it can't hurt to keep adding this type of talent to the offense.

Alabama Crimson Tide

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Agiye Hall
ESPN 300 Jacorey Brooks
ESPN 300 JoJo Earle
ESPN 300 Christian Leary

Three of Alabama's top four players in receiving yards are going to be off the roster next season, with DeVonta Smith, Jaylen Waddle and Najee Harris all off to the NFL.

The staff has reeled in four ESPN 300 receivers in this class to try to replace that production. Hall is the most highly rated at No. 34 overall, followed by Brooks at No. 52, Earle at No. 73 and Leary at No. 77 overall. Nick Saban and his staff adding four ESPN 300 receivers is one thing, but to get four ranked inside the top 80 is incredible.

Oregon Ducks

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Isaiah Brevard
ESPN 300 Troy Franklin
ESPN 300 Don't'e Thornton

Similar to the running back position listed above, Oregon did a great job bringing in playmakers to help with coordinator Joe Moorhead's offense.

Not only did the Ducks sign three receivers ranked in the ESPN 300, but they're adding a variety of receivers to help across the board. Franklin is 6-foot-1, 175 pounds, while Thornton is 6-foot-5, 185 pounds. The coaches are returning most of the starters on offense, so they won't need these recruits to play early and can get them settled and developed before throwing them on the field.

Tight end

Florida Gators

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Gage Wilcox
ESPN 300 Nick Elksnis

This post isn't including transfers, but it would be difficult not to at least note that Florida is bringing in former five-star tight end Arik Gilbert, who transferred from LSU. That is significant, but didn't factor in to listing the Gators here.

The staff has two ESPN 300 tight ends in the class, and after the success of Kyle Pitts this past season, there should be no shortage of top tight ends flocking to Florida in the future. Wilcox is the No. 256 ranked recruit and Elksnis is No. 284.

Nebraska Cornhuskers

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Thomas Fidone Jr.
Three-star James Carnie
Three-star A.J. Rollins

The Huskers signed Fidone, who is the No. 271 ranked recruit overall, and a 6-foot-5, 210-pound tight end. He was a big win for Nebraska, as quite a few big-name teams were after him.

Adding in two three-stars in Carnie and Rollins is icing on the cake. The size of all three prospects is notable as not one of them is under 6-foot-5, with Rollins listed at 6-foot-6, 220 pounds.

Offensive line

Alabama Crimson Tide


Who they signed
ESPN 300 Tommy Brockermeyer
ESPN 300 J.C. Latham
ESPN 300 Terrence Ferguson
ESPN 300 Jaeden Roberts
ESPN 300 James Brockermeyer

This haul along the offensive line was incredible, even to Alabama's standards. Tommy Brockermeyer and Latham are both five-star prospects and the No. 1 and 2 ranked tackles in this class.

Roberts was committed to Auburn, but he flipped late in the process after Gus Malzahn's firing. There are three tackles and two interior linemen in this class, and all five rank in the top 100. Adding in that much elite talent in one class along the line speaks to what Nick Saban and his staff did in this class.

Georgia Bulldogs

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Amarius Mims
ESPN 300 Micah Morris
ESPN 300 Dylan Fairchild
ESPN 300 Jared Wilson

In any other class, Georgia would be getting a lot more attention for what the staff added. It's the fifth class in a row Georgia has finished the recruiting cycle with a top-three class.

Adding in four ESPN 300 offensive linemen is no small feat, and it's led by the No. 3 ranked tackle in Mims, who is the No. 20 prospect overall. All four are ranked in the top 200 and two are in the top 100.

Clemson Tigers

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Tristan Leigh
ESPN 300 Marcus Tate
ESPN 300 Dietrick Pennington
ESPN 300 Ryan Linthicum

You can categorize Clemson the same as Georgia, in that any other year everyone would have been talking about this offensive line. Leigh is the No. 4 tackle in the class, ranked No. 24 overall, and he is the third-highest ranked commit in the class.

Overall, all four offensive linemen are ranked in the top 225, and they are going to help keep line play a strength at Clemson.

Oregon Ducks

Who they signed
ESPN 300 Kingsley Suamataia
ESPN 300 Bram Walden
ESPN 300 Jonah Miller
ESPN 300 Jackson Light

Normally we wouldn't include this many teams in one positional category, but considering that so many teams had four or five ESPN 300 commitments, it felt prudent to include this many on the list.

Oregon deserves to be here with four in the top 300 and Suamataia as the highest ranked at No. 97 overall. Suamataia and Light are both from Utah, and Walden and Miller are both from Arizona, so the staff was able to tap into a few different states to bring these four into the roster.



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