PSU holds off Michigan for No. 1 spot

Here is a team by team breakdown of the Big Ten.


1. Penn State Nittany Lions

The Nittany Lions didn't close well down the stretch, but still managed to sign the top class in the conference. Joe Paterno's class features six ESPNU 150 prospects, including four on the defensive side of the ball led by Khairi Fortt (Stamford, Conn./Stamford) who is a nice addition to Linebacker U. The defensive line also scored big with defensive end Dakota Royer (Manheim, Pa./Central), who is simply an excellent football player. Space-eating defensive tackle Evan Hailes (Chesapeake, Va./Oscar Frommel Smith) and defensive end C.J. Olaniyan (Warren, Mich./Warren-Mott) have a lot of upside. On offense, quarterback Robert Bolden (Orchard Lake, Mich./Saint Mary's Prep) could contend for early playing time and RB Silas Redd (Stamford, Conn./The King and Low Heywood) is a well-rounded back.


2. Michigan Wolverines

Michigan has not created a lot of buzz on the recruiting trail, but Rich Rodriguez quietly put together a top-15 class and opened up some eyes on signing day by landing one of the top safeties in five-star Demar Dorsey (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Boyd Anderson). Michigan needed to put an emphasis on the defensive side of the ball, particularly the back seven, and did with several key prospects coming in led by the athletic outside linebacker Marvin Robinson (Winter Haven, Fla./Lake Region). On offense, the Wolverines are still going after quarterbacks who fit their system and signed a good one in Devin Gardner (Inkster, Mich./Inkster), who is one of the better dual-threat quarterback prospects in the country. Also, don't underestimate special teams; Will Hagerrup (Whitefish Bay, Wis./Whitefish Bay) is one of the best punters in the country and should be a good replacement for Zoltan Mesko.