ACC Football Recruiting: 2016 Classes That’ll Erupt By 2017

    A couple ACC football teams landed top 25 recruiting classes. Here are three classes that could produce big early on.

    February 11, 2016

    A look at three ACC football recruiting classes that could produce big early on.

    E-mail Rich Cirminiello | Follow me … @RichCirminiello

    Now that National Signing Day has come and gone, the future of college football can more clearly be envisioned. The letters of intent have been faxed, and the speculation for how each recruit will turn out can begin.

    After taking a long, hard look at the recruiting classes and depth charts in the ACC, it’s a little easier to determine which classes will make waves sooner rather than later. 

    3. Miami

    Mark Richt is off and running at his alma mater.

    Working with time constraints and a tight window, Richt assembled a formidable first recruiting class at Miami. One of the headliners of the group is four-star Palmetto (Fla.) High School QB Jack Allison, who’ll be competing for a starting gig in 2017 if Brad Kaaya foregoes his senior season. Whoever winds up lining up behind center will want to develop a rhythm with Sam Bruce, Dionte Mullins and Ahhmon Richards. The eclectic trio of playmakers could form the foundation of the Hurricane passing game for the foreseeable future.

    2. Clemson

    Since the Tigers return a healthy collection of upperclassmen in 2016, 2017 ought to be go time for this latest recruiting class.

    No one in the ACC landed more five-star players than Clemson’s trio of DT Dexter Lawrence and linebackers Rahshaun Smith and Tre Lamar. Yeah, all three should earn reps this fall, but they’ll really take off as sophomores after lineman Carlos Watkins and LB Ben Boulware complete their senior seasons. QB Zerrick Cooper and RB Tavien Feaster chose the defending ACC champs in the hopes of supplanting Deshaun Watson and Wayne Gallman, respectively, as early as a year from now.

    1. Florida State

    New year, same old recruiting dominance for Jimbo Fisher in Tallahassee.

    The Seminoles stockpiled a warchest of four-star recruits, some of which will redshirt this fall. All, however, will get a chance to contribute by their second year on campus, since this program perennially loses players to the NFL. By 2017, Levonta Taylor might already be the young leader of the secondary. And QB Malik Henry and RB Amir Rasul will have a shot to be the cornerstones of the backfield, particularly since Dalvin Cook won’t stick around beyond his junior year. There’ll be plenty of chances to crack the two-deep up front, too, more so if OT Roderick Johnson and NT Derrick Nnadi forego their senior years.

    MORE: ACC Football Schedule 2016: Ranking Every Game


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