The creation of college football’s early signing day has led to most of the elite prospects putting pen to paper on their letters of intent in December, which allows for coaching staffs work to get their recruiting class locked in and start working on next year’s recruits.
But there’s still major battles for elite players being waged ahead of February’s traditional signing day in and beyond. A handful of the country’s best players still haven’t signed with a school, and many of those are expected to announce their decisions Wednesday.
Here’s a breakdown of some of the top remaining recruiting battles in the 2020 class.
Hammond School (Columbia, South Carolina)
Defensive end / 6-foot-5 / 250 pounds
No. 2 prospect in the Chosen 25
Considering: South Carolina, LSU
Burch gave a verbal pledge to his home-state Gamecocks on Dec. 18 but didn’t sign a letter of intent — which left the door open for national champs LSU and Ed Orgeron to make a final recruiting push in January. Burch unofficially visited LSU on Jan. 25, and followed that with an official visit to South Carolina last week. He is scheduled to announce his final decision at 1 p.m. Eastern Time on ESPNU.
North Shore (Houston, Texas)
Running back / 6-0 / 200
No. 6 in Chosen 25
Considering: Ole Miss, Tennessee, Texas A&M
Evans’ recruitment may not end this week. He originally signed with Georgia in December, but the Bulldogs allowed him to be released from his letter of intent. Due to NCAA rules, that means Evans can’t sign another letter of intent Wednesday and will have to wait until the spring to formalize a decision. Ole Miss, Tennessee and Texas A&M are all in the picture, but more schools will likely join the fray as college rosters take shape in the spring.
Deland (Deland, Florida)
Safety / 5-11 / 170
No. 93 per 247Sports; No. 40 per Rivals
Considering: Florida, Miami (Fla.)
Most buzz has Williams trending toward the Gators, whom he officially visited the weekend of Jan. 24. But he also officially visited Miami the weekend of Jan. 17. Williams originally committed to the Hurricanes before his sophomore year. He then opened things back up, committed to Oregon and re-opened his recruitment again on Dec. 11. He is set to announce his decision at 12:30 p.m. ET Wednesday.
George County (Lucedale, Mississippi)
Defensive tackle / 6-2 / 330
No. 61 per 247Sports; No. 72 per Rivals
Considering: Texas A&M, Alabama, Auburn, LSU
Texas A&M received Jackson’s final official visit last weekend. The week prior, he took an official trip to LSU. But, despite his recent visits, Alabama appears to be in a strong position heading into Wednesday. He is scheduled to announce his decision Wednesday morning.
Cedar Creek (Bastrop, Texas)
Defensive end / 6-5 / 285
No. 32 per 247Sports; No. 146 per Rivals
Considering: Texas, Oklahoma, Alabama
While the Longhorns are considered the favorites for Collins, the son of former Texas women’s basketball player Benita Pollard, Oklahoma and Alabama have done enough to keep this from being a slam dunk for Texas entering signing day. Collins is scheduled to announce his decision at 4:50 p.m. ET Wednesday.
Manor (Manor, Texas)
Defensive end / 6-4 / 250
No. 324 per 247Sports
Considering: Florida, Baylor, Texas, Auburn
Umanmielen has had a busy past couple weeks, taking official visits to Florida, Texas and Auburn. He originally committed to Texas last August, but he reopened his recruitment in late October. New Baylor head coach Dave Aranda has made a push to get the Bears back in good position following the coaching change. Umanmielen is set to announce his decision at 3:20 p.m. ET on ESPNU.
Venice (Venice, Florida)
Receiver / 6-4 / 190
No. 116 per 247Sports; No. 56 per Rivals
Considering: Florida State, Tennessee, Ole Miss, Oregon
Wideman has been verbally committed to Florida State since May, but he took official visits to Tennessee, Oregon and Ole Miss the last three weeks of January. He is expected to announce his final decision Wednesday afternoon.
Duncanville (Duncanville, Texas)
Cornerback / 6-0 / 170
No. 811 per 247Sports
Considering: Texas, Alabama, Missouri
Rakestraw’s recruiting stock blew up in the weeks after December’s signing day, tacking on offers from Texas, Alabama, Georgia, Baylor, Ole Miss and many more in late December and January. In the end, Texas, Alabama and Missouri are the main contenders. He took official visits to all three in the final three weeks of January, finishing the month off with the Longhorns. He is set to announce his decision Wednesday morning.
Michael Drennen II
Dublin Coffman (Dublin, Ohio)
Athlete / 5-11 / 190
No. 342 per 247Sports; No. 210 per Rivals
Considering: Kentucky, Southern Calfiornia
Things are looking good for the Wildcats, who were likely helped by associate head coach Vince Marrow, Drennen’s main recruiter, not becoming the head coach at Youngstown State. Still, USC has recruited Drennen hard since offering him in September, and it hosted him for an official visit in early December.