Ohio State, Michigan lead Big Ten recruiting class rankings


Ohio State, Michigan lead Big Ten recruiting class rankings

The Big 10 continues to chase the SEC in the all-important and never-ending recruiting sweepstakes. But new coaching regimes suggest that Ohio State and Michigan are making a determined bid to close the gap.

In the old days, football recruiting in the Big 10 was known as Ohio State, Michigan and the eight dwarfs. They were the first schools in the conference to recruit on a national scale and the others fell woefully behind. The Ohio StateMichigan rivalry got bigger and bigger.

Penn State and Nebraska, two perennial national powers before they joined the Big 10, boosted the conference's reputation. And, as other schools looked at the map and discovered how to travel to Florida, Texas, California and other warmer climates where high school football is king, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan State and Illinois began to make statements.

So what happened? Ohio State and Michigan are a solid 1-2 in Big 10 recruiting this season but no other school is even in the conversation. As usual, the SEC is dominating the recruiting sweepstakes and the Pac-12, Big 12 and even the basketball-happy ACC are putting the Big 10 to shame.

How about this statistic?

Ohio State has signed six while Michigan has four of the nation's top 100 players in the class of 2012, according to recruiting analyst Tom Lemming of CBS College Sports. Wisconsin has two, Nebraska and Minnesota one each.

"The SEC dominates recruiting because they offer more scholarships and they pay their assistant coaches so they attract the best recruiters in the nation," Lemming said. "Until the Big 10 starts to be competitive in the salary market with the SEC, it will continue to fall behind."

But there is no doubt that new coaches Urban Meyer of Ohio State and Brady Hoke of Michigan are having an immediate impact in national recruiting and will force rival coaches in the Big 10 to pick up the pace or look for other work.

"Urban Meyer has turned everything around at Ohio State. His impact is almost immeasurable," Lemming said. "Ohio State was dead in the water recruiting-wise because of the (Jim Tressel) scandal. Now they have one of the top five recruiting classes in the nation. There is no other reason besides Meyer. He has breathed life into a dead program, one that was waiting for the NCAA hammer to fall.

"Meyer's name precedes him. His accomplishments precede him. Then he has an aggressive personality and a relentless style of recruiting. He and (Alabama coach) Nick Saban have a relentless style of recruiting. It is no mystery why they win. Remember, recruiting is more important than coaching in college. Average coaches can win with great players. And good coaches that recruit great players win national championships."

Lemming said Brady Hoke learned a lot from former Michigan coach Lloyd Carr, his mentor. "He doesn't have Urban Meyer's name or his resume but he has the same work ethic and aggressiveness. He understands that to be successful at the college level you have to work hard and have a hard-working staff," Lemming said.

It will take longer for Tim Beckman, Illinois' new coach, to have an impact on the recruiting scene. He hasn't had time to establish his identity and his name didn't precede him to Illinois like Urban Meyer at Ohio State. In fact, he already is working hard to establish strong ties with members of the highly touted class of 2013.

"A year from now, you will know if he has the ability to recruit at the
Big 10 level," Lemming said. "He didn't have enough time to recruit when he got to Illinois. Most Illinois kids were gone. And St. Louis and Indianapolis, too. He didn't have many places to turn to. His 2012 class won't be reflective on how well he will do in the future."

Lemming rates Ohio State's 2012 class over Michigan. But he admits it is a matter of comparing apples and oranges. Some recruiting services give Michigan an edge. Lemming argues that Ohio State has more blue-chip prospects (four of the top 50 while Michigan has no one in the top 50.

Here is a look at the Big 10 recruiting classes:

1. OHIO STATE: The centerpiece of Urban Meyer's first class is DL Noah Spence, the No. 3 player in the nation. He also landed OL J.J. Denman, who de-committed from Wisconsin. And Meyer wooed DL Tommy Schutt of Glenbard West and DB Armani Reeves away from Penn State.

2. MICHIGAN: The Wolverines' top signee is DE Chris Wormley, who was defensive player of the year in Ohio. Coach Brady Hoke stayed close to home, signing 18 of his 25 recruits from Michigan and Ohio. He was pleasantly surprised to land RBKR Dennis Norfleet of Detroit at the last minute.

3. PURDUE: Remember when Purdue used to recruit heavily in the Chicago area, like Notre Dame. No longer. Coach Danny Hope signed 25 players from 12 states, including six from Florida and three from Texas. Top-rated recruits are DE Ryan Watson and OL Carlos Carvajal.

4. IOWA: Coach Kirk Ferentz went to Erie, Pennsylvania, to sign a top 100 player in RB Greg Garmon. He also did well in Illinois, getting DL Faith Ekakitie of Lake Forest Academy, OL Ryan Ward of Providence, DB Maurice Fleming of Curie, DL Jaleel Johnson of Montini and OL Mitch Keppy of Port Byron Riverdale.

5. NEBRASKA: Coach Bo Pelini scored a coup when he persuaded WR Jordan Westerkamp of Montini to honor his earlier pledge and not accept Notre Dame's tempting offer. Other standouts are DB Mohammed Selsay, OL Paul Thurston, DE Greg McMullen, LB Zaire Anderson and OT Vincent Valentine from Edwardsville.
6. MINNESOTA: The Gophers managed to keep the state's top prospect at home -- QB Philip Nelson of Mankato, who ranks as the No. 40 player in the nation. The Gophers also got LB Jack Lynn of Lake Zurich, WR Andre McDonald, WR Jamel Harbison, OL Isaac Hayes and OL Johan Pirsig.

7. MICHIGAN STATE: The Spartans got one of the best prospects in Michigan in WR Aaron Burbridge but they had more success in Ohio, Florida and Georgia. Coach Mark Dantonio is especially pleased with defensive backs Ezra Robinson, Demetrious Cox, Mark Meyers and Jermaine Edmondson.

8. NORTHWESTERN: One of coach Pat Fitzgerald's best signees is RB Malin Jones of Joliet Catholic. But DT Greg Kuhar and DE Ifeadi Odenigbo also draw rave reviews from recruiting services. Fitzgerald also got DE Dean Lowry from Rockford Boylan and WR Kyle Prater of Proviso West, a transfer from USC who was one of the nation's top-rated players in 2010.

9. WISCONSIN: The Badgers signed two top 100 players -- LB Vince Biegel of Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., and QB Bart Houston of Concord, Calif. But they lost two of their top recruits -- OL J.J. Denman to Rutgers and OL Kyle Dodson to Ohio State. They also got OL Dan Voltz of Barrington.

10. PENN STATE: Despite the death of legendary coach Joe Paterno and the sex-abuse scandal involving former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky, new coach Bill O'Brien and his staff did better than anticipated. They lost DL Tommy Schutt, LB Camren Williams and DB Armani Reeves to Ohio State. But they signed 19 players, including DT Jamil Pollard and WR Eugene Lewis.
11. INDIANA: The Hoosiers lost one of their top recruits, LB Mike Cotton of O'Fallon, Ill., to Northern Illinois. But they got three Illinois products -- RB Tevin Coleman of Oak Forest, OL Dan Feeney of Sandburg and LB Nick Mangieri of Dunlap.

12. ILLINOIS: Outgoing coach Ron Zook left the cupboard practically empty and incoming coach Tim Beckman will have trouble filling it with quality players. Not a four-star player in the class. Local signees are DT Vontrell Williams of Mount Carmel, WR Jason Robertson of Lincoln-Way East, OL Robert Bain of Bolingbrook and LB B.J. Bello of Lincoln-Way West.

NBC Sports Chicago announces 2017-18 college basketball schedule


NBC Sports Chicago announces 2017-18 college basketball schedule

Men’s and Women’s Game Schedule includes area contests featuring UIC, Illinois State, Loyola, Bradley, SIU, EIU, Valparaiso, Northern Iowa, Drake, DePaul, Northwestern, and more!

Local coverage begins with the UIC Flames hosting St. Joseph’s on Monday, November 13 at 7:00 PM CT featuring Jordan Bernfield & David Kaplan with the game call!

NBC Sports Chicago live stream available 24/7 on  or via the NBC Sports app

Chicago, IL (November 6, 2017) – NBC Sports Chicago, the multi-platform home for the most games and the most comprehensive coverage of the Chicago Blackhawks, Bulls, Cubs and White Sox, is ready to bring college hoops fans another exciting season of action-packed NCAA basketball featuring a total of 65 men’s & women’s contests, featuring many of the area’s top teams and players.

NBC Sports Chicago viewers can look forward to the very best in local/regional basketball action featuring the Horizon League’s UIC Flames (eight games), along with Missouri Valley Conference action highlighted by Loyola (eight games), Northern Iowa (eight games), Bradley (seven games), Illinois State (five games), Southern Illinois (four games), Drake (four games), Valparaiso (three games), along with MVC #1-ranked pre-season favorite Missouri St. (ten games), plus – live coverage of the always-competitive MVC Tournament beginning March 1.  NOTE: NBC Sports Chicago live stream also available to authenticated NBC Sports Chicago subscribers on or via the NBC Sports app.

NBC Sports Chicago’s early season men’s collegiate basketball schedule gets underway with the University of Illinois-Chicago (UIC) Flames hosting St. Joseph’s on Monday, November 13 at 7:00 PM CT LIVE from the UIC Pavilion.  The game announcing tandem for Flames games on NBC Sports Chicago this season features Jordan Bernfield (play-by-play) and NBC Sports Chicago’s David Kaplan (analyst).  NOTE: ESPN Radio 1000’s Jonathan Hood will be filling in for Kaplan as game analyst for the UIC match-ups against DePaul and Wright St.  In addition, Bernfield will also handle play-by-play duties for every Loyola game on NBC Sports Chicago’s schedule this season, which also features ESPN Radio 1000’s Jeff Dickerson handling color analysis.

Among the key regional match-ups on the schedule this season include UIC at Loyola (Dec. 2), DePaul at UIC (Dec. 9), UIC at Illinois St. (Dec. 19), SIU at Northern Iowa (Dec. 28), Bradley vs. Loyola (Jan. 13 & Jan. 31), Drake at Northern Iowa (Jan. 16), Missouri St. at SIU (Feb. 14), and Bradley at Valparaiso (Feb. 17) among many others. Note the attached schedule for a complete list of men’s games this season on NBC Sports Chicago and on NBC Sports Chicago+.

NBC Sports Chicago’s women’s basketball schedule includes six games featuring USA Today Coaches Poll pre-season #20-ranked/four-time defending Big East Conf. champion DePaul Blue Demons the first Blue Demons telecast taking place on Saturday, December 30 at 7:00 PM CT live from the brand new Wintrust Arena in downtown Chicago vs. St. John’s.  Additional DePaul match-ups on NBC Sports Chicago’s schedule include games against Marquette (Jan. 4), Xavier (Jan. 12), Creighton (Feb. 2), Providence (Feb. 4), and Georgetown (Feb. 16).  In addition, NBC Sports Chicago will also carry the Big Ten’s Northwestern Wildcats in action on Dec. 16 at Missouri St. (note the attached schedule for a complete listing of women’s games this season).

IMPORTANT NOTE: Numerous men’s and women’s games on NBC Sports Chicago’s college basketball schedule this season will air exclusively on NBC Sports Chicago+. NBC Sports Chicago+ (NBCSCH+) is available in high-definition on Comcast/Xfinity ch. 201 in the Chicago area/South Bend, IN & on Comcast/Xfinity ch. 285 in the Peoria, Springfield, Rockford and Champaign markets, along with being made available in DIRECTV, DISH Network, AT&T, RCN, and WOW! homes among numerous other carriers and streaming services; viewers are urged to visit’s CHANNEL FINDER page for complete channel location details.

In addition to game coverage, NBC Sports Chicago will once again provide college basketball fans with team college coaches show this season (air dates may vary during the season) – Tuesdays (beginning in early December): Inside Notre Dame Basketball with Mike Brey (5:30 PM)…Wednesdays (beginning in late December): The Foundation: Northwestern Basketball (5:30 PM)...and The Steve Prohm Show: Iowa State Basketball (Season Preview Special - Mon, Dec. 11 at 5:30 PM; weekly airings on Mondays at 5:30 PM begin in January).


  1. Mon, Nov 13    11:00 am   Jacksonville St. @ Richmond   LIVE
  2. Mon, Nov 13      7:00 pm    UIC:  St. Joseph’s @ UIC           LIVE
  3. Mon, Nov 13     7:00 pm     UNI:  Alcorn State @ Northern Iowa    LIVE   NBCSCH+
  4. Wed, Nov 29      6:00 pm    Vermont @ Richmond     LIVE   NBCSCH+
  5. Fri, Dec 1            7:00 pm      Bradley:  E. Illinois @ Bradley    LIVE   NBCSCH+
  6. Sat, Dec 2            3:00 pm     Loyola:  UIC @ Loyola             LIVE
  7. Sat, Dec 2            3:00 pm        IL ST:  Tulsa @ Illinois State   LIVE   NBCSCH+
  8. Sat, Dec 2            7:00 pm       Missouri St. @ S. Dakota State   LIVE   NBCSCH+
  9. Mon, Dec 4         7:00 pm        Missouri St. @ N Dakota St   LIVE
  10. Thu, Dec 7           7:00 pm       UNI:  UT-Arlington @ Northern Iowa      LIVE
  11. Sat, Dec 9             3:00 pm       UIC:  DePaul @ UIC              LIVE
  12. Sat, Dec 9       3:00 pm        IL ST:  Murray State @ Illinois State      LIVE   NBCSCH+ 
  13. Sat, Dec 9         5:00 pm     James Madison @ Richmond      LIVE     NBCSCH+
  14. Sun, Dec 10             3:00 pm       Missouri St @ Oral Roberts  LIVE      NBCSCH+
  15. Tue, Dec 19              7:00 pm      IL ST:  UIC @ Illinois State         LIVE
  16. Fri, Dec 22                8:00 pm       MVC:  Loyola @ Missouri State    LIVE
  17. Sat, Dec 23               1:00 pm       MVC:  Illinois State @ Evansville    LIVE               
  18. Thu, Dec 28              7:00 pm       MVC:  Valparaiso @ Indiana State   LIVE
  19. Thu, Dec 28    7:00 pm   MVC:  Southern Illinois @ Northern Iowa  LIVE   NBCSCH+
  20. Sat, Dec 30               3:00 pm        MVC:  Evansville @ Loyola     LIVE
  21. Sun, Dec 31             3:00 pm         MVC: Missouri St @ Valparaiso   LIVE  NBCSCH+
  22. Wed, Jan 3                7:00 pm         MVC:  Indiana St @ Loyola         LIVE   NBCSCH+
  23. Sat, Jan 6                  3:00 pm         MVC:  Southern Illinois @ Valparaiso     LIVE
  24. Wed, Jan 10     6:00 pm  MVC:  Northern Iowa @ Indiana State    LIVE   NBCSCH+
  25. Sat, Jan 13                3:00 pm         MVC:  Bradley @ Loyola         LIVE
  26. Sun, Jan 14              2:00 pm         MVC:  Indiana St @ Missouri St       LIVE                                       
  27. Mon, Jan 15             7:00 pm         UIC:  Oakland @ UIC    LIVE
  28. Tue, Jan 16               7:00 pm         MVC:  Drake @ Northern Iowa    LIVE
  29. Wed, Jan 17             6:00 pm         MVC:  Bradley @ Illinois State    LIVE
  30. Wed, Jan 17        7:00 pm    MVC:  Southern Illinois @ Loyola     LIVE   NBCSCH+
  31. Sat, Jan 20                3:00 pm           MVC:  Missouri St. @ Drake     LIVE
  32. Tue, Jan 23               7:00 pm           MVC:  Missouri St. @ Bradley   LIVE
  33. Sat, Jan 27                3:00 pm           UIC:  IUPUI @ UIC    LIVE
  34. Wed, Jan 31             7:00 pm            MVC:  Loyola @ Bradley       LIVE   NBCSCH+
  35. Sat, Feb 3           3:00 pm      MVC:  Indiana St @ Northern Iowa     LIVE   NBCSCH+
  36. Tue, Feb 6           6:00 pm      MVC:  Missouri St. @ Indiana St       LIVE   NBCSCH+
  37. Wed, Feb 7               7:00 pm            MVC:  Drake @ Loyola         LIVE
  38. Thu, Feb 8             7:00 pm        UIC:  Youngstown State @ UIC LIVE   NBCSCH+
  39. Sat, Feb 10                3:00 pm            MVC:  Northern Iowa @ Drake         LIVE
  40. Tue, Feb 13          7:00 pm      MVC:  Evansville @ Northern Iowa   LIVE   NBCSCH+
  41. Wed, Feb 14     7:00 pm     MVC:  Missouri St. @ Southern Illinois   LIVE   NBCSCH+
  42. Sat, Feb 17                8:00 pm            MVC:  Bradley @ Valparaiso         LIVE
  43. Wed, Feb 21     7:00 pm     MVC:  Bradley @ Missouri St.    LIVE   NBCSCH+               
  44. Sat, Feb 24           5:00 pm       St. Joseph’s @ Richmond          LIVE   NBCSCH+
  45. Sun, Feb 28               5:00 pm            UIC:  Wright State @ UIC          LIVE
  46. Thu, Mar 1                6:00 pm            MVC Tournament - Opening Round #1    LIVE
  47. Thu, Mar 1                8:30 pm            MVC Tournament - Opening Round #2     LIVE
  48. Fri, Mar 2                  12:00 pm         MVC Tournament – Quarterfinal #1        LIVE
  49. Fri, Mar 2                  2:30 pm            MVC Tournament – Quarterfinal #2          LIVE
  50. Fri, Mar 2                  6:00 pm            MVC Tournament – Quarterfinal #3         LIVE
  51. Fri, Mar 2                  8:30 pm            MVC Tournament – Quarterfinal #4      LIVE


1. Tue, Nov 14               7:00 pm            Iowa State @ Northern Iowa         LIVE
2. Sun, Nov 19            2:00 pm       Missouri @ Missouri State    LIVE  NBCSCH+
3. Wed, Nov 29             7:00 pm            Missouri St. @ Wichita St          TBA
4. Sat, Dec 16                2:00 pm            Northwestern @ Missouri St    LIVE         NBCSCH+
5. Sat, Dec 30                7:00 pm            St. Johns @ DePaul                    LIVE
6. Thu, Jan 4                   7:00 pm            DePaul @ Marquette              LIVE
7. Fri, Jan 12                   5:00 pm            Xavier @ DePaul                    LIVE         NBCSCH+
8. Fri, Jan 12                   7:00 PM           Missouri St @ Illinois State     LIVE         NBCSCH+
9. Mon, Jan 15           1:00 pm      UIC:  Milwaukee @ UIC     LIVE    NBCSCH+ 
10. Fri, Feb 2                  7:00 pm            Creighton @ DePaul                LIVE
11. Sun, Feb 4                2:00 pm            Providence @ DePaul            LIVE
12. Fri, Feb 16                7:00 pm            Georgetown @ DePaul       LIVE         NBCSCH+
13. Sun, Feb 18              3:00 pm            Missouri St @ Valparaiso    LIVE
14. Thu, Mar 1               7:00 pm            Evansville @ Missouri St     LIVE         NBCSCH+  

(Schedules as of 11/6/17)  -- ALL TIMES CENTRAL TIME

Say it ain't so: DePaul commit Tyger Campbell reopens recruitment


Say it ain't so: DePaul commit Tyger Campbell reopens recruitment

It looks like it was too good to be true.

Tyger Campbell shocked the recruiting world when he committed to DePaul on May 8.

Less than four months later, Campbell has reopened his recruitment.

The four-star point guard out of La Lumiere High School in Indiana, who is the No. 66 prospect in the 2018 Class, took to Twitter Friday night to explain his decision.

One of Campbell's original draws to the Blue Demons was DePaul hiring Shane Heirman as an assistant coach. Heirman coached Campbell for two seasons at La Lumiere.

"I like DePaul and honestly my coach (Shane Heirman) just went there and we have a great connection and he's always had my back," Campbell told when he committed to the Blue Demons. "I like [DePaul] coach Dave Leitao, too. I like his program and he's an intelligent guy."

Campbell currently has offers from a handful of D1 schools, including Illinois, Michigan State, Ole Miss, Purdue, SMU, Memphis and Tennessee.