By the Numbers: With latest realignment, the SEC and Big Ten strengthened their monopoly on recruiting rankings in the 2024 cycle

On3 imageby:Jesse Simonton02/09/24


Just last week, Greg Sankey and Tony Petitti announced a partnership between the SEC and Big Ten to form a joint advisory group with the goal of addressing the “significant challenges” within college athletics. 

My On3 colleague Andy Staples dubbed the partnership B1G and RICH, and the alliance between the two power conferences certainly felt like a takeover

And with 2024 National Signing Day officially in the books, it’s easy to see why: In the college sport most care about, that makes the most money and draws the most eyeballs, the SEC and Big Ten have only strengthened their stranglehold on what’s most important.

Talent acquisition. 

February’s National Signing Day is no longer filled with drama or intrigue. Instead, Wednesday was a coordination day for the two superpower conferences to flex their dominance in the new age of realignment. 

The SEC and Big Ten have long monopolized recruiting rankings, but the expanded conferences has created a Grand Canyon-esque chasm between the halves and have-nots in college football. 

The two conferences combined to sign 20 of the Top 25 classes in the 2024 cycle, per On3 — with the SEC inking seven of the Top 10 headlined by Georgia’s No. 1 class

The ACC landed three classes inside the Top 15, but the league’s next-highest rated class was North Carolina at No. 27. Texas Tech was the lone Big 12 school with a Top 25 class — and the conference had just eight classes in the Top 50 nationally. 

Top 25 recruiting classes in On3’s 2024 Rankings

SEC: 13

B1G: 7

ACC: 3

BIG 12: 1


Of the 32 5-stars in the On3 Rankings, 22 signed with SEC programs. 

Georgia (5) had more 5-stars than the entire Big Ten combined (4), and as many as the ACC (5). 

There were 14 programs to ink at least a dozen blue-chip prospects — 7 from the SEC, 5 from the Big Ten, 1 from the ACC and Notre Dame. 

With no Texas or Oklahoma anymore, the talent infusion (or lack thereof) is particularly stark in the new-look Big 12, where the league signed 25 TOTAL 4-star prospects.  The 2-Pac league of Oregon State and Washington State combined for a single blue-chip signee. 

From the likes of wideout Jeremiah Smith, the No. 1 overall prospect in the On3 Rankings, to receiver Kylan Billiot, ranked No. 100 overall, where did the Top-100 prospects end up this cycle?

30 different programs landed at least a single Top-100 prospect. 

The SEC signed more than half of the Top 100 prospects (52), with the rest going to the Big Ten (24), ACC (16), Notre Dame (5) and Big 12 (3). 

Georgia: 9
Alabama: 9
Ohio State: 7
Miami: 7
Oregon: 6
Clemson: 5
Auburn: 5
Florida: 5
Texas: 5
Notre Dame: 5
LSU: 5
Oklahoma: 4
Tennessee: 3
Nebraska: 3
Penn State: 3
Missouri: 2
Florida State: 2
USC: 2
South Carolina: 2
Texas A&M: 1
Minnesota: 1
Colorado: 1
Wisconsin: 1
Texas Tech: 1
Arkansas: 1
Kansas: 1
Ole Miss: 1
Michigan: 1
North Carolina: 1
NC State: 1