| Tue 07/03/2017 - 12:54 EST

2018 College Football Recruiting Prospects

2018 College Football Recruiting Prospects

Top 10 Prep Prospects of 2018 Class

As more attention, expertise and quality analytics have been lent to the business of identifying top high school football talent, the process has become more reliable, and thus, more meaningful. 2002 marked the first year that the major recruiting service rivals.com began ranking players with its star system. From 2002-2011, 288 prep players were designated five-star recruits - the most elite and exclusive indicator of talent and potential. Of those 288, 123 were eventual NFL draft picks.

That's a pretty convincing statistic given the degree of difficulty involved in projecting 17 year-old football talent and the attrition associated with things like off-the-field issues and injuries. In short, being tabbed the elite of the elite means something. In short, being tabbed the elite of the elite means something. Here's a look at the top 10 high school prospects of the 2018 recruiting class.

10. James Cook, RB, Miami, FL

10. James Cook, RB, Miami, FL

If genetics tell us anything, and they usually do, this Florida State commit has hit the lottery. The younger brother of FSU star Dalvin Cook, James appears poised to step directly into his older sibling's massive footsteps and lead the Seminoles rushing attack. James Cook enjoyed a stellar playing career at Miami Central, a school notorious for producing elite football talent. Keep an eye on this guy and his massive potential.

9. Jacob Sirmon, QB, Bothell, WA

9. Jacob Sirmon, QB, Bothell, WA

This pro-style passer has some serious arm talent and the ability to make all the throws. Sirmon figures to be a nice fit into coach Chris Peterson's offense, but things could get a little interesting as signing day approaches. Sirmon is the nephew of recently hired Louisville defensive coordinator Peter Sirmon. While still highly probable the younger Sirmon will keep his commitment to the Huskies, the allure of replacing 2016 Heisman winner Lamar Jackson at Louisville may enter his consciousness.

8. Matt Corral, QB, Thousand Oaks, CA

8. Matt Corral, QB, Thousand Oaks, CA

USC is set at the QB position for at least two more years with sophomore-to-be Sam Darnold a well-fancied contender for the 2017 Heisman, but it never hurts to have a stud like Corral waiting in the wings. Cross-town rival UCLA is making a strong push for Corral as well and is better-positioned to offer more playing time. It will be interesting to see how this recruiting battle plays out in Los Angeles.

7. Patrick Surtain Jr, CB, Fort Lauderdale, FL

7. Patrick Surtain Jr, CB, Fort Lauderdale, FL

Surtain's dad was an 11-year NFL vet, so here's another case of a top ten recruit boasting the pedigree to match prodigious skill. This lean, ball-hawking defensive back has the frame to add weight and play safety, but his cover skills are likely to valuable to sacrifice. Surtain appears bound for LSU's nasty defensive unit, but Florida State is still in the mix.

6. Jackson Carman, OL, Fairfield, OH

6. Jackson Carman, OL, Fairfield, OH

Big boy football is played in the trenches, and there's no better anchor for an offensive line this this 6'6, 295 lb tackle. Carman is an Ohio State commit and should contend for playing time as a true freshmen for Urban Meyer. A prototypical NFL lineman, Carman will benefit immensely from the rigors of a big-time college strength program.

5. Jamaree Salyer, OL, Atlanta, GA

5. Jamaree Salyer, OL, Atlanta, GA

At 6'3, 327 lbs, Salyer will probably need to firm up a bit, but there's no denying the sheer size and athletic ability this Georgia commit possesses. While WR and RB talent can be a dime a dozen in any recruiting class, beef wins championships and Salyer should immediately bolster a struggling Georgia O-line.

4. Zamir White, RB, Laurinburg, NC

4. Zamir White, RB, Laurinburg, NC

At 6'1 210 lbs, this guy is surely the most physical runner in the 2018 class. White is being pursued by a handful of ACC teams with Clemson and Florida State leading the way. Alabama, Auburn, and Florida are the most probable among SEC suitors and whoever lands this talent will benefit instantly from adding a college-ready running back to their backfield.  

3. Xavier Thomas, DE, Bradenton, FL

3. Xavier Thomas, DE, Bradenton, FL

Let the games begin as Clemson and South Carolina lead the way for this pass rusher's talents. There's never been any love lost between these instate rivals and things could get very interesting before Thomas makes his decision. At 6'3 250 lbs, Thomas has the freakish athletic ability, strength, and quickness of a future NFL first-rounder.  

2. Micah Parsons, DE, Harrisburg, PA

2. Micah Parsons, DE, Harrisburg, PA

Penn State head coach James Franklin is putting together an epic 2018 recruiting class, and Micah Parsons is the centerpiece. Like Xavier Thomas, this 6'3 236 lb specimen is an elite pass rusher that can instantly bolster a D-line and take pressure off a secondary. 

1. Trevor Lawrence, QB, Cartersville, GA

1. Trevor Lawrence, QB, Cartersville, GA

The consensus top-rated player of the 2018 class is a Clemson commit and one of the best pro-style passing prospects in years. While the Tigers will have a bridge year between star QB Deshaun Watson and Lawrence, everyone should rest easier knowing this stud is in the fold.  

2018 College Football Futures

Following college football recruiting certainly gives regular sports bettors another tool for analyzing early-season matchups and understanding roster depth. Top Sportsbooks like Bodog offer enticing future bets at generous odds, allowing players to bet on the 2018 College Football Playoff Champion or the next Heisman Trophy winner.

2018 Odds

Just because it's the offseason, doesn't mean you can't get down on college football. In season betting opportunities include prop bets, teasers, pleasers, moneyline wagers, pointspreads and more. Catch all the best odds and betting value at these preferred partners.  

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