Recruiting Roundtable IV: How does 2012 class differ from 2011?
The number of talented West Coast offensive linemen stands out
The 2012 quarterback class seems to be deeper than it was in 2011
Several cornerbacks in 2012 class are better than their 2011 counterparts
With the class of 2012 recruiting cycle at its halfway point, it is time to put some members of the 247Sports national recruiting team on the hot seat.
In the coming days, 247Sports recruiting analysts JC Shurburtt, Barton Simmons, Steve Wiltfong, Gerry Hamilton and Rusty Mansell will respond to questions about what they have seen so far this year on the recruiting trail and what might happen in the fall.
Today's question: What does the 2012 class have you that you did not see in the 2011 class?
Shurburtt: It has to be depth at offensive tackle. Last recruiting cycle, there obviously were talented tackles like Cyrus Kouandjio and La'El Collins, but it didn't have the depth that this class has -- particularly out west. Look at Paul Thurston, the kid from Colorado who recently committed to Nebraska, sitting there at No. 231 overall and No. 30 at his position in the country. Last cycle, I doubt there were more than 10 (and that may be stretching it) at tackle better than him. The class is that good, that deep at that position.
Simmons: The obvious characteristic of this class is the amount of big, elite linemen out west. There are six or seven kids on the West Coast who I could realistically envision being first-round draft picks in four or five years.
Mansell: The class of 2012 may not have the "star" power of 2011, but it seems to have more depth. There seems to be more of the good three-star and four-star players from each state.
Wiltfong: This is as talented a quarterback class as we've seen in awhile. It's a deeper group than 2011, and I see several more players who have the potential to be multi-year starters on the next level.
Hamilton: I believe the cornerback position is much better in 2012 than 2011. Last year, it was tough to make the call on having a cornerback prospect high in the rankings. In 2012, there is a potentially special prospect in Yuri Wright and a number of others who would likely have been the top ranked corner in the 2011 class. Geno Smith (Atlanta/St. Pius X), Terry Richardson (Detroit/Cass Tech), Wayne Morgan (Brooklyn/Erasmus Hall) and Tracy Howard (Hollywood, Fla./Miramar) are a few of the other elite corners in this class.
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