COLUMN: How good is the Gophers’ 2024 recruiting class?

–> The Gophers had another tremendous weekend on the recruiting trail and their 2024 class now ranks in the Top 10 nationally, but will it last?

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Wisconsin OL Nathan Roy

Over the weekend, the Gophers got a commitment from Wisconsin’s No. 1 player Nathan Roy, who is the highest-ranked player committed to Minnesota in the P.J. Fleck era. So far, this is the biggest difference between the Gophers’ 2024 class and years in the past. Fleck’s best class was his first one (2018), where he got four 4-star commitments, led by Curtis Dunlap who was ranked 218th best in the country. Nathan Roy is currently ranked 174th best. These numbers are always subject to change, but landing your biggest commitment as a head coach will certainly help your class.

23 current commitments

Another major characteristic of this class is the fact that the Gophers already have a whopping 23 commitments in the month of June. In today’s college sports era, there is no telling how many of those commitments sign on the dotted line come early National Signing Day in December, but 23 commitments would already rank 3rd-most in the Fleck-era. The 2020 class (24) and 2018 class (25) both ranked top-40 nationally and had more commitments, but it is only June for this cycle, so Fleck and his staff still have plenty of time to add to that number.

When you’re still this early in the cycle, the number of commitments has a major role to play in overall team rankings. There are still 18 uncommitted 5-star prospects according to 247sports. So a team like the Gophers will not have a realistic chance of landing those recruits who find themselves higher in the team rankings with 22 3-star commitments because the “big boys” are focused and waiting on commitments from those elite recruits. This is a major reason why you see the Gophers currently ahead of teams like USC and Alabama which will change over time.

4-star prospects

Nathan Roy is currently the Gophers’ only 4-star commitment for 2024. They’ve had as many as four 4-star commitments (2021) in a class and 3 in 2018, a major reason why both of those classes ranked in the top 40 nationally. Two major recruits that would keep the Gophers’ momentum rolling in the class would be two of the top three players in Minnesota Wyatt Gilmore (Rogers) and Emmerson Mandell (Irondale). Both players are 4-star prospects and both players’ commitments would bring the Gophers to the magical number of three they had in that great 2018 class.

Realistic Expectations/Reaction

The Gophers will not end with a top-10 recruiting class in 2024. Due to the fact that the Gophers are recruiting only two other 4-star prospects at the moment, they will simply not compete with other top programs come early National Signing Day in December or NSD in February. With all that being said, it is still a tremendous recruiting class for the Gophers and I think it had a real chance to be one of their best ever and maybe even rank inside the top 30 at the end. Kids and potential recruits look at team recruiting rankings and the fact that the Gophers are in the top 10 right now is something that we might not see an impact on the program in the short term, but it makes them nationally relevant in the long term. People are talking about Gophers’ recruiting on a national scale, which is a big win for the program’s long-term image. Overall, this Gophers’ recruiting class should be getting hype an praise, because it is good for the program and it is one of the best classes in program history.

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