TOP GROUP TO WATCH: Already known for its big-play offense, defending Big 12 champion Baylor's signing class included four receivers from Texas — KD Cannon from Mount Pleasant, Davion Hall from Texarkana, Chris Platt from Willis and Ishmael Zamora from Houston. Coach Art Briles says unequivocally that is the best such group — and not only in the Big 12. "If there is a better receiver class in America, then somebody's speaking with fork and tongue, because there's not," Briles said. "There's not four receivers better than who we signed. They're just not out there."
BIGGEST SURPRISE: While a big surprise to everybody else, but not to Iowa State coach Paul Rhoades, highly touted receiver Allen Lazard affirmed his more than year-old commitment to the Cyclones even after continued overtures from schools such as Notre Dame and Iowa. Rhoads began his signing day press conference Wednesday by holding up Lazard's signed letter of intent. The receiver's father played defensive back at Iowa State from 1990-93.
STRONG RE-RECRUITING, GOING OUT: The league's only new coach is Charlie Strong at Texas, and he managed to keep together a solid recruiting class of 23 players. On the weekend that Mack Brown stepped down, just a day after the team banquet, the Longhorns were hosting 17 recruits. Strong was mostly able to re-recruit Brown's class and keep it together. Of note, there are six players from outside of Texas, an unheard of number under Brown the previous 16 years. Brown recruited some of those out-of-state players, but Strong got two late commitments from South Carolina and Florida.
BUILDING IN SUNFLOWER STATE: Kansas and Kansas State both went heavy on junior college players, signing eight each. Coach Bill Snyder and the Wildcats, who lost six senior starters on defense, signed five junior college defenders. The best in that group, linebacker D'Vonta Derricott and defensive tackle Terrell Clinkscales, fill the two biggest holes and should help immediately. Kansas coach Charlie Weis also added two transfers from four-year schools, quarterback T.J. Millweard from UCLA and tight end Kent Taylor from Florida.