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August 25, 2011

Breaking down Rivals.com's top 100 players

The long countdown of the days before the season starts is coming to an end: The first games are a week away.

Rivals.com has ended a countdown of its own. With the naming of Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck as our No. 1 player for 2011, The Top 100 Players is complete.

It's been a long journey to No. 1, with one player being released every day.

Our first draft included Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor, who had to be removed when he left school. When we released our No. 73 player, Russell Wilson, he had not picked a school. He since has decided on Wisconsin. And our No. 36 player, Arkansas tailback Knile Davis, has since suffered a broken ankle which will keep him out for the season.

Here's a more detailed look at our top 100 players for 2011:


21: Big Ten
Highest ranked: No. 6, Nebraska DT Jared Crick

17: SEC
Highest ranked: No. 4, South Carolina WR Alshon Jeffery

15: Pac-12
Highest ranked: No. 1, Stanford QB Andrew Luck

13: Big 12
Highest ranked: No 2, Oklahoma State WR Justin Blackmon

12: ACC
Highest ranked: No. 8, Boston College LB Luke Kuechly

8: Mountain West
Highest ranked: No. 9, Boise State QB Kellen Moore

4: Conference USA
Highest ranked: No. 18, Houston QB Case Keenum

4: Independents
Highest ranked: No. 7, Notre Dame WR Michael Floyd

3: Big East
Highest ranked: No. 36, Pittsburgh DE Brandon Lindsey

1: MAC: No. 91, Toledo WR Eric Page

1: Sun Belt: No. 79, FIU WR T.Y. Hilton

1: WAC: No. 88, Hawaii QB Bryant Moniz


17: Quarterbacks
Highest ranked: No. 1, Stanford's Luck

17: Linebackers
Highest ranked: No. 7, BC's Kuechly

16: Offensive linemen (seven tackles, five guards, four centers)
Highest-ranked tackle: No. 16, Ohio State's Mike Adams
Highest-ranked guard: No. 41, Stanford's David DeCastro
Highest-ranked center: No. 66, Wisconsin's Peter Konz

14: Defensive backs (10 cornerbacks, four safeties)
Highest-ranked cornerback: No. 30, Virginia Tech's Jayron Hosley
Highest-ranked safety: No. 33, Alabama's Mark Barron

14: Wide receivers
Highest ranked: No. 2, Oklahoma State's Blackmon

12: Running backs
Highest ranked: No. 3, Oregon's LaMichael James

8: Defensive linemen (four ends, four tackles)
Highest-ranked tackle: No. 6, Nebraska's Crick
Highest-ranked end: No. 36, Pitt's Lindsey

1 tight end: No. 82, Missouri's Michael Egnew

1 kicker: No. 97, Georgia's Blair Walsh


18: Texas
Highest ranked: No. 1, Stanford's Luck (Houston Stratford)

13: Florida
Highest ranked: No. 14, Boston College RB Montel Harris (Jacksonville Trinity Christian)

11: California
Highest ranked: No. 13, Arizona State LB Vontaze Burfict (Corona Centennial)

6: Ohio
Highest ranked: No. 8, BC's Kuechly (Cincinnati St. Xavier)

5: Alabama
Highest ranked: No. 33, Alabama's Barron (Mobile St. Paul's)

4: Michigan
Highest ranked: No. 47, Michigan's Mike Martin (Detroit Central Catholic)

4: Oklahoma
Highest ranked: No. 2, Oklahoma State's Blackmon (Ardmore Plainview)

4: Pennsylvania
Highest ranked: No. 36, Pitt's Lindsey (Aliquippa High)

3: Georgia
Highest ranked: No. 38, Nebraska CB Alfonzo Dennard (Rochelle Wilcox County)

3: South Carolina
Highest ranked: No. 4, South Carolina's Jeffery (St. Matthews Calhoun County)

3: Tennessee
Highest ranked: No. 42, Alabama's Dont'a Hightower (Lewisburg Marshall County)

2 each: Hawaii, Kentucky, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, Virginia, Washington

1 each: Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin

Note: Four attended junior college after high school, three attended prep school

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David Fox is a national writer for Rivals.com. He can be reached at dfox@rivals.com.

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