24/7 Sports has released a list of the top college football brands in America, according to recruits, and it’s filled with surprises. The Top 10 was littered with programs from each of the Power Five conferences, showing a range of diversity amongst the schools that these young prospects recognize most.
The rankings have sparked an immediate reaction from fans online as they race to social media to post their opinions.
Writer Brad Crawford posted the Top 10 to his Twitter page, which you can find below.
The most recognizable programs in college football, according to high school recruits. 🤔
TOP 25 LIST – https://t.co/zd4wU5cDpU
*@officialvisit surveyed 1,000 high school football players last year on brand strength pic.twitter.com/4MyZRtj0ff
— 247Sports (@247Sports) August 29, 2023
The poll surveyed 1,000 high school players from around the country, giving insight to who they believe to be the biggest programs in college football.
The most notable absences from the initial group are Notre Dame, Michigan, Florida State, and USC, though each can be found scattered throughout the Top 25.
The Fighting Irish represent maybe the most global brand in college sports, proven by the fan attendance at their season opener in Dublin. An estimated 30K+ Irish supporters made their way across the pond to watch a 42-3 walloping of Navy.
Michigan, meanwhile, has been in the College Football Playoff each of the last two seasons and is arguably the most historic program in the sport.
FSU and USC have each won national titles over the last 20 seasons while boasting major brands on their respective coasts, which you’d think would still resonate with this generation.
But while those notable schools were left out of the top group of college football brands, the most bitter response is coming from a program that actually did make the cut.
Look no further than Austin, TX.
Yes, the University of Texas came in at No. 8 on the list which wasn’t good enough to satisfy its rabid fanbase.
The ranking may not come as a surprise to most outside followers given the recent string of mediocrity from the Longhorns. The team has failed to win more than eight games in a regular season 12 of the last 13 years.
But despite the middling results over the last decade plus, Texas remains a staple in college football. That’s exhibited in this brand recognition amongst recruits. It’s also displayed in the team’s recent recruiting success, having classes rated amongst the nation’s top 10 in seven of the past nine cycles.
That includes a No. 3 standing in the most recent class after landing No. 1 overall player Arch Manning.
What has Longhorns fans most peeved, though, isn’t where they rank in this recent list, but rather who sits in front of them.
Both rivals Oklahoma and Texas A&M were considered better brands by the recruits in this survey, leading many connected to the University of Texas to post reactions in the comments section.
Aggy. Lol. Nice try.
— UT Mangler (@UT_Mangler) August 30, 2023
In no world is A&M a bigger brand than Texas
— Lord Stein (@hugelordstein) August 29, 2023
The farmers over The Horns? Get a grip.
— Uncle Micky (@TheUncleMicky) August 30, 2023
TAMU and OU fans certainly enjoyed the list, though, taking a victory lap with their reactions.
The recruits know Texas is little bro to OU and Aggie 😭😭😭 https://t.co/yUqrsc4Hx6
— PAWL (@Boomer_Pawl) August 29, 2023
Seems about right. Texas normally wins only 8 games a year https://t.co/d3LTmSxFoE
— Crazy (Sooner) Craig (@CRobbins25) August 29, 2023
Longhorn twitter is now losing their minds lol! https://t.co/3PULEmMFp3
— CajunAg06 (@CajunAg06) August 30, 2023
The Oklahoma ranking is justified given the string of 10-win seasons put together under Lincoln Riley and Bob Stoops. The Aggies’ standing seems a little off, though, at least based on recent on-field results.
Of course, having players like Johnny Manziel, Von Miller, Mike Evans, and Kyler Murray (briefly) suit up for the program in recent years might resonate with prospects more so than record alone.
This should be the last bit of offseason debate we see online. This weekend represents the season opener for most of college football. We’ll soon get to see how things play out on the field.