Fact or Fiction: Dante Moore could unseat Arch Manning as the top QB

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Rivals national recruiting analyst Clint Cosgrove and national recruiting director Adam Adam Gorney along with Tyler James from InsideNDSports.com and Zack Carpenter of InsideNebraska.com tackle three topics and determine whether they believe each statement is FACT or FICTION.

1. Oregon
commit Dante Moore has a legitimate shot at unseating Arch Manning as the
nation’s No. 1 quarterback. 

Dante Moore

Dante Moore

Gorney’s take: FACT. There are no sacred cows in recruiting and every quarterback and every prospect will be reviewed and reconsidered through their senior seasons and the all-star events. Dante Moore was absolutely phenomenal at the OT7 event in Las Vegas and then was my top quarterback at the Elite 11 to close out the summer. Arch Manning is the No. 1 prospect in the 2023 class and has a special skillset of his own along with an incredible pedigree but Moore absolutely made a statement this summer with his exceptional play on the field. There is absolutely a legitimate shot that Moore could end up as the No. 1 quarterback in this class.

Cosgrove’s take: FACT. While I do believe Manning will likely end up QB No. 1, I do believe Moore will, and should be considered, for the top spot among 2023 quarterbacks. Manning appears to be a special talent and has the pedigree to match, but there are so many unknowns surrounding his game due to his lack of competing in national camps and competitions. Moore on the other hand has proven to be the ultimate competitor. He shows up and outperforms the already high expectations put on him each and every time he competes at anything. We have a much better grasp on how Moore will perform at the next level than we do for Manning. Manning may be the next “Manning”, but we know exactly what we are getting out of Moore during a time when there are a number of questions surrounding the current No. 1 player in the nation.

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2. Notre Dame will finish with the top-ranked class in the 2023 recruiting cycle.

Marcus Freeman

Marcus Freeman (USA Today Sports Images)

James’ take: FICTION. Notre Dame should remain near the top of the rankings, but it will be very hard to hold onto the top spot into February. The Irish likely won’t have enough five-star commits to fight off the usual suspects fighting for the top spot. Even if Notre Dame wins out with all of its somewhat realistic remaining targets, it might not be enough to push Notre Dame above 3,000 points for the class, which has been a requirement to take home the title in previous cycles. The Irish can still have a strong close to the class, but they’ll need some rankings bumps for their commits to finish No. 1.

Cosgrove’s take: FACT. Notre Dame has always been a national brand and it has produced excellent recruiting results over the years. At the same time, there seems to be a new swagger, feeling, and brand in South Bend with Marcus Freeman as head coach. This makes me believe the Irish can compete with, and beat, any team in the nation for a recruit. While Notre Dame has different academic standards than some of the other schools it competes with for top talent, the Irish are finding a way to get top commit after top commit. I don’t see this slowing down anytime soon. My biggest fear when it comes to saying they will be No. 1 at the end of this cycle is that they may lack the five-star players to put them over the top. At the same time, something tells me that Notre Dame is going to stay hot and the Irish could even land a five-star that nobody sees coming.

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3. Nebraska will sign a top-25 class in the 2023 recruiting cycle.

Omarion Miller

Omarion Miller (Sam Spiegelman)

Carpenter’s take: FACT: We are heading into the most important season of Scott Frost’s tenure at Nebraska, and we are in the middle of the most important offseason of his time as the Huskers’ head coach, too. Frost showed that he knew how big of an offseason this was by overhauling most of his coaching staff, and that included putting the right man in charge of the job as the recruiting personnel director (Vince Guinta), in addition to making one of the best assistant coaching hires in all of college football this offseason (receivers coach Mickey Joseph). Guinta’s strategy has already been working as well as could have been hoped, and Joseph has been tearing it up on the recruiting trail. He spearheaded the Huskers landing their third-highest-ranked receiver commitment since 2006 (four-star Louisiana wideout Omarion Miller), and he is still doing work down in the Bayou State. Nebraska sits in a great position with defensive end Ashley Williams Jr. heading into his commitment announcement, and they are in a good spot with New Orleans cornerback Ryan Robinson Jr. as well. Jr Sia is an offensive lineman who is also trending toward Nebraska.

That’s three commitments that would boost the Huskers in their recruiting rankings. The big fish remains, though, in Malachi Coleman. The borderline five-star is arguably the most important recruit for this program in the last decade. If Joseph lands him, it would be a coup de grâce for a top-25 class. Not an official prediction, but my belief is they do wind up pulling off a monumental win for his commitment later in the cycle.

Cosgrove’s take: FACT. Last year was a down year for Nebraska in terms of recruiting and the 2022 class actually deviated from the norm when it comes to the Husker’s recruiting ranking. There is a new energy in Nebraska, changes were made on staff with an emphasis on winning now, and thus far the changes appear to be paying dividends. Hiring Vince Guinta from Baylor and Mikey Joseph from LSU appear to have made Nebraska legit contenders for top talent that they have not been able to snag in recent years. Look no further than the recent commitment of one time LSU commit and Louisiana native, Omarion Miller, as an example of the strides Nebraska has made on the recruiting front. The catalyst for Nebraska having a top-25 class could come down to landing local star Malachi Coleman. Should the Huskers land Coleman they will almost guarantee themselves a spot in the top 25. With a strong in-state class, and some big out of state wins which the Huskers have already proven capable of landing, I see the 2023 Husker recruiting class definitely ending in the top 25.

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