Minnesota recruiting 2013: Jeff Jones leads small class

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

It's been slow going on the recruiting trail for Minnesota, which has just eight commitments for 2014.

Minnesota has the smallest class in the Big Ten at this stage of the recruiting cycle, with just eight verbals. That does include one four-star player, but the group ranks last in the conference and 76th nationally. The size of the class has something to do with those rankings, but the Gophers haven't picked up much elite talent, and that's a factor as well.

The Gophers added a pair of consensus three-star players recently -- linebacker Everett Williams committed at the end of September, and tight end Brandon Lingen came on board in early October.

Minneapolis (Minn.) Washburn High School running back Jeff Jones is easily the highest-ranked player in the fold, and unfortunately for the Gophers, might also be the player least likely to sign. The consensus four-star prospect is listed as a soft verbal by 247 Sports. He is considered the ninth-best running back in the country and the No. 154 overall player in the 2014 class.

Connor Mayes is a three-star center from Van Alstyne High School in Van Alstyne, Texas. He is regarded as a top-five player at his position, as well as the 53rd-best player from the state of Texas. He is ranked 442nd overall.

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