Mississippi State football recruiting 2014:Bulldogs struggling to compete with best of SEC

Mississippi State is lagging behind its SEC counterparts in the talent arms race.

The Mississippi State Bulldogs have had some highs and lows under Dan Mullen, but they haven't been able to break into the SEC's top tier. On the recruiting trail, MSU is drawing commitments, but the quality of those pledges fails to stack up to the rest of the conference. With heavyweights Alabama, LSU, Texas A&M and Auburn in the division, and upstart Ole Miss, it's tough to compete.

The Bulldogs currently have 19 players committed in the Class of 2014, including a few who have come on board in the last month or so. Defensive end Will Coleman and offensive tackle Sean Rawlings gave their commitments on Oct. 3, wide receiver Jesse Jackson pledged on Oct. 7, and safety Brandon Bryant committed on Nov. 4. State's class is ranked a respectable 33rd nationally, according to the 247 Sports composite ratings, but it comes in last among SEC teams.

Four-star athlete Jamoral Graham is the cream of the crop. Out of Decatur (Miss.) Newton Country High, he's listed as the 203rd-best player in the country, and he's ranked No. 13 at his position and No. 5 in his home state. Running back Aeris Williams is another four-star prospect committed to the Bulldogs. Coming from West Point (Miss.) High School, he's listed at No. 248 in America, No. 16 at running back and No. 6 in Mississippi.

Athlete Gerri Green is the remaining four-star player in the class. The Greenville (Miss.) Weston High product has good size at 6'5, 230 pounds, and he rates out 271st in the nation, 24th at his position and seventh in the state of Mississippi.

MSU has a couple of top-100 JUCO commitments, both of whom are three-star players. Offensive tackle Norman Price, out of Raymond (Miss.) Hinds CC, ranks 53rd nationally, and Coleman, from Tyler (Texas) JC, is ranked No. 78.

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