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Predicting where college football's top 10 uncommitted recruits will play

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Plenty of five-star talent remains on the table, and it just so happens that most of it is on defense

National Signing Day is less than a week away, and classes are filling up. Plenty of highly-rated prospects are yet to commit. Here are my guesses at where the top ten uncommitted prospects via the 247Sports Composite rankings will sign.

Rashan Gary, DT, Paramus (N.J.) Catholic

Steve Dykes, USA Today

The first school the 6'4, 290-pounder (who can run a 4.74 40) mentioned when I interviewed him in 2014 was Alabama, and the Tide have been on this Garden State prospect for a long time. Other SEC schools like Georgia and Auburn, as well as ACC school Clemson are trying to get in the mix. Ole Miss has done a great job working on he and his mother as well, and I'm told they are close with Ole Miss offensive tackle commit Greg Little.

But my pick for the country's No. 1 overall recruit is Michigan, edging out Clemson. Gary's former coach Chris Partridge is the new director of recruiting operations, and two former teammates of Gary's, Jabrill Peppers and Juwann Bushell-Beatty, are also in Ann Arbor. Plus, the Wolverines had a strong first season under Jim Harbaugh. Through the entire process, it's been Michigan and [school], be it Alabama, Auburn, Ole Miss, Clemson, etc. The constant is Michigan.

Derrick Brown, DT, Buford (Ga.) Lanier

The country's No. 4 overall prospect told SB Nation this spring that Georgia was his leader, and maintained that for a long time. But Auburn has made a big move and Brown is no longer speaking to the media. I'll go out on a limb and project a big miss for Kirby Smart and a great addition for Auburn.

Ben Davis, LB, Gordo (Ala.)

Ben Davis

The No. 1 inside linebacker in the country is an Alabama legacy, the son of Wayne Davis, who was the leading tackler in Crimson Tide history. The pick is easy: Alabama. Davis is an awesome player to watch at 6'3.5 and 240 pounds with good coverage ability and length. He's tried to say that other schools like Auburn, Georgia or Notre Dame have a real chance, but I am not buying it.

Mique Juarez, LB, Torrance (Calif.) North

Mique Juarez

Juarez decommitted from USC in October after the firing of Steve Sarkisian, and USC thought it could get back in the race, but Juarez now has a top three of UCLA, Ole Miss and Alabama. Ole Miss and UCLA folks feel good, but it's hard to count out the Tide. In the end, geography wins and Juarez sticks with UCLA.

Mecole Hardman Jr., ATH, Elberton (Ga.) County

Hardman is one of the most explosive athletes in the country, capable of excelling at receiver or cornerback. I think Kirby Smart will be able to keep the talented athlete home for UGA.

Demetris Robertson, ATH, Savannah (Ga.) Christian

Robertson is one of the most dynamic athletes in the country, capable of playing cornerback or receiver at an elite level. And he's smart, too, being recruited by Stanford and Notre Dame. Robertson is definitely considering Alabama, Stanford, Georgia and Notre Dame. I am going to pick Notre Dame to pull this one out due to a combination of playing time and academics, but his recruitment could go on past National Signing Day.

Lyndell Wilson, OLB, Montgomery (Ala.) Carver

Alabama. The country's top linebacker spoke glowingly of Alabama when I interviewed him this spring. Georgia might have a shot, too, thanks to hiring Kirby Smart, but I still believe the Tide has the best shot.

Wilson is an extremely athletic player at 6'2 and 220 pounds. He strikes down running backs and also shows some ability as a pass rusher and in coverage playing for powerhouse Carver.

Jeffrey Simmons, DE, Macon (Ms.) Noxubee County

Jeffery Simmons

Simmons is one heckuva prospect with great size and should immediately contribute as a run defender. In time he could become a plus pass rusher as well. I think the Ole Miss Rebels will beat out Alabama and Mississippi State for this five-star prospect.

Kristian Fulton, CB, Metarie (La.) Acrhbishop Rummel

Kristian Fulton

Let's apply the annual LSU rule that seems to work extremely well:

  1. Prospect is from somewhere in Louisiana South of Highway 84? Check,
  2. LSU expressed interest throughout the cycle? Check,
  3. Prospect does not have family connection to another contender: Check,
  4. Confirm that Alabama is not the top competitor: (It's Florida, Check),
  5. Predict prospect to LSU

Jack Jones, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly

Jack Jones

USC badly needs defensive backs and Jones could likely play immediately. UCLA is the top competition, but the safer bet is the Trojans.

Caleb Kelly, OLB, Clovis (Ca.) West

Oklahoma. In the past 14 years, Oklahoma has signed 28 players from California, surprising success for a program 1,400 miles away from Los Angeles. And the Sooners have had recent success in the Fresno area.

Adding to that connection is defensive backs graduate assistant Courtney "Chip" Viney, who played his prep football in Fresno and his college ball at UCLA.

"I talk to coach Viney a lot, well of course, he is more of like a big brother he'll call me 'little bro' and stuff like that. He is more of a big brother kind of guy, he'll still do his little recruiting stuff - say certain stuff, it's more words of wisdom and good luck and stuff like that,"

he said to Rivals.com ($)

Notre Dame and Oregon are pushing, but I'll stick with my Oklahoma pick.

Photos via Student Sports unless otherwise noted.

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SB Nation presents: The official way-too-early 2016 college football top 10