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Horns Down: ESPN no longer thinks Arch Manning is perfect

ESPN no longer sees Texas football commit Arch Manning as the perfect quarterback prospect.

ESPN felt like destroying something beautiful, by killing Arch Manning‘s perfect recruiting ranking.

Manning committed to the Texas football program on June 23 over Alabama and Georgia. The New Orleans native and Isidore Newman standout had been the No. 1 overall recruit throughout the process. However, his perfect five-star rating is no more, as he has been leapfrogged by USC football commit Malachi Nelson out of Los Alamitos, California. It was quite a run, but it is over.

While 247Sports, On3 and Rivals still have him as their No. 1, Nelson showed ESPN who No. 2 works for, as The Undefeated hit Manning with the Horns Down in its latest recruiting update.

Texas football: ESPN decided that Arch Manning is no longer a perfect recruit

What the hell happened?! I’ll tell you, alright. This was bound to happen. It was inevitable. Eventually, one of the big four recruiting services was going to ding Manning for him not taking part in camps, 7-on-7, Elite 11, things of that nature. His recruitment has been very different from the jump. Though the old-school approach still works, people really like these 2023 quarterbacks.

Whether it is Nelson, Nico Iamaleava (Tennessee), Dante Moore (Oregon), Jackson Arnold (Oklahoma) or Eli Holstein (Alabama), this looks to be one of the strongest quarterback classes in recent memory. Nelson, Iamaleava and Moore have been five-stars for quite a some time now, while Arnold and Christopher Vizzina (Clemson) are recent additions to achieving five-star status.

Even four-stars like Holstein and J.J. Kohl (Iowa State) have turned heads in these camps that Manning has not participated in. This is not ESPN slighting the Mannings more than it is assessing what it is seeing presently. Of course, there is one other huge factor when it comes to Manning’s evaluation. Level of competition was unfortunately going to be an issue for him in his recruitment.

While all the Mannings played at Isidore Newman, as well as Odell Beckham Jr., it is a small private school in New Orleans. Arnold, Iamaleava and Nelson all play at schools with at or approaching 3,000 students in either California or Texas. Though small school high school quarterbacks have flourished in college, and beyond, it is always something to be aware of in the recruiting business.

Unless Manning has a sensational senior season at Isidore Newman, he will not be perfect again.

For more NCAA football news, analysis, opinion and unique coverage by FanSided, including Heisman Trophy and College Football Playoff rankings, be sure to bookmark these pages.

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