DFW recruiting blog

North Texas is off to a terrific start in recruiting for the 2020 recruiting cycle and are making a run at finishing in front of its longtime rival SMU.

College football games are won and lost in the fall, but teams are often built in the dead of the summer when several of the top prospects in the country decide where they will continue their careers.

North Texas has improved its performance in recruiting dramatically over the last couple of years. The addition of Luke Walerius, who heads up UNT's recruiting efforts, has made a huge difference.

Today seems like a perfect day to check in as far as how UNT is doing not overall, but in its annual battle with longtime rival SMU.

The rivalry is one all UNT fans care about. The Mean Green beat SMU 46-23 last season in a milestone win for coach Seth Littrell's program.

The two programs have been quietly going head-to-head on several recruits this summer and are also putting together two of the top recruiting classes among Group of Five teams nationally. 

UNT ranks No. 32 nationallytops among G5 programs in 247Sports' national class listings, and is winning a whole lot of head-to-head battles with other programs. The Mean Green have 12 players committed, including Lakeview Centennial safety Garnett Burk.

Burke chose UNT over an offer from SMU just last week.

UNT looked like it was running away from its longtime rival before the Mustangs picked up commitments from a series of highly regarded prospects who reported offers from the Mean Green in the last few days.

Offensive lineman Ben Sparks of Norman, Oklahoma; safety Karl Taylor of Midland Lee; offensive lineman Erin Smith of North Little Rock, Arkansas and offensive lineman Marcus Smith of Stafford all committed to SMU this month.

There is no telling if all of UNT's offers on those prospects were still valid after the Mean Green grabbed 12 players early.

What we do know is that SMU's class is sitting at No. 57 nationally and that UNT is recruiting against its neighbor to the south quite a bit this summer.

How both classes come together will make a big impact on how the rivalry shapes up over the next few years.

UNT is doing a great job. 

SMU going on a bit of a summer run doesn't change that.

What it does is give fans of both programs an interesting race to track over the next few months.

UNT finished No. 76 in 247Sports rankings for the 2019 class, just behind SMU. The Mustangs finished No. 69.

In 2018, SMU landed at No. 87 with UNT at No. 102. 

Could this be the year UNT jumps past the Mustangs? 

Stay tuned.

BRETT VITO can be reached at 940-566-6870 and via Twitter at @brettvito.

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