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Mid-South Spotlight: Five intense recruiting battles

Javien Toviano
Javien Toviano

Early Signing Day is less than three months away as programs across the country look to finish off the 2023 recruiting cycle with key pieces that can contribute at the next level. With time in the cycle winding down, top prospects are at the center of some intense battles down the stretch.

Here are five Mid-South recruitments that are drawing a lot of attention from the recruiting world.

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MORE: Five intense East Coast recruiting battles

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Main Contenders: Oklahoma, Texas A&M

Hicks will make his college decision on Wednesday as he has moved his initial timeline of early January up nearly four months. Oklahoma got him on campus during the summer and made a huge splash, but Texas A&M has welcomed him in twice so far this season.

The Sooners hold the edge in the Rivals FutureCast, but that won't stop Texas A&M from making a push all the way up until he decides on Wednesday.

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Main Contenders: LSU, Michigan, Oregon, Texas A&M

Toviano has done a good job of keeping his recruitment very quiet when it comes to potential leaders, but the four aforementioned programs hold an edge over the rest of his top schools.

LSU is probably the program with the edge at the moment after a big trip to Baton Rouge earlier this fall, but Texas A&M and Michigan have stayed in the mix as well. Oregon was Toviano's dream school growing up, but a visit to Eugene is necessary over the course of the next few weeks for the Ducks to have a shot.

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Main Contenders: Mississippi State, Texas A&M, Vanderbilt

Smith has taken two official visits to Vanderbilt and Texas A&M with the latter coming earlier this month to College Station. In-state Mississippi State held the edge coming out of the summer, and that still rings true with more programs getting seriously involved as the cycle winds down. A safe bet would be on the Bulldogs landing him when it's all said and done.

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Main Contenders: Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas A&M

Despite decommitting from Texas A&M over the summer, Bowens most likely ends up back in the Aggies' 2023 class. However, a visit to Oklahoma this past weekend and an official visit to Oregon this upcoming weekend has created some mystery ahead of his decision.

A big weekend in Eugene could sway things in favor of the Ducks as this one still remains up for grabs.

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Main Contenders: Georgia, Oklahoma, TCU, Texas, USC

Deal has intentionally taken his time with his recruitment, but some main contenders are starting to shape up. Of the five contenders, Texas and Georgia probably have the best shot with the latter having hosted Deal for an official visit this past weekend.

This recruitment could go in multiple directions and it's one that could come down to the final hours ahead of National Signing Day.