College football recruiting remains a marathon and not a sprint.
Over the coming months, rankings will change, especially with challenges that continue to be presented because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
One thing is clear, though: There is no one path to success on the recruiting trail. Alabama's 2021 class, for example, finished first nationally but took some time to develop and didn't crack the top 10 until last July.
Conversely, Tennessee and Minnesota were examples of classes that came out the gate ranked among the top 10 a year ago before ultimately landing at Nos. 19 and 31, respectively, on national signing day in February.
Ohio State has shown it's possible to steer a strong start to an equally strong finish, never falling below No. 2 during the 2021 cycle. Now, the Buckeyes are striving to exhibit equally impressive consistency for 2022.
While time will tell how this class takes shape, here is a look at 10 classes to keep an eye on as they are leading the pack in the early stages of the 2022 cycle.