[Patrick Barron]

Jimmystats: 2019 Recruiting Comps: Defense Comment Count

Seth December 26th, 2018 at 9:41 AM

We did the offense already. Before we get into the defensive side of contextualizing the 2019 recruits against every Michigan guy since Bo, I want to give a shout-out to some other Tableizers. Jacedeuce gave me several suggestions I incorporated into the money graph, and Bo McReady (son of Bennie, godson of Oosterbaan) created this magnificent visual that you can spend the rest of vacation clicking over. For example if you select all the New England states you can see this view…


…that shows just seven players from the region from 1990-2013, and nine players in four classes since Don Brown arrived. Mouse over the 2016 and 2017 towers and you'll find Sean McKeon, Tarik Black, Andrew Stueber, Kwity Paye, and Ben Mason from the first two classes, all of whom are working out better than their rankings suggested they would. On the other hand recruiting rankings do strongly correlate with the likelihood of playing in the NFL. I've recreated his NFL chart so you can mouse over the individuals:

Our fun had, let's dive into the defense:

[Player-by-player discussion, after The Jump]


NT Mazi Smith


On my graphic above I have all the DTs in one group but it's helpful to separate the pure tackles like Mazi Smith from the heavy DE types like Chris Hinton. Terrance Taylor was more of a consensus top-100 type (at least to more than ESPN), but both were from western Michigan programs that believed in a lot of weight training. Mike Martin is probably the closer example if you consider ESPN too much of an outlier, but Martin as a prospect was memorably praised for his pad level (and compared to Taylor) while Smith's writeups make him seem more like a Mo Hurst-ish quick first step and knock him for getting too high. Martin's closer comp too was Ray Edmonds, who wrestled Luke Fickell for the state championships in high school but couldn't be turned into much of a football player.

DT Chris Hinton


Hinton was ranked as a strongside end for most of his recruitment, but five-star defensive tackles are often guys who are already at or long past 300 pounds and still moving like a high school linebacker. So for Hinton and Morris I created a temporarily collection of three- and five-techs who weren't really nose tackles but neither were they bound to stay on the edge. Chris Hinton is right near the top, though rated more along the lines of Juaquin Feazell—who played all over the line for the national champions—than Rashan Gary. Josh Williams is another highly rated comp. We call them Chris Wormley types but Wormley had a three-star ranking from Rivals that placed him down near Ryan Van Bergen. Hinton is considerably higher than that. Given his bloodlines, his noneventful recruitment, and the positional disagreement you can squint and still see the five-star he committed as. This is a huge get.

DT Michael Morris


Before I go back to my standard sort we can scroll down and see what kind of prospect Michael Morris's rankings say he'll be. The comps around him are pleasing. Nobody thought Matt Godin was a weakside end in his final rankings, but Morris is right around where Godin ended up. There's also a more classic Greg Mattison find in that range, Glen Steele. These tight end-ish DE/DT tweeners just below the four-star range tend become at least serviceable backups if not solid contributors or better, but not until a few years under Mattison's tutelage.

SDE Gabe Newburg


The middling three-star who didn't sniff a fourth is often a guy who takes some major projection and isn't so explosive that the recruiting sites think he's a ready-made outside linebacker. Don Brown has made a living at turning such types into Anchors for his defense, and Kwity Paye, whose ratings are an important tick above Gabe Newburg's, is the latest example of how that can work out. The other examples in proximity are last year's two high-upside swings, and of course Chris Rock. Since Brown's collection is a bit too recent. Brian suggested you can also probably find a few former productive Michigan State defensive ends who flew under the radar. I'm pretty sure he's conflating Marcu Rush, a "put some weight on him and see what you've got" linebacker convert, and Shilique Calhoun, a New Jersey product that Don Brown was after. If we didn't have Kwity pop this year I think Calhoun would have been the go-to example of what Michigan will have if Newburg pops.

WDE David Ojabo


You could count David Ojabo with those above if you like. He's in that just-below-four-stars range with Ron Johnson, Jibreel Black, Shelton Johnson, and Glen Steele, an important notch below the solid 4-stars like RVB. If he's a WDE/Edge player he's a larger Mario Ojemudia, or maybe a larger Chase Winovich. But remember Kwity Paye still works too.

Because you're putting weight on these guys—they are expected to play around 250/260—they take a lot of projection. Ojabo types used to be rated a lot lower because of that, but since they tend to turn into James Hall-quality pros (if not Ziggy Ansahs), these freakish edge dudes who need a lot of coaching and growth now peek into the four-star range, or collect just below it.

SAM Joey Velazquez


If the DEs take a little projection, placing Joey Velazquez at "SAM", a position I sorted with the weakside ends into an "Edge" group, takes a lot more of it. Even Josh Uche (6'3"/212 as a recruit) and Frank Clark (6'2"/205) were at least on the outside edge of linebacker size, while Velazquez looks like more of a safety. So again I mixed up my official groups to throw all the SAM/Viper objects into a pile.

Khaleke Hudson was of a size with Velazquez, but there's no Semper Fi video, and truthfully Hudson looked more 5'10" or 5'11" in those videos while Velazquez isn't lying—he looks like he's 6'2" or at least what the industry likes to call 6'2". The thing to like about him is his straight-line acceleration. That projects to a 230- to 240-pound edge specialist more in the vein of Uche after he's been in a college weight program. It should be noted that while this isn't a type we are familiar with at Michigan, Wisconsin proved you can turn that type of player into a Pro Bowler. And again we go back to Uche, and some of the similar players Don Brown recruited at Boston College and Connecticut for the position he literally calls "Edge." The five-star version of this is Cato June, fwiw.

MLB Charles Thomas


The sites had a wide spread on Charles Thomas: Rivals had him a middling 3-star, ESPN had him a top 300 guy and top 10 inside linebacker, and 247 split the difference. On the surface you wonder if that's a result of an IMG Academy guy who made super-early Top-100 lists but then left IMG for a Connecticut prep school and settled well outside the Top 300 by the end. He was also Michigan's first commit of the class and stuck around the whole time without a hint of looking elsewhere or of Michigan reconsidering.

The result is something around Kenny Demens, who also generated disagreement (especially because Michigan waited so long to offer him) and Chris Graham, who was considered undersized. That's an important step below the Ian Gold/Devin Bush range where "you're awesome but too small" spot but also well above the "you're right-sized but not instinctual enough" place they file a lot of middling middle linebackers. I'd keep the expectation closer to Demens. Harbaugh noted Thomas's speed and compared him to Devin Bush, though I'm not really buying that.

MLB Amauri Pesek-Hickson


We have to drop a ways down the interior linebacker list to get to Amauri Pesek-Hickson, but don't have to look very far for a comparable. Devin Gil was another safety-sized guy that nobody but Michigan knew about, and the sites didn't trust because he'd have to gain so much weight before becoming a contributor.

You can say "Gil" and call it a day, but Michigan has actually taken this type of shot a number of times. Lawrence Reid was becoming an excellent player but gets forgotten because he lost his senior year to a neck injury. Dhani Jones of course you've heard of, though few people had when he was recruited. And though he ended up outside (and later became a Hoke assistant), Roy Manning had an underrated career because Jim Hermann didn't value quicker linebacker types as much as he should have against the early spread and outside zone teams. Some misses at the type include Davion Rogers, John Spytek, Antonio Kinard, and Marrell Evans. It's a crapshoot whether you can get 30 pounds on a guy like that and keep his explosiveness and lateral agility, but when you do you get a pretty valuable, if underrated asset.

Viper Anthony Solomon


Michigan's every-down hybrid safety-linebacker is a different type of player, and though he's sort of similarly sized to Velazquez, Anthony Solomon is more of a pure hybrid in the Khaleke Hudson mold. Michigan hasn't recruited many of them—a lot of historical strong safeties filled a similar role so I added them in.

Since "hard-hitting safety" isn't as much of a thing in the slot receivers era, a common theme for these players is positional uncertainty. Charles Drake, Khaleke Hudson, and Cam Gordon were projected to offensive roles as recruits. Today a Daydrion Taylor type gets knocked down to the bottom of the four-star pile despite obviously four-star talent because their databases were formed after everyone's fourth linebacker morphed from "wolfman" etc. to a second safety, but before everyone's third linebacker went down the same path. Safety-shaped linebackers are part of most base defenses todays, and the recruiting sites are starting to get wiser to the fact, but sticking to "OLB" instead of inventing a new category. You can see the difference in the way Solomon is ranked versus Khaleke Hudson, despite almost identical profiles.

Safety Daxton Hill


Suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck it, Saban. The Bama flip (for just a few days but it counts) is one Michigan's highest-regarded recruits of all time and the best safety to commit to the Wolverines since as far back as we can track that sort of thing, unless you count Jabrill Peppers. Even "five-stars" Ernest Shazor, Tommy Hendricks and Ryan Mundy were more like top-30 types than top-10 recruits. All of them became long time contributors but not stars at Michigan, though Mundy had a pretty strong NFL career. However the elite realm that Daxton Hill occupies rarely whiffs.

Given he's projected to start next year in the Rover role (with Metellus taking over for Kinnel at free safety), you can kind of compare Hill to an early Jabrill Peppers, who lined up against slot receivers and matched them talent for talent while still fulfilling a safety's run responsibilities. When Peppers committed I did a rundown of historical DBs in his range across the country. It was…nice.

Safety Quinten Johnson


Michigan's other pure safety prospect is a way's down the list. I included a lot more guys in the screenshot to show you were Tyree Kinnel was, since I think they're similar guys, but Kinnel was well above the four-star line while Q-Jo is a bit below it. Delano Hill on the other hand is right there, and that's another comparison. Hill's speed and athleticism were underrated and his play was mostly understated, but his high draft grade and positive NFL career speak to how nice a boring safety can be. Jaylen Kelly-Powell is around there too but JKP was more "180" than 180, and was always expected to need 2017-'18 to put on weight before competing for a full time safety role.

Another guy in that mold was Marcus Ray, whose purposefully stupid takes these days are not at all representative of the heady, baiting, biting player he was. Ray was passed over by Ohio State and the recruiting industry as it was, but intelligence (Kinnel is another example) is a highly underrated quality in a deep safety.

Cornerbacks Jalen Perry and D.J. Turner II


Cornerback is a position where talent seems to translate directly to performance. There are all sorts of things a young cornerback can learn to become better at his position, but you can get most of the way there just by having the natural ability to be within a short radius of any target, especially in man-to-man coverages. This creates a rather hard distinction between Michigan's top-100 prospects—Marlin Jackson, Donovan Warren, Charles Woodson, Justin Turner, David Long, Jourdan Lewis, etc.—who tend to be Hit! or off-field issue, versus the Jeremy Clark, Troy Woolfolk realm where you might get a decent player but no early NFL picks. Both of Michigan's 2019 recruits at cornerback fall between these two categories, so projecting them is a little hard.

Here you're not making that big of a distinction between the lowest four stars and the highest three stars. Jalen Perry is the former, a consensus top 250 but not top 150 player to all the sites, long, and probably 10 or 15 pounds from his playing weight. Morgan Trent is a near example, and Andre Weathers is another. They weren't world beaters, but they were good enough to start awhile, usually as the #2 guy, and get drafted in a lower round.

DJ Turner II is the guy just below the four-star line, except ESPN likes him. Finding a likeness for him however is a bit more difficult unless you call him an Andre Weathers type as well. Turner had a weird high school career since he transferred to IMG Academy for playing time. He was obviously a cornerback at the next level but he played until his junior year at a Georgia powerhouse that needed him at free safety instead. As a cornerback he's kind of a Brandon Watson plus an inch and some speed—Turner has those long arms that should make him an A+ jam artist with some coaching. He also might be a bit suspect against super athletes. Gemon Green is in the same range as a prospect. There's also Will Peterson, a rotational guy on the '97 team who transferred to Youngstown State then Western Illinois, and went in the 3rd round. He later dropped his last name and used his middle name instead, becoming William James if that name rings a bell.

Size-wise they're both weirdly in between the two types Michigan likes to recruit. There are the 5'10" Blake Countesses on one side, and on the other the spindly tall types that they stocked up on last year. Highlight the cornerbacks on this viz to see what I mean:



December 26th, 2018 at 10:33 AM ^

It wasn't applicable to the defense article but while playing with the ht/wt viz I noticed NONE of Michigan's OL recruits who were 300+ pounds when they arrived have made it to the NFL.

That will change in the next few years since Ruiz, Onwenu and Bosch are all future pros, but it's more evidence that OL recruiting tends to overrate large high schoolers who dominate because they have 100 pounds on the kids opposite them, and underrate athleticism and overall dimensions that turn into NFL linemen, especially at tackle. I advocate taking a 6'7" tight end who is good at basketball every year.



December 26th, 2018 at 11:24 AM ^

As someone that's played and coached OL, that makes a lot of sense. Most of Wisconsin's star linemen were both ways players and tight ends in high school. Same with Iowa, there's a finite amount of 300+ pounders that can move well while carrying that amount of weight, and for the most part Bama ends up with a lot of them. 


December 26th, 2018 at 11:39 AM ^

I played against a couple of 6'4 to 6'7 300 pound guys in highschool and completely destroyed them while giving up 120 pounds and 7" to 10".  Most guys who carry that much weight in highschool are soft couch potatoes and they will always be soft.   You want a guy who is wrestling or playing basketball in the winter and throwing shot in the spring.  Eye of the Tiger is a real thing.  Glad we have Warinner.

After the 2013 OL class it feels like the 300+ high school 4* guy is fool's gold.


December 27th, 2018 at 8:20 AM ^

I agree with your take here. While Rumler is going to be very good at either guard or center the hope is to put that talent to use from the OG position. I am pretty sure it was Harbaugh who slotted Carpenter as the center from this group-and his HS coach said this as well. That this class is going to be able to come in and develop as a unit, most likely all red-shirting together, bodes very well for them...and Michigan football.

The increasing optimism around this OL group, in general and Barnhart in particular, is well-founded. Barnhart may (only) be from Paw Paw but if you watch this kid's tape you will see a natural athleticism that will translate very well on up the quality of play ladder-he may well be the LT of this group-as some analysts are suggesting. If Barnhart and Jones are the tackles, Keegan and Rumler the guards and Carpenter the center-with Stewart being the swing-man...my optimism for this OL gang will be through the roof! Stueber, Mayfield, Filiaga, Hayes...and if Ruiz palys 2 more seasons...Oh Yes!!! Add in "little" Myles and those Canton kids...and keep this OL rolling. 


Ron Utah

December 26th, 2018 at 10:47 AM ^

Quinten Johnson is underrated and has off the charts athleticism. Ojabo will be remembered as an absolute steal, but it will take some time for him to learn the game and add weight. 

Hill, Hinton, and Smith seem like sure things, with Perry in there as well. The rest of the class is loaded with athletes that require projections. Defenders change positions all the time, and there will always be a spot for guys like Velazquez who have the athleticism and just need to find a home. It will be interesting to see who pops, but this class is loaded with athletes and possibilities and sure to produce plenty of starters.

Also, these posts are awesome and Seth is amazing. 


December 26th, 2018 at 12:12 PM ^

Wow, I never realized that Luke Fickell was so big and was an absolute stud wrestler.  I just assumed that because he looked like Adam Sandler he was a little dweeb too.

I gained new respect for him.  That and he's not with Ohio State. 


December 26th, 2018 at 1:05 PM ^

If I'm reading the chart right our 5 stars have a six times greater chance of being drafted into the NFL than our 3 stars while our 4 stars have a three times greater chance. That only 10% of our 3 stars are getting drafted while over 50% of UM's class is 3 stars this year is probably not the ratio you want given the numbers the above. 


December 26th, 2018 at 1:39 PM ^

I thought about a useful/not useful split other than the NFL Draft, because the NFL is not a solid basis for how valuable a player was at Michigan. Jason Horn was an All-American and wasn't drafted. Jarrett Irons, Desmond Morgan, Roy Roundtree, Channing Stribling, Shawn Lazarus, Matt Lentz, Ben Braden, Steve Morrison, Tae Odoms, Thomas Gordon, Lawrence Reid, Grant Bowman, Matt Godin, Scott Dreisbach, JT Floyd, Reuben Riley, Troy Woolfolk, Mark Ortmann...all those guys were 3-stars who weren't drafted but if I could extend a scholarship to any of those guys again I definitely would. On the other hand some of our five-stars got drafted because they were five-star talents and yet did nothing in the NFL.

I agree it's not the ratio you want, but there are three-stars and there are underrated players, and I think this class has a lot of the latter. I'd take a David Ojabo over a guy like Tom Strobel, who got four stars by being closer to his ceiling. The staff thought Erick All was one of the top TEs on their board. Karsen Barnhart was just on the edge of four stars and coaches in the state like him a lot more than that "5-star" from Belleville that Michigan State got. Quinten Johnson appears to be a real find--the sites just didn't catch up. And anybody who say Mike Sainristil came away thinking this guy would be going to Ohio State if he was born in the Midwest. And while I don't see Devin Bush in Charles Thomas, the guys who thought Devin Bush was the best LB in his class three years ago say they see Devin Bush in Charles Thomas so that's nice.

I think this class in particular has a lot more of those late risers who didn't quite get to four stars. They are technically 3-stars but I show them as 3.5-stars and include their composite star ratings in order to show those aren't guys Michigan was just raiding from MAC schools because Bama took all the blue chips.

Contrast that with the 2011 class, which was thrown together at the last minute after Hoke was hired and included a bunch of fliers. The successful three-stars from that class:

  • Desmond Morgan: QB turned LB who started 4 years but wasn't drafted.
  • Frank Clark--who was downrated for off-field issues but became an NFL-caliber DE and didn't get booted until the end of his career
  • Thomas Rawls, who transferred before he did much good here because the same staff was playing Derrick Green over him.
  • Jack Miller, who started a season at C and wasn't very good.
  • Raymon Taylor, who was a meh starter at CB in an era that needed bodies

The other three-stars in that class: Russell Bellomy, Tony Posada, Chris Rock, Tamani Carter, Greg Brown, Keith Heitzman, Chris Barnett, Kellen Jones, Antonio Poole, Delonte Hollowell, Christian Bryant

There's a big difference between "Sure, might as well keep Antonio Poole in the class since we need bodies and maybe he'll work out," and "This Amauri Pesek-Hickson guy: this dude can BALL, how has nobody discovered him yet?"


December 26th, 2018 at 2:03 PM ^

The ability to see not the kid in front of you but what that kid can be. . . well, that's the work of great teachers and coaches. We know we have that in John Beilein, to an almost Boddhisatva degree, and now that Harbs and co. are really settling in, setting up their program and their style of play, I expect we see more and more rather than less of it. A certain kind of pros-ready player may not often have Michigan high on their list; we'll settle for clever, and EARN our championships. 


December 26th, 2018 at 2:29 PM ^

A few things...

I believe Ojabo, Barnahrt, and All are all composite 4 stars on 247. 

As far as deciding which 3 stars are good enough to accept commitments from, generally it's guys who have a lot of physical development left and end up changing positions (see Frank Clark and Chase Winovich), guys who have elite testing numbers (see Khaleke Hudson and Quinten Johnson), or guys who are from states that aren't heavily scouted (see Sean McKeon and Mike Sainristil). When you start accepting commitments from 3 star guys who don't fall into one of these categories you end up with a commitment list looking like this:

Devin Gil, Kingston Davis, Stephen Spanellis, Elysee M-bem Bosse, Nate Johnson, Eddie McDoom, Kurt Taylor, Phillip Paea, Joel Honigford, J'Marick Woods, and Andrew Steuber. In the 2019 class those guys would be Joey Velazquez, Quintel Kent, Gabe Newberg, George Johnson, Charles Thomas, Zach Carpenter, and DJ Turner.

You said you would extend scholarships to guys like Tae Odoms, JT Floyd, Troy Wolfolk, Mark Ortman, Desmond Morgan, etc. No offense to any of them because I think it's important we love and support all current and former players but those guys aren't the caliber of player you beat the OSU's, Bama's, Clemson's, and OU's of the world with. Just because they contributed on sub par Michigan teams doesn't validate that their recruiting ranking was incorrect, it just speaks to the dearth of talent inside the program during the Rich Rod years. 

The reality is even under Harbaugh our best players are our 4 and 5 star recruits and our weakest are our 3 star recruits. The OSU game singled out in explicit terms what happens when you have even one weak link let alone two when you can only put 11 guys on the field at once. The math says 5 star players have a higher chance of panning out then 4 stars, 4 stars then 3 stars, and on down the line. I'd rather see our coaches adhere to the math and give themselves the best possible chance of success, and that means not taking so may 3 star recruits. I don't think taking commitments from 14 three stars in one class is sound strategy when the numbers say only about 10% or 1.4 of those guys are going to get drafted into the NFL. Alabama figured this out before anyone, and that's why they only have 1(!) three star on their commit list right now. Urban had it figured out, Kirby is figuring it out, and so is Lincoln Riley right now. Hopefully Harbaugh can do the same.


December 27th, 2018 at 12:50 PM ^

I don't understand how the three star Mafia imagines Michigan's recruiting. Did they think Michigan is not trying to get the best players they can?

There are parts of the argument that are worth having and picking through but it's hard to do that when there is a fundamental misunderstanding of the goal here. Saying Michigan should recruit like Alabama is like saying Michigan win football games.

Maybe if we go through that list:

Devin Gil: heady player they were hoping could gain a lot of weight and also a better shot at landing Devin Bush, whom the staff recruited on a Rashan Gary level. Justifiable take unless it's a year when you have very few spots for that position.

Kingston Davis: everyone thought he was going to be a fullback and a good one but he wanted to play running back. Justifiable take most years because most guys like that will eventually move to their better position.

Stephen Spanellis: good example of the type of offensive lineman you should take every year. Has been productive in limited snaps and not a flight risk. 

Elysee M-bem Bosse: run stuffing type they took when other options went off the board. Only justifiable in that situation, would prefer someone with more upside.

Nate Johnson: Michigan thought they had a steal with this guy, talent was not a question. Career ended by off-field issues and Michigan added three guys like him in this class. Justifiable.

Eddie McDoom: speed and running ability were evident, staff thought they could coach him up into a major threat but he bailed before they could. Very justifiable recruitment: four-star level talent who immediately added value with high-upside

Kurt Taylor: was very determined to be in the class and Michigan made it clear they only would offer a scholarship in the end if they missed on other top targets and lost a running back in the class. That he did come was an indictment of the class, but at that point might as well use the scholarship on a 3rd down back and glue guy since you do need those. Michigan got Tru to be that so Taylor was processed. 

Phillip Paea: High-upside OL/DL prospect. Good kind of player to fill the back end of your class with because he could be a star and also gives you depth at multiple positions. Justifiable any year

Joel Honigford: the staff preferred kai-leon Herbert but once Herbert was gone they were happy to have Honigford. As I pointed out in this thread later down, you are more likely to get a great player out of a developer with good bend and intelligence than a hefty 300-pounder with a 4th star. Take most years.

J'Marick Woods: won a spot on the two-deep almost immediately so it's pretty hard to argue another prospect they could have gone after instead of sticking to this satellite camp commit would have done better. Take most years: smarts in a safety is underrated.

Andrew Steuber: should have been a four star. This is a guy the staff saw in a camp setting and wanted immediately, and as soon as they could they told anybody who would listen that this was one of their best ol prospects in years. Seems on track to make good on that assessment. If you can get a guy like this every year you will have a very good offensive line.

There is quite a range of players in that list. Without hindsight it's hard to see how many of them could have been replaced with better players. There are lessons you can learn to make better recruiting decisions in the future, for example guys with off-field issues you can hide at Michigan State are not worth the scholarship offer for Michigan, since when they screw up you are going to lose them. If Michigan could beat Ohio State and go to the playoffs I think they would get more interest and have more options, but I also think they are doing a really good job of recruiting with what they have. They are certainly much better at turning up talent in their own evaluations than previous Michigan coaches.


December 27th, 2018 at 9:08 AM ^

Excellent, excellent points. However, the "however" is huge here. Clearly Jim Harbaugh's criteria for recruiting is going to increase the difficulty of establishing Michigan's position as a destination place for elite HS football players. Evidently Coach Harbaugh believes that Michigan is going to have to fight its way up the recruiting ladder with a higher than optimal number of 3***. The good news of this 2019 class is that the 3*** appear to have significant potential-and I don't believe this is simply wishful thinking. When you go down that list of 3*** there is a lot to be optimistic about. First and foremost, these kids are FOOTBALL PLAYERS...these kids bring it...they are competitors...and they are smart. But the coaches are going to have to step up here and do yeoman's work to get these kids to a place where they can flip Michigan into a destination for elite HS players.  


December 26th, 2018 at 4:27 PM ^

the divide has always been about whether 4/5 star players are 'better' to land than 3*... and at the macro level, I think that this is not even an argument.

we are talking about probabilities when it comes to recruiting in general. 

a roster of 5* players is going to be better than a roster of 3* players... I am not sure why people continue to argue against that.

it doesn't mean there isn't good 3* players at all, rather that if you took 25 5* players and 25 3* players, it is much more likely that the 5 stars would perform better than the 3*s.

Not all of them, but the majority of them...


December 26th, 2018 at 1:49 PM ^

1. That metric will mean less and less as the recruiting analysts become less reliable. Guys like Velazquez, APH and Thomas may well be under rated. Even at that, the low rating is 3.5*.

2. I care more about how guys do in college than in how high they get drafted. Mike Hart (too small for the NFL) is the perfect example. I'm happy to have an unranked Glasgow. I'll happily take a Jordan Kovacs, a Roy Manning or a Patrick Omameh. Remember, the NFL makes mistakes too.

Rufus X

December 26th, 2018 at 3:27 PM ^

Not to get too obscure, but I don't see Kerwin Waldroup anywhere in this data (although it is tough to find a specific player so maybe I am just missing him).  Walrdroup was a early-90s DE/Edge recruit who was an absolute physical freak. Ended up transferring due to some "team rule" issues that I won't get into, but he did get drafted by the Lions and played a couple years. Physically an incredible specimen.  Probably would be at least a 4 star player today. Not the brightest guy on the team, though. Got into serious trouble with the law after his playing career was over.

I think it is very interesting how the start-equivalent ratings are derived in the Moeller era, back when it was only Tom Lemming, Superprep, and USA Today All American teams. 


December 27th, 2018 at 10:46 AM ^

I think Sean McKeon's ranking is accurate. He is what he appears to be... a depth guy. Honestly, him be a starter says that other guys with higher HS rankings are not playing up to their perceived ability.

I'm hoping the position is upgraded next season and McKeon isn't counted on the be an integral part of the offense. Blocking scheme or otherwise.