Things were lookin’ up for McKeon last year. Is that a thing? [Upchurch]
One of the things I’d like to start tracking better in recruiting data are deltas: how much each player’s crootin numbers move over the course of his recruitment. I’ve been updating my spreadsheets a bunch the last few weeks as the sites put out their final rankings, and I fortuitously backed up the data on New Year’s Day so I have a decent snapshot right now of how much the rankings moved from the end of the season to when the services redid their final rankings for this week.
Unfortunately this doesn’t include the two guys who committed last week, since I grabbed their ratings only when those announcements hit. Wanna see?
|Player||Pos||Stars||RR||Nat Rk||Pos Rk||☆/5|
First a few words on what we’re looking at and how to react to things. The “☆/5” is my own conversion of the ratings and position rankings the sites provide so I can judge them all against each other. It’s imperfect.
Don’t pay attention to small changes in rankings, and the further down they start the larger delta you need to discount. That’s an effect of other guys shooting up the rankings and pushing everybody below them down a bit, not a new opinion on our guy. This is normal and happens every year. You’ll note Rivals didn’t make a lot of changes among their three-stars but fiddles with the guys in the top of the rankings a lot, part of a larger tendency to focus on the headline-grabbers.
Rivals, like the other services, starts stingier with their 4- and 5-star ratings to leave room for the inevitable risers. You can prove this yourself: go on the Rivals database and count how many guys in the 2019 class have a 6.1 (five stars) or 6.0 (highest four-stars). It’s 12 and 35—half as many as any year prior. Rest assured that’ll be more like 25-30 in the 6.1 range and 70-80 who get 6.0s by this time next year. That’s how Otis Reese jumped to a 6.0 while slipping 14 spots in the national rankings—what that means is he didn’t move while data on other guys filled in around him.
[Hit THE JUMP to see where everyone moved]
The guy Rivals most changed their minds on was Aiden Hutchinson, who leapt from an unranked low four-star to nearly top 125. They also changed his weight by +18 pounds and moved him into their SDE rankings. Jaylen Mayfield got a fourth star and is ranked right behind OSU commit/#244 overall Max Wray among offensive tackles, so it appears Mayfield missed the Rivals250 by an inch. Cam McGrone rose moderately. Their feelings on Joe Milton cooled some despite his positional ranking holding firm—that may be a result of which camps/all star games he attended since it’s a relatively minor fall. All the other deltas are so small as to be barely worth discussing. Let’s go to the next.
So 247 had a lot more movement overall, even after you dutifully ignore the big swings in national rankings from the fill-in effect. They like to tinker with their ratings a lot more often—some of these ratings have changed multiple times in the last few weeks.
Again Hutchinson and McGrone made big leaps, with McGrone getting into five-star range. Otis Reese moved into the top 100 while hanging onto his positional ranking. Mustapha Muhammad also held onto his positional ranking but dropped 72 spots within the Top247 as well as two ratings. They also downgraded Joe Milton to a three-star and dropped him from a pile of guys hanging around the margin of their Top247 to far out of it. Jaylen Mayfield got downgraded a bit as 247 jammed their new favorites into the Top 100 but he’s still pretty highly rated here.
Dropped off the map. I have data up to when that happened but no new data since their server is now vaporized. I hope they decide to bring it back once the confused Scout subscribers are used to the merger. It’s a real bummer that we’ve lost a ranking system since Rivals and 247 tend to have disagreements it’d be nice to triangulate against a third party, and ESPN, well, ESPN…
|Player||Pos||Stars||E Rtg||Nat Rk||Pos Rk||☆s/5|
ESPN fires and forgets. Other than a small adjustment to Aidan Hutchinson you could describe ESPN’s final rankings tweak as “We decided McGrone is pretty good.” ESPN tends to rank every player and put out a good scouting report at the time of his commitment, and then they don’t move much. This makes them less useful than the others for ranking purposes but quite useful for Hello posts that come a day or two late.
What does that mean for our purposes? It probably means you can’t take their outlier position on Mustapha Muhammad as gospel since he fell across the other sites. However when a guy does move it’s got to be more than a shift (or it could be they signed up for the ESPN showcase game).
THINGS WE LEARNED
Gonna post this next one as a graphic because it lets me use all the table tools in Excel for our money chart:
(arrows don’t match heat scheme because Microsoft won’t let you flip those)
Every site moved Hutchinson and McGrone up some. The two sites that seemed to be paying attention moved Joe Milton down. The Mayfield movement seems to have been toward a middle ground between 247 and Rivals. And apparently 247 finally saw whatever Rivals and ESPN (and Greg Mattison) did in Taylor Upshaw, who’s now a high 3-star to everybody.
This is the kind of thing that will be useful after I’ve been doing it for years and can compare the deltas of recruiting rankings to success on the field. Unfortunately that usefulness appears to have a soft cap at the four star types, since getting a re-rank of the guys lower down, especially from Rivals and ESPN, is rare.