May 17th, 2012 at 9:11 AM ^

Everyone loves to say this ridiculous misnomer. Taco has addressed this one many times. He starts in the 4-3 and every other defense that his team runs besides the 3-4. When they run the 3-4, he comes out. If everyone wants to overreact and call that "not starting" then more power to ya, but it's similar to saying Chris Leak didn't start for Florida because he came out when they would run their Tebow packages.


People will play with the facts to prove their point, but this is a common misconception. If people want to say he is ranked appropriately because he hasn't proven enough in pads on the field that is one thing. But to say he is ranked so low because he "didn't start" is a very buckeye thing to say.


May 17th, 2012 at 9:55 AM ^

Yes...and if he's such a superstar - one of the top 300 players in the country - you would think they could find a place for him in their 3-4 package.

I'm not saying Charlton is a bad player.  All I'm saying is that if he were the absolute beast that many of you seem to think he is, then he would be on the field 100% of the time in every defensive package.  He's not.  Do you really think Pickerington Central is so stacked with talent that they could remove a truly elite player from their defense and be great?  I doubt it.  So maybe, just maybe, Charlton has some weaknesses that the coaches are trying to hide from opposing teams.


May 17th, 2012 at 10:27 AM ^

Actually yes, they were stacked last year, see their state title run.

He is an athlete making the transistion to full-time football player. He was more basketball player then football player last season. BTW, yes he does start, Allen Trieu has addressed this as well.


May 17th, 2012 at 11:30 AM ^

Last year, Pickerington Central had four players rated by Rivals (the only four from the school who signed with a D1 team).  One was Jacoby Boren, who could have played on the DL, but probably wasn't an end.  The other three were two scrawny receivers, and a big 2-star LB who went to Kent State.  He could have started over Taco as a D1 player a year above him. The 2012 class also had a DT and OL in their database, but who did not report any offers, so one of both of them could have played over Taco on the DL.   In this class, there are no Pickerington Central players with D1 offers. 

Sure, his HS had talent, but if a guy is elite talent, the coach would start him somewhere, since he didn't exactly have college-level players at all the DL/OLB spots. 

NOLA Wolverine

May 17th, 2012 at 12:23 PM ^

Does anyone know how often they run 3-4? Because that's a pretty relevant issue in this argument. If they're only running the 3-4 5-10% of the time, it would be a lot more likely that no one else rushes off the end like Taco from the DL and the coaches want LB's out there to provide that outside pressure while Taco gets a rest. Not a whole lot of schools have big lanky athletes that can rush off the edge worth a damn. Let alone two. 

EDIT: Doesn't matter, as this is a moot point anyways (as pointed out by someone who actually watched the tape below). I guess whether or not your a project you need to know the playbook the instant you start playing. Learning reads for a couple weeks is unacceptable.  


May 17th, 2012 at 12:41 PM ^

Don't do the whole "shouldn't you be _____ right now?" because it just makes you look like an asshole.  I'm sure we should all be doing something other than writing on a blog right now, to be honest.  I don't know what you do, Panther5, but shouldn't you be working or studying or making your bed right now?  Probably.  So save the shit just because someone disagrees with you on the internet.


May 17th, 2012 at 9:46 AM ^

You make it seem so crazy.  He did not start in the 3-4 formations.  It like a RB doesnt start if they come out in a 5 wide set to start the game nobody would be going insane over that.  So its greatly overblown, and I would have hoped somebody with your Recruiting background would have caught that.


May 17th, 2012 at 9:57 AM ^

This is discussed above.

I don't think it's crazy at all.  Michigan fans think it's crazy that he's not SUPER ELITE AWESOME to every service.  Meanwhile, Pickerington Central's coaches think he's not good enough to play in their 3-4.

Perhaps the compromise is that he's not one of the best 300 players in the country.  Crazy, ain't it?


May 17th, 2012 at 10:36 AM ^

First you said it was because he didn't start. Now you're saying it's because he wasn't good enough to play every down.  So does that mean you're retracting your first claim?

I don't really care where he's ranked.  But if you're going to change your argument, you're pretty much saying your first reason was wrong.


May 17th, 2012 at 11:13 AM ^

I agree with Magnus on this.  It doesn't matter how you word it, whether you say he "didn't start" or "doesn't play in all of their packages" or what it is - it all boils down to that Taco doesn't quite have the on-field production to be ranked as an elite DE at this point. 

Regardless of how "stacked" Pickerington Central was last year, if Taco was elite, they never would have taken him off the field.  I promise that guys like Adolphus Washington and Se'von Pittman were a part of all of their teams' packages, and they looked like stars on the field, in addition to impressing at camps. 

It's been said from the beginning that Taco is a bit of a project.  He's new-ish to football and has a lot of technique to work on.  That doesn't mean he's a bad offer, but it likely affects his ranings.

Most 4-star players have 1) impressive film, 2) impressive camp work-outs, and 3) impressive offer lists.  At this point, Taco really has one of those three.  It is what it is.


May 17th, 2012 at 2:27 PM ^

You may agree that he has not earned a higher ranking yet.  He may or may not. I don't really care what the services say about him.  I have no problem with him being ranked a 3* or 4*. But your reasons were not what Magnus originally gave as his reason.  He changed it to something more like yours when the statement was called into question.  That's the problem some have, not that he doesn't think he deserves to be a lock for a star upgrade (whatever that matters).


May 17th, 2012 at 2:32 PM ^

My statement didn't change at all.  He doesn't start.  He plays 50% of the time.  He's essentially a platoon player.  If you have a right-handed first baseman and a left-handed first baseman who start depending on who play 50% of the time each, depending on whether a righty or lefty is pitching that day, that doesn't fit my definition of "starter."


May 17th, 2012 at 2:23 PM ^

Thus the term "start" in there. It would depend on their base defense.  If he is in their base defense, but taken out in certain situation, then he's a starter. If he's only put in on certain rare formations, then he's not. Most players are in some way "situational", outside of the QB and offensive linemen.  And depending on who you play and how you adjust your defense for someone, that can change. Sam Sword was a starter. He didn't play nearly as much in the Rose Bowl in '98. Didn't keep him from being a starter.  

If there were guys in front of him and he wasn't listed as first string, then he wasn't a starter. Fine. But you don't have to play every down to be a starter. That might make you an every down player, but not a starter. Stop changing the definitions just because you may have given an inaccurate reason to begin with.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:33 PM ^

If you haven't noticed, when the guy is wrong or doesn't have an aswer, he tries to make you feel like you're a moron.


Funny what a computer and a website does to some people.


It is obvious he doesn't fact check, and anyone who does is simply wrong.


I sued to be a fan of this guy, but not so much anymore.


May 17th, 2012 at 9:39 AM ^

None of those changes seem all that surprising... particularly since most of them are within 10 spots, which is pretty insignificant in the grand scheme of things (within the 4* group). 

Very excited to see Dawson and Lewis move up so far... almost 100 spots for Dawson!


May 17th, 2012 at 11:17 AM ^

He did start....he didn't start. 3*....4*...5*, I dont care about any of that. He looked great at camp. He's big and fast and he's excited about playing in AA. That makes him 5* in my book. Can't wait to see him play.


May 17th, 2012 at 11:25 AM ^

C'mon folks... whether he did start or he didn't start... whether he's a 3 star or a 4 star... don't we all agree we are glad to have him commited to play for Michigan??  I mean, I'm not sure I see why there's all of this bickering when I think we all like him and expect him to do well.

Plus, his name is Taco, fergodsakes.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:19 PM ^

I've seen Pick play 4 times in the last two years. Taco is a great athlete and good at getting by smaller, slower OL. He hasn't been able to put the whole thing together at any point yet, though. He's like a poor man's Vern Gholston. The Pick Central coaches are good and they (and the fans I've talked to) think he's a liability in any run situation. He saw the field probably 50% of the time last year. I know you're gonna say this is trolling, but remember: Ohio State ALWAYS is in on Pick kids. And we didn't offer him. And just last year, our coaches were at Pick a lot because of Boren so they saw him often. For now, he's an athlete, not a football player. That may change in time. If anyone can round the kid out, it'll be Mattison.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:33 PM ^

I'll probably get negged for agreeing with a Buckeye, but this post reflects what I've heard.  He's a pass rush specialist and has little awareness of the run game.  Being a situational player means it's quite possible you're not in the top 300 prospects in the country.  And that's fine.  But Michigan fans shouldn't be up in arms about it.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:47 PM ^

And Braxton Miller was a 'situational' QB who could run the ball like a deer, but couldn't pass it worth beans coming into college, but he was a high 4*/5*.

Taco just started taking football seriously.  He has physically and mentally grown.  While his stature will obviously limit him against the run early on, the pass rushing skills and athleticism are elite enough to easily warrant him 4* status.

What happens when he not only gains some more weight/muscle and actually learns how to play football?  Having an exceptionally high ceiling (or unlimited potential) is part of rankings too.  That is a reason why Taco is rated so high by some services already.



May 17th, 2012 at 12:52 PM ^

Braxton Miller was a full-time starter at quarterback, not a situational starter. Your analogy doesn't work.

Some sites are absolutely justified in ranking him highly, if they're looking at potential.  That doesn't mean Scout is wrong for putting him outside the top 300.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:37 PM ^

Thanks for your viewpoint. 

I'm not too worried about OSU not offering him mostly because you guys took so many incredible DEs last year that he wasn't really a prioroty.  This is like us passing up on a pretty solid guard next year or something, not because he isn't a olid player, but because we took so many great ones this year. 

I think you're dead on regarding Taco.  He's a project recruit with a very high ceiling.  I just feel like that was spelled out plainly when he committed, but so many people around here want him to be more than that.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:38 PM ^

I cannot disagree with you or Mangus more.

Taco is far from the same player he was 9 months ago.  Players should be ranked on their performance now, not waht they were/did almost a year ago.  He has obviously increased his physical stature immensely, and since he has been focusing on soley football at camp after camp and absorbing a ton of football, and dominating while at it, the kid should without a doubt be rated higher than what he is.


Why update ANYONES rankings then, if you need to see what they do this upcoming season?  Right now, all services are updating/raising/lowering players rankings based on camp settings, and Taco should not be the only outlier.



May 17th, 2012 at 12:43 PM ^

His performance now includes one-on-one drills and no pads.  So he shouldn't be judged on what he did in pads and in games, but on how quickly he ran around some 6'2", 260 lb. kid who's headed to a D-II school and then slapped a dummy?

I disagree.

He'll get a chance to prove his actual football skills in the fall.  It's not like it actually matters what his rating is in May 2012, if ever.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:49 PM ^

So why are 300 other players moving up and down based on this same criteria you are saying Taco SHOULDNT be adjusted for?

EIther don't adjust rankings for anyone based on camps but do so for games, or adjust everyone equally according to both.  And the latter is what should be done.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:54 PM ^

I've mentioned this several times before, but I really don't care about camps.  I'm not saying other prospects SHOULD be moving up and down based on their camp performances.  Maybe they are, maybe not.  There shouldn't be a double standard for Charlton, but the point is that he might be the #301 player in the country, so what's the point of worrying about why he's not #298?


May 17th, 2012 at 12:54 PM ^

What if you don't feel a player's camp performance warrants a change?  Then what? 

All I'm saying is maybe Scout saw what he did, and feels that it agrees with his ranking.  Has Taco gone to any camps where he went up against 4/5 star OTs?  Or where he was doing drills with other 4/5 star DEs?  I don't think he has, outside of Mathis, who outperformed Taco. 

David Dawson's camp performance helped him, because he went against David Price, a highly rated DT.  I don't know that Taco's performances set him a part from anyone.


May 17th, 2012 at 1:16 PM ^

Kids move up after camp performances based on the questions about him as a player. If a scouting service is questioning a kids speed and then he goes out and runs a 4.4, then the question is answered and he moves up. In Taco's case, scouts are questioning his ability to be an every down player who can make an impact on any type of play. Camp's don't present an opportunity for him to answer that, only games do. That's why he didn't move.


*Edit: Sorry WolvinLA2, didn't see that you had posted almost the exact same thing.


May 17th, 2012 at 12:46 PM ^

Because here's why - the big complaint on Taco is his ability in run support.  No one doubts his ability as a pass rusher.  In camps, he primary only does pass rush drills, so although his strengths are shown, he doesn't have the ability to disprove his weaknesses.  So in his case, the camps do little good to boost his rankings.

Think of a basketball recruit who is a great shooter, but has sub-par ball-handling skills, and is ranked lower because of it.  Then, over the summer, he wins a bunch of 3-point shooting competitions.  Should his ranking go up?  Probably not, because we knew he was a great shooter, and 3-pt contests don't show us if his ball-handling has improved or not. 


May 17th, 2012 at 1:05 PM ^

You know that the great part about all of this is?  Taco will show up to campus in a little over a year 4th on the depth chart behind 3 non-seniors.  He won't have a realistic shot at seeing the field for the first two years he's on campus, meaning he can redshirt, work on his strength and technique, and learn from more polished DEs for a while.  Then when he's a RS soph, it will be a Taco-Ojemudia battle for the WDE spot, and by then Taco should be much nearer his potential, and we'll have two very good WDEs playing for us.

I'm coining this now, way ahead of time.  Our 2015 WDE: Tacojemudia. 


May 17th, 2012 at 1:36 PM ^

really C'MOM MAN! When is scout going to give the TOP 50 players 5 stars. Nice to see the Cass Tech kid's get some love,D2 will keep moving up he is a beast! GO BLUE!!!