February 10th, 2011 at 9:37 PM ^

Interesting article, we think we have it bad when it comes to only taking kids that do well academically... Stanford's success is pretty impressive, really, especially if they can only recruit 250 or so players like it says in the article.


February 10th, 2011 at 9:46 PM ^

Stanford is limited in who they can go after, but they are also the very best academic school in the country (among those playing big time sports).  Even great schools like Duke, Northwestern, ND, Vandy, and the top public universities aren't in the same league with a school battling it out with Harvard, Yale, and Princeton to top the USNEWS rankings.  Not to mention the California location doesn't hurt when compared with Durham or South Bend.

They certainly have some handicaps in recruiting, but they also shoot to the top of the list for any kid who has academics as his top priority.  Combine that with a great athletic program across the board and a solid football history and coaches having success there shouldn't come as a huge surprise.


February 10th, 2011 at 10:10 PM ^

True, but the amount of five -- or even high four -- star talent with five star brains is extremely low. They have everything to offer to these kids (at least they do now with all of the success that they've enjoyed recently), but there aren't enough of these kids to fill an entire roster of elite talent.


February 10th, 2011 at 10:15 PM ^

Just that, much like Zone Left's post below points out, Stanford wins by a pretty wide margin for most folks making the "What is the best university I could attend?" analysis.  I feel a lot sorrier for schools with similar admissions restrictions that inevitably lose that comparison if they go up against the Cardinal.



February 11th, 2011 at 12:20 AM ^

Spending 4 years in Palo Alto vs 4 years in any of the "Southern Ivies" is a no brainer for most smart recruits I would think. Also, the majority of the Southern Ivies have little to no football heritage to speak of. Palo Alto is paradise and Stanford does have football pedigree even if most of it hasn't been very recent (until Harbaugh of course).

Zone Left

February 10th, 2011 at 9:50 PM ^


"James Vaughters, a four-star linebacker and 4.0 student from Stone Mountain, Ga., who wants to study architecture, said he picked Stanford 'when someone told me, 'If you get hurt at so-and-so school, would you still want to be there, or would you want to be somewhere else?' The only place I could say that about was Stanford.'"


That is the one question every single kid needs to ask themselves during the recruiting process and one of the questions that isn't asked enough.  I think most kids commit to a coach, a location, a depth chart, and a scheme instead of asking where they'll be happiest and what's the best place for them outside of football.  Even the kids who, say, grow up as Michigan fans need to really ask if Ann Arbor and Michigan is the best spot for them beyond wanting to wear a winged helmet (I wouldn't succeed here).


February 10th, 2011 at 11:50 PM ^

Yeah, something always seemed a little odd about him.  His blog says he has a 1230 SAT, which is respectable for a two part SAT but a 22 ACT which corresponds to a 1030 SAT.  Yet he supposedly took calculus as a sophomore in high school which is impressive even for a real math geek.  He's undoubtedly sharp by any measure and off the charts intelligent for a top D-1 prospect.  Nevertheless, I could never reconcile his test scores with his grades and academic achievments.  He might simply be a bad test taker or his high school was grade inflated and not at all rigorous.


February 11th, 2011 at 12:18 AM ^

I feel like it could go either way. Something is just out if place. Many say that the ACT is not a very good measure because it takes measures and how you were performing on one day and under a lot of pressure so that might skew the results. Versus the GPA which measures how well you can perform over an extended period of time, but the ACT gages how well you can perform under pressure which is important and is a very good indicator of how naturally smart one may be, where GPA shows if they're a hard worker.


February 11th, 2011 at 8:18 AM ^

I'm a big fan of Stanford, expecially considering the emphasis they put on academics.  It's nice to see that student athletes consider Michigan to be of the same caliber.