Bust or sleeper? Five-star recruits won't always be stars on the field

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  • Tommy2Shoes Lehi, UT
    Feb. 3, 2011 9:04 a.m.

    Sometimes you find the diamond in the rough. BYU find them all the time because we have to. So does BSU and Utah. Utah will definately have the PAC12 edge going forward especially if they ever win a Rose Bowl game. Let's cheer for both schools to succeed. I'll always cheer for my Alma Mater BYU but I refuse to hate any school.

  • Where's Stockton ??? Bowling Green, OH
    Feb. 2, 2011 8:53 p.m.

    Actually it's about 75% for 5's but drops to about60% for 4's. But these are the crem de crem so obviously it's going to come out higher than 50/50 it's the 2's and 3's that are the challenge to predict.


  • crowntown1 Corona, CA
    Feb. 2, 2011 5:43 p.m.

    Heart doesn't win Championships! It helps but Athletes, Speed do!

  • Duckhunter American Fork, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 4:23 p.m.


    I don't know what the percentages are but I think most people agree that the kids actually given the highest ratings are good players and most will pan out. Where the ratings fail is with alot of the kids given 2 and 3 star ratings.

    I would love to see a breakdown but simple numbers alone would seem to say that more 2-3 star rated kids turn out to be top players than 4 and 5 star kids. Mainly because there are more 3 star kids by multiples of 10 than there are 4 and 5 star combined.

    There are about 30 5 star rated players and about 150 4 star players. I think there are around 120 D1 schools. Only 2 schools got more than 2 of the 5 stars and only the top 10 schools got double digit 4 stars. all the 4 and 5 stars added together only make up about the same number as total D1 schools.

    Niether BYU or utah is going get that many of them ever. They are always going to have to make do with 3 star kids and occasionally pick off some 4 stars. Just how it is.

  • slcftball Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 3:55 p.m.

    Hate to tell you....but the stars and recruiters are correct 90 percent of the time on 4 and 5 star kids. Now, some people do sometimes emerge and weren't noticed, and everyone loves the walk-on to scholarship kids. But those 4 and 5 star kids that are ranked high can play except for the occasional 10 percent. 90 percent is pretty good odds.......

  • Just Truth Saratoga Springs, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 3:36 p.m.

    I love watching players with heart over stars any day.

  • Where's Stockton ??? Bowling Green, OH
    Feb. 2, 2011 2:18 p.m.

    Stars don't really tell you how well a player will play at the next level. At The Silver Dome when BYU lost to Marshal I gave a whole slew of clippings on Ben Rothlesburger from just his Senior year... to one of Edwards assistants. He looked at them and said he'd never heard of him... but said he'd look them over and pass them on. Not unusual since Ben only played Quarterback his Senior year at Findly H.S... just down the road 22 miles from here in Bowling Green, Ohio. He'd been pretty much relagated to playing a receiver since his coaches son was a year older and already playing the QB position...though never as good as Ben did in that one season. I spoke to Ben once and asked him if he'd heard of BYU. He began by talking about Steve Young...so obviously he had. I asked him if he'd consider playing at BYU. He laughed...then smiled and said I'll play anywhere they let me throw the ball and I don't have to play behind a coaches son. Ben literally came out of nowhere.


  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 2:05 p.m.

    Re: Duckhunter

    Do you use lower case for proper names related to Utah or Ute fans as a juvenile form of disrespect, or are you just a careless typist?

  • Where's Stockton ??? Bowling Green, OH
    Feb. 2, 2011 1:47 p.m.


    In some ways you miss some of the really good points. BYU has done very well..in fact... downright exceptionally well despite the lack of 4&5 star recruits. It has a National Championship. It has a Heisman Trophy. And it has numerous other best at position trophies like The Outland...the Butkus... the Davey O'Brian and the Doke Walker...plus a fair list of All Americans most of whom were barely 1's or two's. We're definitely not an Alabama or even in the same level of play as Half of the SEC. If we were... we'd be getting some of those Defensive Corners and Safety's we've never been able to attract...despite our Winter's here in the Rockies. The one aspect that's missing here is that the Mountain West is growing so fast and soon to become a megametro area. It's just now barely coming into it's own. There's a rich array of really good athletes here who are only now being discovered...and like it or not Utah, BYU and USU almost have an exclusive here. All 3 programs will grow more successful from here.

  • TheHailstorm South Weber, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 1:36 p.m.

    Duck Hunted;
    " Still waiting on all those 4 star guys to appear on the list. LOL

    Duckhunter | 8:45 p.m. Jan. 30, 2011
    American Fork, UT
    Sounds like "hope" is all they have. They sure don't have many "commits".


    19 recruits signed so far, moved up 4 spots on nations recruiting list for colleges, 2-4 star athletes. Average--2.95'
    Glad to see that you managed a diploma from Provo High. Weren't accepted into college were you.
    That Geneva ground water has leached into your coconut. Stay out of the marches in West Orem and seek proffesional help.. your not funny and the delusion that you think your clever has become an addiction.
    Please seek help.

  • Duckhunter American Fork, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 1:29 p.m.

    howard are you trying to compete with wedgie and christina for biggest dimwit?

    No one says the star system is completely worthless, just that it has limitations. I'm not sure why you love it so much considering that utah isn't exactly hauling in the 4 stars either and aren't even close to sniffing any 5 stars.

    I think it is fairly accurate on ranking the easiest kids to rank. Those are the ones that are so obviously and ridiculously athletic that even you could probably spot one of them as a top talent.

    Where they fail is with kids that are early commits so they don't attend many camps or else kids that simply don't attend camps for whatever reason. Most of these ratings come from what these kids do at these camps and if they don't go then they don't get much of a rating.

    It is certainly fun to rub the ratings of your recruiting class into your rival but the truth is neither utah or BYU is signing all that highly rated a class.

    You need to hope those lower rated guys panout since that is most of utahs class.

  • Bugoff Houston, TX
    Feb. 2, 2011 12:49 p.m.

    Yes some college walkons play in the NFL and some 5 star recruits bust.

    However, the odds are with the higher star players. If BYU had all 4 and 5 star recruits they would win more games.

    BYU's biggest problem is not getting good enough players at key positions.

  • Where's Stockton ??? Bowling Green, OH
    Feb. 2, 2011 12:30 p.m.

    Sorry friend... You have it sort of backwards. Notre Dame didn't bother to back up any interest in Mac. It was all pretty much one sided after Dan Devine learned that Mac was blind in one eye. That's why one of the big 3 tv networks did a documentary entitled "The Devine Mistake" after Mac set 71 NCAA passing records creating 17 new catagories never before tracked. Mac's place in the history of NCAA football will always be tied only to BYU...Notre Dame wouldn't even acknowledge him let alone even open the door.

    As usual you are way off the mark Hedgie!


  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 12:28 p.m.

    Re: Duckhunter

    The sudden realization that star count doesn't matter that much is curious given the Cougar Nations collective hyper-ventilation over a certain 5 star QB before he had even taken a D1 snap.

    I wonder if the Nation would be hyper-ventilating if there were a 5 star stud in this year's class, or if they would still think that stars don't matter?

  • nottyou Riverton, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 12:08 p.m.

    The Utes recruiting class of 2011 can be summed up in one phrase: even a blind squirrel will find a nut every now and then. The Utes are going to get worked their first few seasons in the PAC12.

  • Big_Ben Centerville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 11:54 a.m.


    overcoming drug addiction is possible.

  • TJ Eagle Mountain, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 11:37 a.m.

    The no-class crews whiney, cracking junior high voices are getting desperate now. Where are all your stars girls? I think all the 4 stars guys are waiting to see if other schools are still interested. In the mean time, your obsession is signing the types of athletes who will be worthy of the national prominence and respect they have earned.

  • Duckhunter American Fork, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 11:32 a.m.

    Not many more stars in utahs howard. Looks like you just suspend reality to try and make false points.

  • DaveKnowsWhatsUp Bloomington, IN
    Feb. 2, 2011 11:16 a.m.

    But Hedgie,

    You haven't answered the question yet, now that Utah and BYU have essentially parted ways, why do you continue to care so much about BYU? The only other team you have even mentioned today is Notre Dame, and that was in regards to McMahon. What is the fascination?

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 11:11 a.m.

    Looks like a dearth of stars in this years BYU recruiting class has helped the Cougar Nation realize that stars don't really matter after all.

  • IJ Hyrum, Ut
    Feb. 2, 2011 11:09 a.m.

    Sorry hedgehog, Bluto is correct. Mac wanted to play at ND but they did not come calling. That is why he ended up at BYU.
    Many interesting comments. High school is one thing, college quite another. The heart will determine who goes where, not the stars.

  • Striker Omaha, NE
    Feb. 2, 2011 11:00 a.m.

    hog, having a down year with new players doesn't put the team out of the national competition. Bronco has has many 10 plus win seasons and now has a new staff with amazing backgrounds.

    By the way, thanks for mentioning NATIONAL. Fits well before championship doesn't it? You're probably not familiar with that math equation though.

  • Cougar Claws Lindon, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 10:57 a.m.

    Here's the thing with highly ranked recruits and walk-ons

    Obviously no one knows how their careers will turn out before either of them play. But. . .for the most part highly recruited players have more success more often than walk ons do. That's just plain facts. You never know what you have in a recruit but highly recruited players at least give you more of an idea of the great potential they have and are more likely to be great players even though they don't always turn out. So there is always good reason to be excited about highly ranked players even though you don't know how they will turn out. With walk ons, you don't really know anything unless you have height/weight/forty time information and what accomplished in high school. Most of the time though, walk ons are walk ons for a reason. More often than not, they simply aren't as good or they would not be walk ons.

    The sign that you have a good walk on is hearing about practice performance. If you're starting a walk on when you could start a scholarship player, that's a positive.

  • Bluto Sandy, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 10:52 a.m.


    Yet Once Again, you have it all wrong..

    Jim McMahon often stated that if he had been offered by Notre Dame he would have gone there. It was his Dream school.

    His Father was Catholic his Mother is LDS.

    On Johnny Carson he stated he would go to BYU all over again, because it's where he met his wife, the daughter of a Stake President.

    His book ripping BYU, notwithstanding.

    How often does one man have to be wrong.

    Do you read and research anything?

    So uninformed it defies all reason.

    And there was no "star system" when Jimmy Mac played.

  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    Feb. 2, 2011 9:41 a.m.

    "Jim McMahon wasn't highly reguarded"

    ND was intrested in Jim McMahon....

  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    Feb. 2, 2011 9:37 a.m.

    A lot of tds using the o'l stars don't make the player spin.

    Yes, I understand many highly ranked recurites don't live up to the hype. But no one can disput the correlation between consistently strong recruiting classes and winning on a NATIONAl level.

    If BYU wants to achieve the "exposure" the soooo desperatly crave they cannot afford a non ranked recruiting class. just saying.

    Keep whistling in the wind but your looking at the future of BYU football ---- Not Ranked.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    Feb. 2, 2011 9:29 a.m.

    Some of my favorite players have been walk-ons, but not all my favorite players. You never know what will happen until they get out there and play the game.

  • Cali Coug Visalia, CA
    Feb. 2, 2011 9:27 a.m.

    As long as our one star kids continue to beat the u it is all good. I just wish the u had mens vollyball, track & field, soccer, lacrosse and cross country...because we would crush the u in these sports as well.

    It's good to be a Coug.

  • TRUTH Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 9:22 a.m.

    Notre Dame has as many stars as anyone....stars are all hype as is the ND Program....

    Even the DNEWS and SLLIB MVP's in this state are dubbed based on performance of two games, the semis and the finals every year...its all very surface, no real depth of character.....Jim McMahon wasn't highly reguarded at all except by his father coming out of Roy High....but there was only one choice back then and he made it! He had no stars, Today he would be 6 stars!

  • Old Jake Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 9:16 a.m.

    We all have a chance to create our future. Dedication, determination, persistence year after year give you a chance to win.

    There are a lot of factors that determine who turns into a starter. How they handle the time freedom of college is hard to predict.
    Also, some of these kids were driven so hard by their parents to play football that by the time they get to college they are burned out. It's happening right now all around us.

    Everyone thinks they are raising the next Jimmer only to find out that their constant pushing will backfire on them.

    Enjoy the journey. It's impossible for everyone to be the starting QB at BYU. Thank goodness there are more important goals in life to chase.

    Some people are awesome (5 star) High School players, others dominate college (Ty Detmer) and others make it to the pro bowl. It's ok to celebrate whatever success you have. There are some great people who never played in the Super Bowl.....or college......or even high school.

    Withholding your praise because they are not the "best" only means that you are a loser.

    Take the high road and cheer for everyone!

  • Big_Ben Centerville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 9:02 a.m.

    Its the same thing every year; if your team has a good recruiting class, you pump your chest about it. If your team doesn't have a great recruiting class, and your rival does, you say "let them prove it on the field"

    Its true of every team, no matter what.

  • DaveKnowsWhatsUp Bloomington, IN
    Feb. 2, 2011 7:57 a.m.


    Normally I ignore you, sometimes you make insightful comments, today you just showed your infatuation with BYU. I thought you were a U fan, yet you didn't even mention the U, and you completely missed the point of the article. Sure, the SEC teams loaded with talent are more likely to win a championship, but sometimes you never know (i.e. Weddle being a 2 star recruit and Ben Olson being much higher and their respective results).

    If your team is so superior, and BYU is so irrelevant, why do you even care? I honestly haven't read an article about Utah since their bowl game, yet you're still gushing over every BYU article you can find. I just don't get it.

  • Where's Stockton ??? Bowling Green, OH
    Feb. 2, 2011 7:33 a.m.

    Well Mike... having pointed these facts out in a post to Harmon's Jan 30th article on Return Missionaries... I'd like to emphasize the fact that there's more to the equation of how well these so called 5 star players will do. The Peter Principle seemingly more often than not catches up with these 4&5 star players early. It's sort of like trying to build a pyramid. Imperfections and breakdowns in a lot of those sound looking building blocks will occur. You can load up on all the 4's and 5's you want to... which will really look good on paper. But...after the onset of injuries, academic problems, personal problems, and the major factor that the majority of these so called blue chippers cannot perform to the same level as they did in High School you are going to wind up with a majority of your team being the ones and two's and probably several unheard ofs. That's where the role of the coaches comes into play more than anything else. Maturity is one thing. Ability another. But the value of a good coaching staff is...Priceless. Watch what Happens.


  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    Feb. 2, 2011 7:30 a.m.

    What does the last 20 National Champions have in common?

    Stars and lots of lots off STARZZZZ.

    Go ahead with your damage control spin, but I promise you an unranked BYU recruiting class will never EVER compete at the highest level.

    Sure, the tds might find the "diamond in the rough" long snapper or kicker in this class but so will Idaho St.

  • hedgehog Ann Arbor, MI
    Feb. 2, 2011 6:23 a.m.

    Once again the PR machine is in full our SPIN.

    Let me ask you this, Would the "corporation" allow such a article if they tds had a highly touted class coming in ? Y didn't we see this type of article last year?

    Trying to sell the "flock" that a 1&2 star recruit is just as good as a 4&5 star recruit.... deep down you know this arguement is not sustainable.

  • AltaHawkFan Sandy, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 2:19 a.m.

    Re: Big Hapa

    'That is why you quit on your dreams ..'

    Really ? Ouch .. thanks for the encouragement. ;-)

  • stonewall Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 2:10 a.m.

    I get tired of articles or opinions like this being aired so heavily out of this state. Obviously he has a point. Recruiting evaluation is no sure thing and they're going to get a lot of them wrong. There are going to be highly-touted players who flop and non-touted players who become stars. But what this article fails to take into account is the inverse. How many players with little or no recruiting hype never hit the field or make it into big-time football? The vast majority. Kevin Curtis and Eric Weddle are unique because their stories are so unheard of. They're 1 in 1,000 situations. Conversely, how many highly recruited or hyped players become stars? Quite a few. Guys like Tebow, Newton, Vince Young, Matthew Stafford, Jimmy Clausen, Matt Barkley, Reggie Bush, Terrell Pryor, Ingram and Richardson at Bama, Julio Jones, AJ Green... it goes on and on. Every one of those guys came out of high school with immense recruiting hype. And guess what? The hype was right! Cherry-picking examples to support his point doesn't make this article correct. Recruiting evaluation is inexact, but inexact doesn't mean inherently wrong

  • Big Hapa Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 12:14 a.m.

    If the article is boooooring why are you commenting? I think that is stupid.

    That is why you quit on your dreams, you just never know what the new day will bring.

  • Kyle loves BYU/Jazz Provo, UT
    Feb. 2, 2011 12:07 a.m.

    I can't agree more with this article. I just laugh at all the people fretting over the stars next to names and proclaiming themselves champions based on recruiting classes.

  • Pete88 Aurora, CO
    Feb. 1, 2011 11:55 p.m.


    this article echos my feelings EXACTLY! Some much is said and compared and boasted about when it comes to recruiting classes and what not. To me, how many stars a player or has or how much they dominated other high schools means only so much. It really comes down to the system in which they play in and their play on the field. like the article said, walk-ons and 1 or 2 star recruits have out-perfomed the higher ranked guys. With that, thats why i dont cry myself to sleep or rant and gnash my teeth when BYU doesnt have a top recruiting class. I mean, who cares? Some players will come in and contribute right away, others over time, and some wont at all. Thats just how it is.

  • UteFan24 Murray, UT
    Feb. 1, 2011 11:21 p.m.


  • Cougarbib2 Honolulu, HI
    Feb. 1, 2011 10:50 p.m.

    Cort Dennison, over looked by local teams, and especially by the Utes, is having a very nice career at the University of Washington. I say especially the Utes, because Dennison is not LDS and did not pursue BYU - he was raised a U fan. Guess who his parents will be rooting for next fall when UW comes to Rice-Eccles!