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Rutgers Recruiting: How many stars does it take to.....make a difference?

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"It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves." -- William Shakespeare

Welcome to the R-F.A.M.I.L.Y.  Keep choppin'
Welcome to the R-F.A.M.I.L.Y. Keep choppin'
James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

Thank you, Marques Ford.  I was about three-quarters of the way through writing this when you decided to de-commit from Tennessee (good call) and commit to Rutgers (great call).  But if I had to rip up the old story and re-write a lot of it, your commitment was a really good reason to do it.  So, as I said at the start, thank you, Marques.

Okay, now that that's over with, let's start off with a pop quiz.  It will only count for extra credit, so no cheating.  And we'll even make it multiple choice!  Answers are at the bottom of the story.

1. Since 2006, how many 5-star recruits has Rutgers signed?

A)  0                B)  1                C)  2                D)  3

2. Since 2006, how many 5-star recruits has Maryland signed?

A)  0                B)  1                C)  2                D)  3

3. Since 2006, how many 5-star recruits has Oregon signed?

A)  0                B)  2                C)  5                D)  7

4. Since 2006, what percentage of Rutgers recruits have been ranked with stars?

A)  75%          B)  80%          C)  85%          D)  90%

5. Since 2006, what percentage of Maryland recruits have been ranked with stars?

A)  75%          B)  80%          C)  85%          D)  90%

6. Since 2006, what percentage of Oregon recruits have been ranked with stars?

A)  77%          B)  81%          C)  85%          D)  90%

7. Since 2006, what is the highest national ranking of a recruiting class by Rutgers?

A)  24             B)  28             C)  32             D)  36

8. Since 2006, what is the highest national ranking of a recruiting class by Maryland?

A)  15             B)  18             C)  22             D)  27

9. Since 2006, what is the highest national ranking of a recruiting class by Oregon?

A)  5                B)  7                C)  11             D)  17

Figures never lie and liars never figure

So what does the quiz do?  What does it prove?  Of course.....nothing.  Unless you got them all right, in which case you really need to get out more.

If you look at the total number of recruits and the number of recruits who had stars, the percentage among the three programs isn't that different. What is, of course, is the level of stars, which explains at least in part why Oregon was playing on January 12 and the Knights and Terps were at home.

I decided to focus on three programs: Rutgers, Maryland (as a "peer" and a regional rival), and Oregon (because I spent four days writing about them and their numbers are interesting).  For starters, I used 247 Sports Composite.  I could have used another, or multiple sources, but I wanted to keep it relatively simple and straight forward.  The rankings are very different from, for example, Rivals to 247.  But the stars are about the same.

2015

Rivals 5*

Rivals 4*

Rivals 3*

Rivals Ranking

247 5*

247 4*

247 3*

247 Ranking

Oregon

0

5

13

26

1

5

13

16

Maryland

1

3

9

53

0

2

16

39

Rutgers

0

0

15

57

0

1

19

50+

I used the data from 2006 to today, again to keep it simple and to insure I had consistent data.  Over that time, Oregon outpaced both Rutgers and Maryland in terms of recruiting class rankings.  But Maryland and RU were relatively close, occasionally flipping up and down.

And the overall number of "star" recruits was not that wide a range.  The difference: Oregon got 4 and 5 star recruits, but not as many 5 stars as I thought they would.  And Rutgers needs to up the 4 stars count to change talent level and perception.

National rankings numbers didn't change much with the arrival of Mr. Ford.  But for the Big Ten we moved up to No. 9 on 247 Sports ranking of the conference. That's up four placesFOUR!

As I said, thank you, Marques.

Answers to the quiz

1. Since 2006, how many 5-star recruits has Rutgers signed?  C)  2

2. Since 2006, how many 5-star recruits has Maryland signed?  C)  2

2. Since 2006, how many 5-star recruits has Oregon signed? C)  5

3. Since 2006, what percentage of Rutgers recruits have been ranked with stars? B)  80%  actually 80.3%

4. Since 2006, what percentage of Maryland recruits have been ranked with stars? C)  85%  actually 84.6%

4. Since 2006, what percentage of Oregon recruits have been ranked with stars?   B)  81%  actually 81.2%

5. Since 2006, what is the highest ranked recruiting class by Rutgers?  A)  24   in 2012

6. Since 2006, what is the highest ranked recruiting class by Maryland?  D)  27  in 2006

7. Since 2006, what is the highest ranked recruiting class by Oregon?  C)  11 in 2011, the first year they played for the National Championship