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Our Class Ranking?

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Saw a lot of people today express displeasure with our current class, then a read a tweet that caught my eye.

 

@JoshHarveyScout "Average rating of the #Huskers recruiting class is No. 25 in the nation (3.17) on @scoutrecruiting. Ahead of #Baylor, #MSU, #OU, #SC #Mizzou"

 

What he is talking about is the average ranking for our committed players, not our total team ranking where it takes # of commitments into count (we are ranked #37) with scout. I looked up the teams ahead of us in team rankings that we have a higher, or dang near even "average player ranking" with. Here are the results.

 

Right Behind: OklaSt, Tied with Wisky, UNC.

 

 

 

Ahead of: Arizona, Baylor, North Carolina St, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, MichSt, Virgina Tech, Penn St, Arkansas, South Carolina, Louisville.

 

So of the 36 teams ahead of us...we have better ranked "talent" (I'm not a fan of star gazing, but some are) per recruit then 12 of those teams, and basically dead even with 3 more.

 

So what I am trying to say is, be careful looking at those rankings because different teams can take a different # to sway their ranking. But looking at the quality of recruit, instead of # of recruits, we aren't that far off a top 20-25 class. Combine that with our Top11-25 classes from few years and we are in the right direction.

 

Here are our past couple years "average".

2014- 3.17

2013- 3.31

2012- 3.00

2011- 3.35

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I don't get overly excited about recruiting rankings, one way or the other. I mean sure I like to see us land some of the highly ranked top recruits, especially in positions we need. Problem is lots of rankings change based on the team that signs them. It is anything but an exact science. There are no guarantees a high ranked player is going to perform any better than a walk on. I'm much more interested in player character and what our staff can get out of them once they've got that red N on their helmet. I might get pretty harsh with our coaches during the season when they offer excuses for why the players aren't getting the job done but I'm not about to go bouncing off the walls over a 20th or 40th ranked recruiting class. It's our coaches jobs to get the execution out of whoever shows up regardless if they're a two star or five star guy.

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I always think about the saying in jobs: 'It's not what you know, it's who you know.' In recruiting, if you're good at it and you know how you want your team to work, maybe it's similar. 'Don't rely on what every one else says, rely on what you want and need.' I'm not sure if Osborne operated under that mantra, but I'm not so sure he didn't always look at it that way either.

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I don't get overly excited about recruiting rankings, one way or the other. I mean sure I like to see us land some of the highly ranked top recruits, especially in positions we need. Problem is lots of rankings change based on the team that signs them. It is anything but an exact science. There are no guarantees a high ranked player is going to perform any better than a walk on. I'm much more interested in player character and what our staff can get out of them once they've got that red N on their helmet. I might get pretty harsh with our coaches during the season when they offer excuses for why the players aren't getting the job done but I'm not about to go bouncing off the walls over a 20th or 40th ranked recruiting class. It's our coaches jobs to get the execution out of whoever shows up regardless if they're a two star or five star guy.

What he said. +1

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According to the average star ranking on Rivals we are 39th.

 

 

So all this tells me is that Scout is lousy. I mean it doesn't actually say that, but that's already been believed, and it just reinforces it.

 

Doesn't make me feel any better or worse about our class.

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There are a number of guys who can end up being very good players for the team. Everything I hear about Pierson-el is he's super athletic, and can really play just about anywhere. Might be ready to take over Punt Return duties. You look at every single one of the guys we have, and there is something you can say you love about the guy.

 

I like what Bo has done with the program, I would like to see some improvement on the field, and I definitely don't want to see a repeat of the Iowa game. It seems that last year the focus was way too much on Bo. The tape, talking about his job, just everything. Next year needs to be focused on the players and the team as a whole.

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Back to the rankings don't matter line of thinking as a feel better pill. Unfortunately, the long term has proven that the composite rankings over several years do, in fact, matter. And its the class rank, not the individual average, that is important. Two star players end up All Americans and five star players never see the field. And numbers do matter, to carry the 85 total. The CFB Matrix guy picked games strait up better than 75%, in March, for the whole season with the 5 year average composite rankings as the primary factor in the formula.

 

Even the defense argument is being made against teams we don't want to be. And many of those even are coming off their best seasons in program history in the last couple of years.

 

Yes development does matter, no one is saying it doesnt, BUT it only goes so far. It cant make a guy taller, or faster, or more athletic.

 

And also by this different metric in the OP, it is still only average for what this staff has done. Do the same thing, get the same results. Any way it adds up to more of the stead 9-4 diet we are now accustomed to.

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Ranking of individual players are over-analyzed. They tell some of the story, but they're not the science. Class ranking are a manipulated bunch of bullsh#t. Theyre adjusted to fit agendas. Bottom line is you still have to get the guys to fit your system and get them developed to properly contribute. Not that this class is overly exciting right now, but Bo could put together the #1 class in the nation, and folks would still want him gone if he didnt win 4 straight national titles with it. That's just the atmosphere we live in right now.

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Ranking of individual players are over-analyzed. They tell some of the story, but they're not the science. Class ranking are a manipulated bunch of bullsh#t.

Recruiting1.jpg

 

Giving Bo a pass on his first year (which works to his advantage in this post), he has fielded 5 teams with an average rivals recruiting ranking of 21.76. Those same 5 teams have finished their seasons with an average AP ranking of 21.80. It's crazy how well 'manipulated bullsh#t' does at predicting results!

 

That alone should make you concerned about our low recruiting rank this year. But what you should probably be even more concerned about is the slopes of those two graphs. Taking red minus blue:

 

Recruiting3.jpg

 

So in the first two years looked at, our AP ranking was better than recruiting would indicate. In the last three, it's been worse. On average, it's spot on. But does that trend look good to you? Since you probably can't visualize it, here it is:

 

Recruiting4.jpg

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I don't get overly excited about recruiting rankings, one way or the other. I mean sure I like to see us land some of the highly ranked top recruits, especially in positions we need. Problem is lots of rankings change based on the team that signs them. It is anything but an exact science. There are no guarantees a high ranked player is going to perform any better than a walk on. I'm much more interested in player character and what our staff can get out of them once they've got that red N on their helmet. I might get pretty harsh with our coaches during the season when they offer excuses for why the players aren't getting the job done but I'm not about to go bouncing off the walls over a 20th or 40th ranked recruiting class. It's our coaches jobs to get the execution out of whoever shows up regardless if they're a two star or five star guy.

 

 

 

I'm with you on this one and I've expressed it in the past on this board...especially considering our own Ameer Abdullah was a 3 star coming out of high school and was the LEAST heralded of our RB recruiting class that year. Coaches seem to spot kids that want to put in work and get better every year. I'm ok with the coaches finding players with higher football aptitude and willingness to work versus the prima donna type of player with a few more stars in front of their names who think that stars = immediate playing time.

 

So, who cares about stars and GBR!

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Giving Bo a pass on his first year (which works to his advantage in this post), he has fielded 5 teams with an average rivals recruiting ranking of 21.76. Those same 5 teams have finished their seasons with an average AP ranking of 21.80. It's crazy how well 'manipulated bullsh#t' does at predicting results!

Good work on the graphs. +1

 

A couple comments:

- That's fine to "give Bo a pass" on his first year but being has he had all of about two months on the job before NSD, I really don't even think that's worth discussing.

- You looked at one team that happened to correlate the recruiting rankings to team rankings. That is an incredibly small sample size. If you can run 30+ teams and find the same thing, then it would be interesting. In particular, try running Tennessee, Kentucky, Texas, USC, Mississippi, Michigan and Miami over the same time frame and see how that works out.

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Saw a lot of people today express displeasure with our current class, then a read a tweet that caught my eye.

 

@JoshHarveyScout "Average rating of the #Huskers recruiting class is No. 25 in the nation (3.17) on @scoutrecruiting. Ahead of #Baylor, #MSU, #OU, #SC #Mizzou"

 

What he is talking about is the average ranking for our committed players, not our total team ranking where it takes # of commitments into count (we are ranked #37) with scout. I looked up the teams ahead of us in team rankings that we have a higher, or dang near even "average player ranking" with. Here are the results.

 

Right Behind: OklaSt, Tied with Wisky, UNC.

 

 

 

Ahead of: Arizona, Baylor, North Carolina St, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, MichSt, Virgina Tech, Penn St, Arkansas, South Carolina, Louisville.

 

So of the 36 teams ahead of us...we have better ranked "talent" (I'm not a fan of star gazing, but some are) per recruit then 12 of those teams, and basically dead even with 3 more.

 

So what I am trying to say is, be careful looking at those rankings because different teams can take a different # to sway their ranking. But looking at the quality of recruit, instead of # of recruits, we aren't that far off a top 20-25 class. Combine that with our Top11-25 classes from few years and we are in the right direction.

 

Here are our past couple years "average".

2014- 3.17

2013- 3.31

2012- 3.00

2011- 3.35

 

But average ranking of the player doesn't tell the whole story either. Recruiting is a numbers game. If a team takes more players, there is more likely to be a star within that class. Thus, a class with more players really is sometimes better.

 

For example, this year, according to rivals, Nebraska has 13 three star and 2 four star players. Baylor has 2 four star and 16 three star players. Yes, they also have 5 two star and 2 unrated players that bring down their average. So does the "average star ranking" tell the story here? Clearly not.

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Additionally, as I mentioned, recruiting is a numbers game, as well as an odds game. Can a 2 star player become an All-American? Absolutely. Can a 5 star player be a bust? Clearly. But here is why recruiting rankings matter:

 

http://sports.yahoo....-214251813.html

 

On All-Americans, for example: If you were to go back and review the projections for the 47 players named to one of the five All-America teams officially recognized by the NCAA — American Football Coaches' Association, the Associated Press, the Football Writers of America, the Sporting News and the Walter Camp Foundation — in 2011, only seven came into college as can't-miss, five-star blue chips, the cream of the crop.

 

 

By contrast, more than twice as many of those All-Americans — 18, to be exact, more than a third of the total —were rated three stars or lower by the recruiting services. According to the gurus, the top three or four recruiting powers in the country should field more talented rosters than that by themselves, right?

 

Right, if your standard involves zero margin for error, in which case you may as well stop reading. Fortunately, because we've been bestowed by the American education system with the magic of basic arithmetic, we do know better. If you look more closely at the relationship between initial expectations and eventual production, there's a very good reason for the heavy distribution of lower-ranked players among the nation's best, beginning with the distribution of stars at the beginning of the process, according to Rivals' extensive databaseof signees to I-A schools over the last five years:

 

130-All-Americans-Graph-1.jpg

 

I would hope that two and three-star players could acquit themselves well enough to produce a large number of big names, since they account for more than 85 percent of signees nationally. Again, using the rosters of the five NCAA-recognized All-America teams, the situation changes dramatically when you look at the All-America numbers in light of those ratios:

 

130-All-Americans-Graph-2.jpg

 

Maybe a raw ratio of 1 in 12 — or even 1 in 10, or whatever the "adjusted" number is after accounting for the early departures, injuries and academics that these numbers make no attempt to reflect — isn't all that impressive by itself. After all, that means far more elite recruits are falling short of their star-studded birthright than are reaching it. Across the board, failure and mediocrity are the norm, but if you think of a four or five-star player as a guy who is supposed to become an All-American — and a two or three-star guy as someone who is definitely not supposed to become an All-American — then yes, the rankings frequently miss.

 

 

On the other hand, if you consider the initial grade as a kind of investment — a projection of the how likely a player is of becoming an elite contributor compared to rest of the field — well, you'd put your money with the "experts" over the chances of finding the proverbial diamond in the rough every time:

 

 

EDIT: I don't know why the pictures won't post... they are showing up in my window when I am typing. But the take home of the images is that the raw numbers of recruits who become All-Americans breaks down like this

5* - 1:12

4* - 1:32

3* - 1:133

2* - 1:1218

 

So yea, the odds are that a three star player isn't going to be an All-American. And this is why recruiting rankings do actually matter.

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i agree with jj's post, but the reason i am more upset about recruiting than usual (i have never really cared about recruiting) is because that is what so many people used to defend bo. his classes are improving! it was what gave me hope that maybe we would see things turn around. now it is just another thing to be disappointed at and hard to argue that it is not just another area the coaches are under-performing at.

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Saw a lot of people today express displeasure with our current class, then a read a tweet that caught my eye.

 

@JoshHarveyScout "Average rating of the #Huskers recruiting class is No. 25 in the nation (3.17) on @scoutrecruiting. Ahead of #Baylor, #MSU, #OU, #SC #Mizzou"

 

What he is talking about is the average ranking for our committed players, not our total team ranking where it takes # of commitments into count (we are ranked #37) with scout. I looked up the teams ahead of us in team rankings that we have a higher, or dang near even "average player ranking" with. Here are the results.

 

Right Behind: OklaSt, Tied with Wisky, UNC.

 

 

 

Ahead of: Arizona, Baylor, North Carolina St, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, MichSt, Virgina Tech, Penn St, Arkansas, South Carolina, Louisville.

 

So of the 36 teams ahead of us...we have better ranked "talent" (I'm not a fan of star gazing, but some are) per recruit then 12 of those teams, and basically dead even with 3 more.

 

So what I am trying to say is, be careful looking at those rankings because different teams can take a different # to sway their ranking. But looking at the quality of recruit, instead of # of recruits, we aren't that far off a top 20-25 class. Combine that with our Top11-25 classes from few years and we are in the right direction.

 

Here are our past couple years "average".

2014- 3.17

2013- 3.31

2012- 3.00

2011- 3.35

 

But average ranking of the player doesn't tell the whole story either. Recruiting is a numbers game. If a team takes more players, there is more likely to be a star within that class. Thus, a class with more players really is sometimes better.

 

For example, this year, according to rivals, Nebraska has 13 three star and 2 four star players. Baylor has 2 four star and 16 three star players. Yes, they also have 5 two star and 2 unrated players that bring down their average. So does the "average star ranking" tell the story here? Clearly not.

I like the examples Junior! As far as the compared to Baylor thing, we can't just look at one years rankings to determine recruiting success. Because like you said maybe they are set up to take a larger class this year. Hell look at Tennessee, they are way up there is "team rankings" but its mainly because they have 30+ recruits.

So if we finish out with lets say 3 more 3*'s and 1 4* (feel like I am being generous with those numbers) then we'd have 16 3*'s and 3 4*s. Would we have the better class then Baylor then? (I have no clue how close Baylor is to "full" but with 25 commits they have to be close you'd think). Some real good info you posted.

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Big Ten Champions and their recruiting classes: Year - National Recruiting Ranking - Big Ten Recruiting Ranking

 

2013 Michigan State

2013 - 40 - 5

2012 - 41 - 5

2011 - 31 - 5

2010 - 30 - 4

2009 - 17 - 3

 

2012 Wisconsin Badgers

2012 - 57 - 8

2011 - 40 - 7

2010 - 88 - 10

2009 - 43 - 7

2008 - 41 - 5

 

2011 Wisconsin Badgers

2011 - 40 - 7

2010 - 88 - 10

2009 - 43 - 7

2008 - 41 - 5

2007 - 34 - 6

 

2010 Wisconsin Badgers

2010 - 88 - 10

2009 - 43 - 7

2008 - 41 - 5

2007 - 34 - 6

2006 - 40 - 7

 

 

and Nebraska this coming year

 

2014 - 42 - 7

2013 - 17 - 3

2012 - 25 - 3

2011 - 15 - 2

2010 - 22 - 3 (Big XII)

 

 

On a different note I wouldn't buy too much into the "it doesn't matter how many kids we recruit, it's that they all are rated highly" argument. I agree that part of that is true but recruiting is in many ways a game of numbers, pull in as many kids as you can because some aren't going to pan out. This isn't always true, especially of the teams that develop players especially well like Iowa, but take USC for example: 2013 - Average of 4.42 stars - 12 commits. 2012 - Average of 4.07 stars - 15 commits. On the surface those averages look amazing but those teams are going to be hurting in the future because all 27 of those kids aren't going to meet expectations. Ideally you want to be like Alabama or Ohio State and pull in around 25 guys and hover just below a 4 star average...that way you have depth if someone doesn't develop.

 

...and then of course there is the argument that stars can be ignored completely and coaches should just go after kids who fit the system and that has some merit. Recruit rankings can be inflated and manipulated - just watch what happens to a kid's stars when he's in a recruiting battle between Alabama and another school and then commits to one or the other...and there are obvious flaws in accessing talent and development and what not.

 

I guess my point of this entire post is to not get too alarmed about anything going on in recruiting, there are just so many things going on with it that make it difficult for a layman to judge. It isn't simply high recruiting ranking = championships...at least that's my approach.

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On a side note...our commits have been bumped up in the past few weeks which should improve our rankings:

 

 

ATH Jaevon Walton is now a 3 star and moved up 25 spots to the #51 MLB in the country

DE Joe Keels was bumped up to a 4 star

OG Tanner Farmer was bumped up to a 4 star and is now #82 in the Rivals top 100.

OG DJ Foster was bumped up to a 4 star and is #250 on the ESPN 300.

WR Jariah Tolbert was a 2 star but was bumped to a 3 star this past week

DE Peyton Newell is still a 4 star but was named CBS Sports Max Preps 1st team All-American for defensive line...he also has a 33 inch vertical leap at 270 lbs

K Drew Brown was bumped up to a 3 star

JUCO WR Robert Lockhart moved up to #33 overall in the JUCO 100 list

 

 

I'd say our class ranking will be going up with all this movement in the past 2 weeks or so.

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Just for clarification, your recruiting number for 2009, would be an average of the five recruiting years leading up to 2009 (2005-09), correct?

 

Yep.

 

- You looked at one team that happened to correlate the recruiting rankings to team rankings. That is an incredibly small sample size. If you can run 30+ teams and find the same thing, then it would be interesting. In particular, try running Tennessee, Kentucky, Texas, USC, Mississippi, Michigan and Miami over the same time frame and see how that works out.

It would be the same story, although the degree of accuracy would vary. It's not a coincidence that the last few recruiting top 5's have been made up of Alabama, Florida State, Ohio St., etc and the bottom 5's are made up of Massechussets, Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, etc. A pretty strong correlation exists, there's really no debating that.

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Our rankings will go up cause Bo gets in on guys that he and the staff discover. However, the best recruiting schools will close in on signing day with 4 and 5 star guys so it always seems to balance out our gains ... at least if you are looking at stars. We just don't reel in any big fisn usually on signing day.

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Giving Bo a pass on his first year (which works to his advantage in this post), he has fielded 5 teams with an average rivals recruiting ranking of 21.76. Those same 5 teams have finished their seasons with an average AP ranking of 21.80. It's crazy how well 'manipulated bullsh#t' does at predicting results!
It would be the same story, although the degree of accuracy would vary. It's not a coincidence that the last few recruiting top 5's have been made up of Alabama, Florida State, Ohio St., etc and the bottom 5's are made up of Massechussets, Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, etc. A pretty strong correlation exists, there's really no debating that.

It would not be the "same story" unless you consider varying by 30-40 spots within a "degree of accuracy". There is a correlation to some extent. But the last few top 5s have also included Texas, USC, Florida and Michigan. I haven't seen those teams finishing in the Top 5 recently. Struggling to get in the Top 25.

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Giving Bo a pass on his first year (which works to his advantage in this post), he has fielded 5 teams with an average rivals recruiting ranking of 21.76. Those same 5 teams have finished their seasons with an average AP ranking of 21.80. It's crazy how well 'manipulated bullsh#t' does at predicting results!

It would be the same story, although the degree of accuracy would vary. It's not a coincidence that the last few recruiting top 5's have been made up of Alabama, Florida State, Ohio St., etc and the bottom 5's are made up of Massechussets, Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, etc. A pretty strong correlation exists, there's really no debating that.

It would not be the "same story" unless you consider varying by 30-40 spots within a "degree of accuracy". There is a correlation to some extent. But the last few top 5s have also included Texas, USC, Florida and Michigan. I haven't seen those teams finishing in the Top 5 recently. Struggling to get in the Top 25.

Its not a coincidence that two of those four just changed coaches, and the other two are on a very hot seat for next season. Mich or Florida underperform again, and its new coaches for 2015.

 

Also keep in mind that only Oregon has played in a title game in the last decade without having a five year average of top 10 classes.

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Giving Bo a pass on his first year (which works to his advantage in this post), he has fielded 5 teams with an average rivals recruiting ranking of 21.76. Those same 5 teams have finished their seasons with an average AP ranking of 21.80. It's crazy how well 'manipulated bullsh#t' does at predicting results!
It would be the same story, although the degree of accuracy would vary. It's not a coincidence that the last few recruiting top 5's have been made up of Alabama, Florida State, Ohio St., etc and the bottom 5's are made up of Massechussets, Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, etc. A pretty strong correlation exists, there's really no debating that.

It would not be the "same story" unless you consider varying by 30-40 spots within a "degree of accuracy". There is a correlation to some extent. But the last few top 5s have also included Texas, USC, Florida and Michigan. I haven't seen those teams finishing in the Top 5 recently. Struggling to get in the Top 25.

I'm not sure you know how this works.

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looking at the data in this thread re: where numerically NU has finished the season in the rankings vs. the recruiting rankings one can only give a loose assessment --- nothing overly detailed can be concluded. The loose assessment is this... of late (past 6 years or so) generally NU recruits outside the nations top 20 and generally NU finishes the season ranked below #20 as well. NU is not a top 20 program any longer --- if say a 10 year window of assessment is in view. Of course, historically NU is a top 5 program (if the window of assessment extends to the last 50 years). But currently, NU is outside the top 20 looking in --- both in recruiting and in on-field performance.

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Nebraska was not historically a top five recruiting team either, so that throws a pretty good size wrench in that argument.

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looking at the data in this thread re: where numerically NU has finished the season in the rankings vs. the recruiting rankings one can only give a loose assessment --- nothing overly detailed can be concluded. The loose assessment is this... of late (past 6 years or so) generally NU recruits outside the nations top 20 and generally NU finishes the season ranked below #20 as well. NU is not a top 20 program any longer --- if say a 10 year window of assessment is in view. Of course, historically NU is a top 5 program (if the window of assessment extends to the last 50 years). But currently, NU is outside the top 20 looking in --- both in recruiting and in on-field performance.

You need to show that the correlation holds when NU is in the top 20. As in NU has top 20 recruiting classes when NU is ranked in the top 20 and vice versa. Otherwise you're not making a point but just pointing out stuff.

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looking at the data in this thread re: where numerically NU has finished the season in the rankings vs. the recruiting rankings one can only give a loose assessment --- nothing overly detailed can be concluded. The loose assessment is this... of late (past 6 years or so) generally NU recruits outside the nations top 20 and generally NU finishes the season ranked below #20 as well. NU is not a top 20 program any longer --- if say a 10 year window of assessment is in view. Of course, historically NU is a top 5 program (if the window of assessment extends to the last 50 years). But currently, NU is outside the top 20 looking in --- both in recruiting and in on-field performance.

You need to show that the correlation holds when NU is in the top 20. As in NU has top 20 recruiting classes when NU is ranked in the top 20 and vice versa. Otherwise you're not making a point but just pointing out stuff.

 

Actually that was precisely my point. The data is not sufficient to make concrete defensible correlations that can lead to a "point" that is anywhere near definitive. One is left only with broad impressions --- no correlation between recruiting class and final ranking was attempted. All one can do is say, generally, that NU's recruiting rankings in the broadest sense over the recent years is relatively speaking about where season ending team ranking resides.

 

Interestingly, when one looks at NU's glory years --- say 1970 - 1999 --- the season ending rankings tended to be higher than the recruiting ratings (though make no mistake, NU recruited well). Seemingly... and again only a broad generalism can be made --- NU performed on the field better than (and at times quite a bit better than) recruiting rankings predicted. That seemingly is not the case now.

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Nebraska was not historically a top five recruiting team either, so that throws a pretty good size wrench in that argument.

 

No argument was posited at all. I did not attempt a quantitative correlation between recruiting ranking and seasons ending ranking. I simply said that NU is not a top 20 program at present --- at least as measured by season's ending rankings --- when measured over the past 10 year window. I also said, generally recent recruiting ratings and season's ending rankings are fairly comparable. WRT the glory years of 1970-1999 NU was a top 5 overall program (based on season rankings) and recruited well too... but not a top 5 recruiting program... so I agree. NU played in that period above what recruiting rankings would have predicted. It should be noted however that NU did recruit well in that window (albeit not top 5)

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So then you agree that it's possible to out perform recruiting rankings and that low rankings in no way dooms us to low results on the field, where it actually matters.

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So then you agree that it's possible to out perform recruiting rankings and that low rankings in no way dooms us to low results on the field, where it actually matters.

 

I do in fact agree with your premise. It is certainly possible to out perform recruiting ratings. Many programs do. Also, it is possible to under perform relative to recruiting ranking --- I would hold recent North Carolina, Texas, USC, Michigan and Florida as program examples.

 

Like you Dylan, I concur that on field performance is the metric of value. Recruiting rankings are fun though because it gives us something to talk about after the season ends. And... such rankings are so speculative that ample grounds for all sorts of interesting interchange exists.

 

In this class, the film on a few of the guys stands out to me and I am excited about --- of course, no telling how they will do at the next level, but McClain, Wills, Newell, and a guy not too many have spoken about Pierson-Els all look like hopefuls (others too... but these guys on film looked particularly good).

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Pierson-Els is the receiver I expect the most from, unless Harrison actually makes it to campus.

 

Oh yes. Harrison does look great... I just did not comment on him because many assert he will not actually arrive here. But if he does... and who knows, he might, then I agree he is the most promising WR on film. The Peirson-El film has not generated many posts worth of comment... but he is shifty and quick... could be a great returned (if he has hands).

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Agreed on Pierson-El. Even I sometimes forget he's a part of this class. I feel he's strongly underappreciated and even almost taken for granted.

 

Amidst the news Stewart may not make it, I think a lot of us forgot we already have Pierson-El committed and he's likely even more versatile and able to create mismatches. Very glad to have such a fluid athlete for the skill positions.

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A pretty strong correlation exists, there's really no debating that.

 

Just to add further evidence to KJ's point:

 

For the 2012-2013 season, I took a look at the correlation between wins that season and recruiting rankings (total points according to Rivals) for 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012 [the five classes of players who were a part of the 2012-2013 season].

 

For 2008: r = .39

For 2009: r = .36

For 2010: r = .35

For 2011: r = .42

For 2012: r = .44

 

All of those are strong correlations: teams who recruit well also win more games and are ranked higher as a result. Furthermore, teams who recruited well in the past tended to recruit well in the future too; all the intercorrelations between the recruiting ranks were extraordinarily high. Not eye opening information.

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Correlation vs. causation? I would say the greater portion is indeed causative, but you can't deny that teams that have won historically end up with their recruits ranked higher because of their prestige. In other words, their winning percentage artificially inflates their recruit rankings to some extent. We've seen that an offer from Nebraska has this effect on kids with relatively low offers. Teams with even more prestige presumably tend to inflate rankings even more.

 

I also think the rankings skew towards populated areas and the south, artificially inflating rankings, but that's a bit off topic.

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Correlation vs. causation? I would say the greater portion is indeed causative, but you can't deny that teams that have won historically end up with their recruits ranked higher because of their prestige. In other words, their winning percentage artificially inflates their recruit rankings to some extent. We've seen that an offer from Nebraska has this effect on kids with relatively low offers. Teams with even more prestige presumably tend to inflate rankings even more.

 

I also think the rankings skew towards populated areas and the south, artificially inflating rankings, but that's a bit off topic.

 

Just correlation. As for the prestige factor [recruits go to teams who win more], I also looked at the correlation between wins in the 2012-2013 season and class ranking in 2012 and controlled that for wins in the 2011-2012 season; it looks at the correlation between the two if everyone had won the same amount of games.

 

The correlation is still pretty strong [r = .28], but it is significantly lower than the .44 value given above.

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A pretty strong correlation exists, there's really no debating that.

 

Just to add further evidence to KJ's point:

 

For the 2012-2013 season, I took a look at the correlation between wins that season and recruiting rankings (total points according to Rivals) for 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012 [the five classes of players who were a part of the 2012-2013 season].

 

For 2008: r = .39

For 2009: r = .36

For 2010: r = .35

For 2011: r = .42

For 2012: r = .44

 

All of those are strong correlations: teams who recruit well also win more games and are ranked higher as a result. Furthermore, teams who recruited well in the past tended to recruit well in the future too; all the intercorrelations between the recruiting ranks were extraordinarily high. Not eye opening information.

Isn't r>0.6 usually considered strong correlation?

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A pretty strong correlation exists, there's really no debating that.

 

Just to add further evidence to KJ's point:

 

For the 2012-2013 season, I took a look at the correlation between wins that season and recruiting rankings (total points according to Rivals) for 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012 [the five classes of players who were a part of the 2012-2013 season].

 

For 2008: r = .39

For 2009: r = .36

For 2010: r = .35

For 2011: r = .42

For 2012: r = .44

 

All of those are strong correlations: teams who recruit well also win more games and are ranked higher as a result. Furthermore, teams who recruited well in the past tended to recruit well in the future too; all the intercorrelations between the recruiting ranks were extraordinarily high. Not eye opening information.

Isn't r>0.6 usually considered strong correlation?

 

Depends on your discipline. To me, anything > .30 is strong.

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Here's what happens when you control each the relationship between a season's recruiting rank with the wins of that season (i.e. 2009 recruiting ranking and wins in 2009-2010) for the wins in the previous season.

 

2009 RRank & 2009 wins controlling for 2008 wins: r = .214

2010 RRank & 2010 wins controlling for 2009 wins: r = .24

2011 RRank & 2011 wins controlling for 2010 wins: r = .265

2012 RRank & 2012 wins controlling for 2011 wins: r = .287

 

All of those correlations are still significant, despite removing last season's win from the equation. Last season's success is still important; all the values decreased significantly when last year's win total was controlled. So I think it's safe to say, and again this isn't eye opening information, that teams who have a good season, then follow it up with a good recruiting class, will have a good season the next season as well.

 

Recency seems to play more of a factor than primacy in shaping a recruit's perception of a school. How a school does when a player first starts to care about a school doesn't matter as much as how a school performs when that player has to make his decision. The correlations between recruiting rank and wins the same season increase (with the exception between 2009 and 2010 which stayed the same) as the season controlled for gets further away from the actual year.

 

2012 RRank and 2012 wins controlling for 2011 wins: r = .287

2012 RRank and 2012 wins controlling for 2010 wins: r = .340

2012 RRank and 2012 wins controlling for 2009 wins: r = .339

2012 RRank and 2012 wins controlling for 2008 wins: r = .381

 

Yet, even when the relationship is controlled for wins in the past 4 seasons, the correlation is still significant [r = .23]

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But if you're looking at success in the same year as recruiting, isn't that saying the opposite (or, perhaps not opposite, but at least distinctly different)? The original premise was that recruiting leads to good teams. Those results seem to say that good teams leads to good recruiting. To show a better correlation as to recruiting leading to on-field success, wouldn't you have to compare recruiting to wins 2-4 years down the road?

 

And all that is still presupposing that the recruiting rankings are pristine and unbiased. Five stars are the best, two stars at the bottom but the vast majority of BCS signees (I'd speculate high-90%) are three and four star recruits which is very hard to tell the difference between a lot of them. There are myriad reasons why a mid-four-star in Texas could be a mid-three-star in Wisconsin.

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But if you're looking at success in the same year as recruiting, isn't that saying the opposite (or, perhaps not opposite, but at least distinctly different)? The original premise was that recruiting leads to good teams. Those results seem to say that good teams leads to good recruiting. To show a better correlation as to recruiting leading to on-field success, wouldn't you have to compare recruiting to wins 2-4 years down the road?

 

And all that is still presupposing that the recruiting rankings are pristine and unbiased. Five stars are the best, two stars at the bottom but the vast majority of BCS signees (I'd speculate high-90%) are three and four star recruits which is very hard to tell the difference between a lot of them. There are myriad reasons why a mid-four-star in Texas could be a mid-three-star in Wisconsin.

 

The pattern of causation will never be clear. Did the chicken or the egg come first kind of thing. But, here are the correlations for recruiting ranks of past seasons and wins in 2012:

 

2008: r = .388

2009: r = .365

2010: r = .349

2011: r = .423

2012: r = .440

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So, if I'm reading that right, there is more correlation to recruiting in the same year than in previous years. Thus, would tend to show that success affects recruiting (more correlation in the same year, whose recruits have nothing to do with that year's on-field success) more than recruiting affects success (less correlation in previous years who's recruits are directly responsible for on-field success). Would that be correct (condeding your first two sentenses)?

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Isn't r>0.6 usually considered strong correlation?

 

Depends on your discipline. To me, anything > .30 is strong.

Qualifier words like "strong" are always subjective. But most references I've seen would consider 0.3 weak to moderate positive correlation. I've never seen an 0<r<0.5 considered "strong".

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Nebraska was not historically a top five recruiting team either, so that throws a pretty good size wrench in that argument.

How recruiting was done and measured decades ago is no comparison for the modern era. There were no rankings really to speak of. Certainly not by groups with lots of employees looking at film of recruits. That was also the era where not every program had the strength, conditioning and nutrition programs NU had. Now its all commonplace. And also keep in mind for a long, long time there were no scholarship limits. And NU had a commitment to football that most other places did not.

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