I’ve always felt that recruiting is an inexact science. Sure, star ratings are nice to see in front of players names. The thing is, it doesn’t always guarantee success. I’ve seen five star kids flame out, and two star kids become all conference studs. It’s not always about the star rating.
Sometimes, the light bulb comes on for a kid in college and that school reaps the rewards. It could also be the right mix of player and coach. This is the case with the following players, who are thriving in their current situations.
Before Finley came to NC State, he spent some time at Boise State. When he committed there in 2012 the Broncos were the only team to make him an offer. He had some interest from other high major schools, but none of them pulled the trigger. Finley is now the best QB in the ACC and is a good candidate for the 2019 NFL Draft.
Greg Dortch & Sam Hartman
The Wake Forest wide receiver is the perfect example of a kid who was overlooked because of his size (5’8″)and he’s proving a lot of people wrong. His other primary FBS interest came from Iowa State and Maryland. The majority of his offers came from HBCU teams. Dortch entered the season as First Team All-ACC.
His teammate, Sam Hartman, is having a strong freshman season. His only offers outside of Wake were from Charlotte and Elon.
Boston College defensive back Hamp Cheevers is among the league leaders in interceptions. He had two in limited action as a freshman but already has four this season. He was barely ranked inside the top 3000 of players in the 2016 class. His only other Power Five offer came from Kansas. The other offers were from schools like Marshall, UMass, Nevada, Utah State, and various FCS schools.
Jordan Ellis, Juan Thornhill, Bryce Hall
Virginia is the epitome of this. Because the program has been down, the level of high star commits hasn’t been available. Bronco Mendenhall and his staff have had to do a lot of development and it’s a must to have players buy into what they’re selling. It’s obviously working.
Running back Jordan Ellis, who is third in the league in rushing, had only two other FBS offers, from Miami (Ohio) and Western Kentucky.
DB’s Juan Thornhill and Bryce Hall, who lead the league in interceptions and passes defended respectively barely got noticed in their respective recruiting classes. Virginia was Thornhill’s only offer and Hall’s only other offers were from FCS schools.
As I said at the beginning, those higher star ratings are nice to see in front of a recruit’s name. It truly doesn’t guarantee success. It’s not always about the star rating.