College Football Recruiting: The Worst Class from Every FBS Team in Last 5 Years

Carl Stine@@CFBAllDayCorrespondent IJanuary 20, 2012

College Football Recruiting: The Worst Class from Every FBS Team in Last 5 Years

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    College football recruiting can be tough.

    Yet it seems as if head coaches such as Les Miles, Nick Saban, Bob Stoops, Chip Kelly and even Mark Dantonio don't often have a bad class arrive on campus.

    Some are just better than others.

    This list endeavors to run down each FBS team's worst recruiting class in the past five seasons.

    The time period considered is from 2007 to 2011, and the two main points of judging are the grades of recruits as well as performance on the field.

FAU Owls

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    Worst Class: 2008

    This was a rough season.

    The Owls and legendary head coach Howard Schnellenberger could only snag six recruits this season.

    The kicker?

    The highest-rated recruit received a grade of 40.


Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This class was bad.

    There were 20 commits in this class, so it was fairly large.

    However, the highest-rated recruit was cornerback Chris Sharpe at 73.

Troy Trojans

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    Worst Class: 2010

    B.J. Chitty received the highest grade of this class, checking in at 78.

    After that, they dropped off dramatically.

    The Trojans have had some moderate success within the Sun Belt Conference and usually haul in one of the better classes in the conference.

ULM Warhawks

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    Worst Class: 2007

    It's simple, really.

    This class featured 26 recruits.

    The highest-rated recruit received a grade of 73.

    After that, it's a bunch of 40s.

    Not pretty.

North Texas Mean Green

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Tight end Austin Fitzpatrick joined this class as the highest-rated recruit.

    His grade was a 73.

    Wide receiver Daniel Mayberry joined him.

    His grade was 72.

    The closest recruit after that had a 40.

FIU Golden Panthers

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    Worst Class: 2007

    The Golden Panthers have recruited some solid players in recent years, namely receiver T.Y. Hilton.

    This class, however, sucked.

    There were only 14 commits in the entire class, and none of them graded higher than 76.

ULL Ragin' Cajuns

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Every season since this class, the grade of the recruits brought in by the Ragin' Cajuns has been better.

    There is no way to say that any of them have been worse than this one since the highest-rated recruit was guard Jaron Odom, and he checked in at 72.

Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

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    Worst Class: 2009

    The previous class featured quarterback Kawaun Jakes, who has been instrumental in getting the Hilltoppers to their first winning season since joining the FBS.

    This class, while it does include some guys who wound up contributing significant minutes, did not contribute any standout athletes to WKU's program.

Arkansas State Red Wolves

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    Worst Class: 2007

    This was before Hugh Freeze's time with the program, and he definitely upgraded the recruiting.

    The highest-rated recruit was tackle Paul Henry, and the rest of the 24 recruits brought in that season were graded at 45 or lower.

Idaho Vandals

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    Worst Class: 2007

    The Vandals have been having a tough time recruiting what little in-state talent there is thanks to Boise State.

    That trend is likely to continue now that the Broncos are going to be part of a BCS conference.

    This class in particular demonstrated a certain recruiting ineptitude of epic proportions.

    There were 22 commits to the class, but only three of them graded 70 or higher, and the rest transferred from junior college or were graded at 40.

New Mexico State Aggies

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    Worst Class: 2008

    If it weren't for teams such as NMSU, we wouldn't have anybody to make fun of.

    The Aggies just have a tough time winning.

    That shouldn't really come as a surprise when a class whose highest-rated prospect only received a grade of 68 is the type of recruiting that is taking place.

Hawai'i Warriors

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    Worst Class: 2008

    June Jones left his mark on Hawai'i football before departing for SMU.

    This class was not a good part of that mark.

    It featured only 18 recruits, none rated higher than 77.

Fresno State Bulldogs

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Believe what you will—I choose to put my faith in the 'stache.

    You gotta believe that part of Pat Hill's success while at Fresno State was due to his tremendous facial hair.

    Has there ever been another coach at the program with near that measure of success?

    Thought not.

    Think it over.

San Jose State Spartans

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    Worst Class: B.M.M. (Before Mike MacIntyre)

    MacIntyre hasn't been there long, but Spartans recruiting is starting the upward climb under his purview.

    While the program will never carry the cachet of USC, UCLA, Cal or Stanford, there is no reason it should not be able to sneak a top in-state recruit once in a while.

Nevada Wolf Pack

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Chris Ault is an innovator, a genius and a darn good football coach.

    He rarely gets stuck with a bad recruiting class.

    For that reason we are going to go with the only tangible measure we have to use: grades.

    The highest grade in this class went to linebacker Albert Rosette—he pulled down a 71.

    Not exactly the type of class one might wish to have.

Utah State Aggies

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    Worst Class: 2008

    The top recruit in this class, quarterback Exavier Johnson, has not even had a shot to play.

    When one scans the list of players that were signed in 2008, it becomes obvious that this was not one of the best classes in program history.

La. Tech Bulldogs

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    Worst Class: 2009

    We can't criticize this class too much.

    You see, many of these recruits had a part in the Bulldogs' WAC title this season.

    That's right—a team from Louisiana won the Western Athletic Conference.

    Go figure.

Akron Zips

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    Worst Class: 2011

    Look, Zips fans, life is not getting better.

    The Zips' recent recruiting classes have been worse than they were in 2007 and 2008.

    That is definitely not conducive to fielding a quality football team.

Central Michigan

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    Worst Class: 2008

    A 74 grade was the highest accorded to any of the Chippewas' recruits in this class.

    That less than great grade was achieved by quarterback Ryan Radcliff.

    At least there were 21 other recruits worse than him to make him feel good about himself.

Buffalo Bulls

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Turner Gill had some pretty solid classes during his time at Buffalo before leaving for Kansas.

    This was not one of them.

    Quarterback Zack Ingle was the highest-rated recruit, but his grade was a measly 70 going into National Signing Day.

    The Bulls are back on hard times now that Gill is gone, and those recruiting classes aren't getting any better.

Eastern Michigan Eagles

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    Worst Class: 2008

    The highest recruit in this class was graded 74, and it went quickly downhill from there.

    There were only two guys in the class graded above 70.

Miami (OH) RedHawks

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This could be due to their youth, but none of the guys in this class has had much impact as of yet.

    Guys like Austin Boucher and Zac Dysert were unheralded but wound up playing big for the RedHawks.

    Those guys were part of other classes, though. Nobody has yet emerged from this class.

Ball State Cardinals

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    Worst Class: 2007

    The 2008 class was good to the Cardinals, boasting a couple recruits that graded in the high 70s and one that received an 80.

    The year prior, however, was rough.

    The class was 20 guys, and every one of them, including top recruit Brendan Choy, was ranked 74 or lower.

Bowling Green Falcons

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    Worst Class: 2007

    We have seen some classes in this slideshow where the highest-graded recruit was in the mid to low 70s.

    This one is even worse.

    The Falcons are not usually known for their prowess on the field, and it could be due to classes such as this one.

    The highest-rated recruit, running back Mark Wooldridge, could muster only a 68.

Western Michigan Broncos

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Alex Carder and Jordan White you may know about or at least be familiar with.

    Harrison Porter?

    Deshon Lawrence?

    Didn't think so.

Kent State Golden Flashes

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Wait, Kent State still has a football program?

    The Golden Flashes have only been on our radar in recent seasons when they are receiving a whupping at the hands of the "big boys."

    This recruiting class has not helped matters in any way.

Toledo Rockets

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    Worst Class: 2008

    This is more a case of who isn't there then who is.

    Some of the guys in this class have had semi-productive stints at Toledo.

    However, there is no star.

    No Adonis Thomas or Eric Page to make it equal with some of the other recent classes pulled in by the Rockets.

Temple Owls

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    Worst Class: Any class not involving Bernard Pierce

    Not really.

    The Owls have actually put together some decent classes, especially on the defensive side of the ball.

    However, Pierce is a cut above the rest, so the other four classes in this time period do not even come close to matching his.

NIU Huskies

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    Worst Class: 2008

    This class was pretty rough.

    It totaled only 13 recruits, none of them rated higher than 74.

    No Chandler Harnish in this crew.

    However, it can be expected that Dave Doeren will have this thing turned around soon and solid recruits will be rolling in.

Ohio Bobcats

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This is likely more a result of the class still being young than anything else.

    This team was solid this season, making its way to the MAC title game before succumbing to the aforementioned Chandler Harnish and company.

    However, there were only 17 recruits in this class; none of them really made an impact in 2011, and none of them were graded higher than 74.

    Give them a year and we may have to revise this, but for now that's how it looks.

Tulane Green Wave

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Say what you will about Tulane—it struggles to recruit.

    This class was especially appalling.

    There were only five guys in the class that were graded above a 40.

    We know that grades are sometimes poor measures of a man's capability to play with the pigskin, but 40 is just ridiculous.

Memphis Tigers

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    Worst Class: Any not involving basketball players

    Since the days of Derrick Rose/John Calipari, the Tigers have not been especially proficient at playing basketball, but the football team is just downright embarrassing.

    It's tough to recruit, as football is not huge at the program yet, and the classes have been just pitiful recently.

UTEP Miners

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This class had the lowest-graded top recruit of any class the Miners have brought in for the past five years.

    Nathan Jeffery, a running back out of Caddo Mills, Texas, earns the dubious distinction, checking in at just 74.

    I believe that would be a "C" on the letter grade scale.

UCF Knights

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Wide receiver Kamar Aiken was the Knights' only ESPN150 recruit of the past half-decade.

    Aiken was a great pro prospect and is currently in the NFL.

    Other than him, this class was a dud.

Rice Owls

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    Worst Class: 2007

    2007 must have been a bad year for recruiting across the board.

    Rice was one of the worst offenders.

    The Owls managed to recruit 24 guys, but Kramer Lucio, the top recruit, was only graded a 71.

UAB Blazers

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    Worst Class: 2008

    2007 was bad for some, but the Blazers hit a five-year low in 2008.

    They managed to recruit only two guys—linebacker Katrell Watters and ATH Terrell Springs—that were graded above 70.

    No wonder they play in C-USA.

SMU Mustangs

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    Worst Class: 2011

    This is purely by the measurement of the recruiting grades, as this is the best measure for the Mustangs at this point.

    The most recent class included the lowest grade for the Mustangs' best recruit of the past five seasons.

    No offense to Devon Moreland at a grade of 78, but the 'Stangs have had a higher grade for at least one recruit in each of the four other seasons considered.

East Carolina Pirates

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Simply because of the grades.

    While definitely not the worst in C-USA, they were not even close to the grades of an average BCS conference team.

    Also, this season, even the highest-graded recruits the Pirates hauled in had lower rankings than their other classes' best recruits.

    That means there was no Dominique Davis in this class.

Tulsa Golden Hurricane

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    Worst Class: 2007

    The Golden Hurricane have had some solid recruiting classes, including guys like Damaris Johnson and G.J. Kinne.

    This class, however, was pretty sad, with the highest-rated recruit only at a 72.

    There were only two guys in this class rated higher than 70.

Marshall Thundering Herd

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    Worst Class: 2011

    Travon Van highlighted this class, and it has plenty of potential.

    That said, the recruits from the previous three seasons helped this team to a solid season in 2011.

    Van contributed in a big way in 2011, but he was pretty much the only one from this class.

Houston Cougars

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Yep, this class was five years ago.

    And still Case Keenum was recruited the year before this class.

    When it comes to Houston lore, there is not a class that could match his, leaving this one on the bottom.

Southern Miss Golden Eagles

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    Wrong Class: 2011

    2007 and 2008 were good classes for the Eagles, each of them featuring an ESPN150 recruit.

    Since then it has all gone downhill by degrees.

    This year's highest-rated recruit, Chauncey Smith, sat at only 78.

New Mexico Lobos

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Could it be any worse?

    The Lobos had 23 guys in this class.

    The highest grade?


    That's pathetic.

UNLV Rebels

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Before Bobby Hauck arrived to take over as head coach, things were rough for the Rebels.

    The 2007 class wound up with 20 recruits.

    Not bad.

    However, safety Shane Horton was the highest-graded recruit at 68.


    No other recruit was higher than 40.

    Really bad.

Colorado State Rams

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Nordly Capi was not a part of this class.

    Truthfully, there were no stars that really emerged out of this group.

    The highest-graded recruit was safety Ezra Thompson, who topped out at 76.

    Nobody has really jumped out.

Air Force Falcons

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    Worst Class: 2009

    It's tough to field teams that can compete with anybody in the country from one of the military schools.

    Air Force has done a decent job of doing so over the past few seasons, and this in no way rips on the young men that sacrifice their time and lives for their country.

    That said, the 2009 class was not that great from a grading or performance standpoint.

San Diego State Aztecs

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Running back Ronnie Hillman was recruited in 2009—quarterback Ryan Lindley in 2007.

    This class did not include anybody who has really been a huge producer for the team.

Wyoming Cowboys

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    Worst Class: 2008

    The 2007 class had only three recruits graded over 70.

    The 2008 class decided to one-up them.

    It had only two.

    Thankfully, recruiting has gotten better at this program.

Boise State Broncos

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Safety Winston Venable was a solid defender while at BSU, and Kirby Moore has the name, but given the great classes that Chris Petersen has pulled in recently, this one was not quite up to standards.

TCU Horned Frogs

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This class did not have a chance to contribute a whole bunch this season, mainly due to the experience and depth Gary Patterson can throw on the field.

    That said, the classes just prior to this one boasted names such as Tank Carder, Casey Pachall and Josh Boyce.

    It's tough to hold a candle to those recruits.

Army Black Knights

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Once again, this is not to bash the young men who serve our country.

    That said, this class was not that great.

    Only five recruits were graded above 40.

    It's tough at the service academies, as the talent pool is smaller, but this class was just bad.

Navy Midshipmen

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Take everything mentioned in the slides about Air Force and Army and insert it here.

    It's tough to pull the same level of talent to Navy as can be found at some of the more prolific programs.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish

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    Worst Class: 2008

    The Irish have great recruiting classes every year.

    This one was no exception.

    However, of the 10 ESPN150 recruits in the class, only one went on to even a good college career, and quarterback Dayne Crist has transferred.

    That one was Michael Floyd, so maybe it's foolish to tag this class as the worst, but with that failure rate, it's got to be up there on the list.

BYU Cougars

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    Worst Class: 2010

    Earlier in the week, I noted this as the best class because it included Jake Heaps, who I had seen play in spurts and liked.

    BYU fans quickly set me straight. Heaps was not limited by injury, but by attitude, and his loss, while not a crushing blow, certainly detracted from the success of this group.

Syracuse Orange

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    Worst Class: 2009

    The Big East has long been considered, whether fair or not, the worst of the six BCS conferences.

    It's recruiting classes such as this by a member of the conference that make the difference between the Big East and the Big 12 or SEC.

    Syracuse's highest-rated recruit this season was offensive tackle Zack Chibane at 77.

USF Bulls

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    Worst Class: 2011

    It's nothing against these young men, who have not really had much playing time or many chances to prove themselves.

    That said, this class does not have any ESPN150 recruits, which USF had the season before, and the highest-rated recruit checked in at 77.

    Skip Holtz has had some solid classes. This was not one of them.

UConn Huskies

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    Worst Class: 2010

    UConn hasn't been part of the FBS for very long.

    It has had some good recruiting classes, especially leading up to the Big East title run in 2010.

    The recruiting class that season was the worst the Huskies have had in the past five years.

    Paul Pasqualoni has the coaching experience, but I don't know that he can get strong recruits to come to Connecticut.

Pitt Panthers

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    Worst Class: 2011

    Jonathan Baldwin. LeSean McCoy.

    These are the types of players Pitt fans and staff are used to bringing into the program.

    Every season, the Panthers have hauled in recruits graded at least 80—except for this season.

    That was partially due to the new system and coach Todd Graham, who hung around longer than a Kim Kardashian marriage, but not by much.

Rutgers Scarlet Knights

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    Worst Class: 2010

    It's difficult to figure out why Rutgers has not been that great recently.

    It seems that each class has one or two top-150 guys or at the very least a recruit or two that  is ranked 80 or higher.

    Greg Schiano has it rolling in the recruiting aspect of the program—now to get it rolling on the field.

    And I don't mean a second-place finish in the Big East.

Louisville Cardinals

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    Worst Class: 2009

    The Cardinals' 2011 class was good to them, as was 2010.

    Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater became the Cards' offensive catalyst.

    The 2009 class had some solid performers on this season's squad that finished tied atop the Big East.

    However, its highest-rated recruit was graded 77.

West Virginia Mountaineers

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    Worst Class: 2008

    No offense to this class.

    It just got stuck between some great ones.

    The season before, Noel Devine joined the program.

    In 2009, Geno Smith and Tavon Austin both rolled in.

    It seems as if every season has brought another superstar to the Mountaineers—with the exception of this season.

Cincinnati Bearcats

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    Worst Class: 2009

    2007 brought quarterback Zach Collaros to the program.

    In 2008, Isaiah Pead arrived on campus.

    Both of those guys were instrumental in the Bearcats' Big East conference success in 2011.

    The 2009 class was destitute of stars.

    It was not a bad class, but there was no Collaros/Pead.

Duke Blue Devils

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    Worst Class: 2010

    Since David Cutcliffe took over as head coach at Duke, the recruiting classes have been solid.

    As a matter of fact, it's better than about 90 percent of non-automatic qualifying teams.

    There's the rub.

    While the ACC is pulling in 3- and 4-star recruits, Duke is just a step behind, which makes it difficult to compete.

Maryland Terrapins

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    Worst Class: 2011

    Randy Edsall is going to get this thing turned around at Maryland.

    He does have some pretty solid talent from previous classes to help him out, but this class did not include the same level of projected talent as those recruited by Edsall's predecessor.

    This was the only class out of the five considered that did not include an ESPN150 recruit.

North Carolina Tar Heels

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This is probably simply due to the fact that these guys are so young.

    Giovani Bernard was a star for the Tar Heels in 2011, and he was a member of this class.

    But in each of the three classes previous to this one, there were multiple defensive stars and multiple ESPN150 recruits.

    No disrespect to Bernard, but this class had only one top-150 recruit, and he has been the only guy to step up as a star thus far.

Boston College Eagles

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    Worst Class: 2008

    The Eagles have had some difficulty winning games since joining the ACC.

    Part of that is due to their recruiting classes.

    While they have the occasional star (Luke Kuechly), the level of recruits being brought into Chestnut Hill is just not on the level to compete with the Clemsons and Virginia Techs of the world.

Miami (FL) Hurricanes

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This is ridiculous.

    The Hurricanes haul in excellent recruit after excellent recruit yet have not been able to be relevant in the ACC in the past decade.

    When the classes are this good, it's tough to pick one.

    The only reason this class gets the nod is because there were only four ESPN150 recruits as compared to the 2008 class, which featured 12.

    Al Golden will get this thing headed in the right direction soon, and he will need to have more excellent recruiting classes to do so.

N.C. State Wolfpack

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    Worst Class: 2007

    This one earns this dubious distinction for a unique reason.

    Russell Wilson was part of this class.

    N.C. State head coach Tom O'Brien let Wilson go when he couldn't decide between football and baseball.

    Wilson transferred to Wisconsin, where he led the Badgers to a Rose Bowl appearance and Big Ten title while setting an NCAA record for passing efficiency.

    Meanwhile, the Wolfpack toiled near the bottom of the ACC.

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

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    Worst Class: 2009

    None of these classes has been awful.

    However, the seasons prior to this one boasted recruits such as Joshua Nesbitt, Tevin Washington and Embry Peeples.

    So I guess this one wins by default.

    Paul Johnson knows what kind of recruit he is looking for and has done a pretty solid job of getting them to Tech.

    Now if they could just win a dang bowl game.

Florida State Seminoles

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Recruiting has been good to the Seminoles over the past five seasons.

    Jimbo Fisher has done a great job of keeping this team near the top of the ACC, and with the talent they can throw on the field, it's only a matter of time before the Seminoles break through.

    This class, while solid, featured fewer top-150 recruits than any of the other classes.

    There were some solid producers in this class, such as wide receiver Taiwan Easterling, but it's not as good as the following years' classes.

Virginia Cavaliers

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    Worst Class: 2008

    The 2007 class featured star cornerback Chase Minnifield.

    Since Mike London took over as head coach the Cavs have started reeling in top-notch recruits.

    The two years between, 2008-2009, were not as kind.

Wake Forest Demon Deacons

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    Worst Class: 2007

    The Deacs served notice this season that they are not going to remain near the bottom of the ACC forever.

    Much of that success can be attributed to the play of members of the '08-'11 recruiting classes.

    While the 2007 group was not awful, it did not quite have the same level of success as the four other classes considered.

Virginia Tech Hokies

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    Worst Class: 2010

    The true potential of this class remains to be seen.

    They are still extremely young and have not had much time to establish themselves.

    However, this class is no match for the previous three seasons, when guys such as David Wilson, Logan Thomas, Jayron Hosley and Ryan Williams were signed.

Clemson Tigers

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Clemson seems to be pulling in incredibly talented guys at an alarming rate over the past few seasons.

    The only reason this class remains at the bottom is because there were no huge stars to emerge from it.

    Xavier Dye was a solid receiving option for a time, and Andre Branch turned into a productive defensive end.

    However, there was no Kyle Parker, Jamie Harper, Andre Ellington or C.J. Spiller.

Minnesota Golden Gophers

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    Worst Class: All of them

    It's been so bad at Minnesota for the past half-decade that the nickname "Goofers" might be appropriate.

    So out of respect to our friends up north, let's just pretend the past five years didn't happen.

    Jerry Kill has a clean slate and the opportunity to make some progress towards picking up some of the state's best recruits.

Indiana Hoosiers

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    Worst Class: 2012

    For the rest of the FBS universe, we have limited the classes to those falling between 2007 and 2011, but because of the drama surrounding the Hoosiers' 2012 top recruit, they have to get an exception.

    Quarterback Gunner Kiel, one of the top recruits in the nation, committed to Indiana originally.

    Why, nobody really knows.

    However, he changed his commit to LSU and then switched from there to Notre Dame.

    This leaves Indiana fans to wonder what could have been.

    Kevin Wilson cannot be too pleased with this turn of events.

Northwestern Wildcats

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    Worst Class: 2009

    In the piece about best recruiting classes, this was my pick for best class.

    However, after further review, it's got to be the worst.

    Every class, from 2007 to 2010, has included a very good player for the Wildcats, including guys such as Drake Dunsmore and Jeremy Ebert.

    Not so with this class, so I have revised my opinion.

Illinois Fighting Illini

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    Worst Class: 2010

    As with any program's 2010 class, this one has had little time to prove itself.

    However, they are going to have a tough time matching the success of the previous classes.

    There is no Arrelious Benn, no Nathan Scheelhaase and no Whitney Mercilus.

    Somebody could step up in a big way, but that remains to be seen.

    On a side note, congrats for booting the Zooker.

Iowa Hawkeyes

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    Worst Class: Every class including a running back other than Shonn Greene

    The list of Iowa running backs that have departed, been injured or been released from the program is getting ridiculous.

    Marcus Coker and Brandon Wegher you may be aware of, but in total, since the 2007 season, the Hawkeyes have had 11 running backs leave the program.

    What is going on with the position?

    Maybe Kirk Ferentz should remove it from the depth chart permanently.

Ohio State Buckeyes

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    Worst Class: 2008

    This class does double duty as the best and worst class.

    The reason?

    Three of the guys from this class were involved in the incident that eventually led to Terrelle Pryor and Jim Tressel disappearing from campus.

    The tattoo parlor incident and Tressel's subsequent cover-up have led to NCAA sanctions.

    Of course, they led to the arrival of Urban Meyer as well, so I guess there is some kind of good to come out of it.

Nebraska Cornhuskers

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    Worst Class: 2010

    Lavonte David is the star of this class thus far, no question.

    However, the rest of the class has yet to set itself apart.

    The 2012 season could be the time for the members of this class to do that, but we shall see.

Purdue Boilermakers

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    Worst Class: 2007

    There is a reason the Boilermakers cannot get back to the top of the B1G:


    This class in particular left a little something to be desired.

    Only five members were graded higher than 70.

    Danny Hope needs to strengthen things on the recruiting front; then the Boilers will enjoy some success within the conference.

Michigan Wolverines

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    Worst Class: 2010

    The Wolverines usually have a pretty good haul come National Signing Day.

    This class was not bad but does not match the level of recruits from the classes immediately prior to it.

    Denard Robinson, Mike Martin, Roy Roundtree—the list goes on.

    This class still has a shot at making an impact, but chances are there will not be a star out of this crop of recruits.

    Some would argue, "But Devin Gardner is part of this class."

    My point exactly.

Penn State Nittany Lions

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    Worst Class: 2008

    This class featured only 14 commits and one ESPN150 recruit.

    Michael Mauti has been plagued by injury, but when on the field, he has lived up to the hype.

    The rest of the class—not so much.

Michigan State Spartans

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Mark Dantonio does not have many bad classes.

    But one has to be the worst.

    This was one of the hardest classes to determine, as it seems every one of the Spartans' classes over the last five years has produced and contributed to the program's success.

    Therefore, we had to go with this one, the simple reason being the best recruits have not yet contributed.

    However, with the attrition taking place in East Lansing this season, there is no doubt these guys will step up and make me eat my words.

Wisconsin Badgers

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    Worst Class: 2010

    The Wisconsin program does an incredible job of recruiting guys who are unheralded out of high school and then turning them into stars.

    The only tangible judge of their classes that we have is the grades going into college.

    This class featured the lowest rating for their top recruit of all five seasons with a 79.

    Of course, speedy running back James White was a part of this class, so we may be misjudging, but that remains to be seen.

Tennessee Volunteers

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Derek Dooley has some solid classes coming into Knoxville.

    This class before his time, however, was a rough one, as it included only 19 guys and one ESPN150 recruit.

    Other than Tauren Poole, this class has been largely ineffective.

Ole Miss Rebels

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Farewell, Houston Nutt.

    Your inability to recruit or coach this team to any modicum of success will not be missed.

Kentucky Wildcats

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    Worst Class: 2011

    Joker Phillips and predecessor Rich Brooks have been pretty consistent when it comes to recruiting classes.

    One or two recruits graded at 80, and they all drop down from there.

    For that reason, and that reason only, this class gets the nod here.

    This class did not feature a recruit rated higher than 79.

    Is Kentucky really a part of the SEC?

Mississippi State Bulldogs

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    Worst Class: 2010

    It wasn't awful, but as each of the previous three seasons had each produced a star at one of the offensive skill positions, this one gets my vote.

    Dan Mullen is making progress, but it's going to take better classes than this to turn things around in Starkville.

    This class had no recruits graded higher than 80 and none in the top 150.

Vanderbilt Commodores

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Vanderbilt has long been the doormat of the SEC, and it's classes like this that are a huge part of the reason.

    This class included only 15 commits, no top-150 recruits and no one who jumped out as a star.

Auburn Tigers

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Neiko Thorpe turned into a semi-productive player in his time with the Tigers, but other than that this class was not all that productive.

    Barrett Trotter has not been that great when he has had an opportunity to play quarterback, and Onterio McCalebb has yet to live up to his potential.

    There have been some really good classes at Auburn over the past five years, but this was not one of them.

Florida Gators

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    Worst Class: 2009

    The 2007 class deserves mention here, as some guy named Cam Newton was a part of it but then transferred.

    However, this class featured only one guy who has had a major impact with the team: linebacker Jelani Jenkins.

Arkansas Razorbacks

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    Worst Class: The one B.P.

    That's right—before Bobby Petrino.

    Since Bobby boy arrived in Fayetteville, the Hogs have had superb recruiting classes, consistently hauling in multiple top-150 recruits, including stars Joe Adams and Tyler Wilson.

    Not so with the 2007 class.

    That class had no recruit rated higher than 79, which for some places is pretty good, but when compared to the rest of Arkansas' stellar classes, it pales.

South Carolina Gamecocks

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    Worst Class: 2008

    The 2011 class only had one top-150 recruit. However, that recruit was the No. 1 prospect in the country, Jadeveon Clowney, so it gains an exemption.

    The worst class the Ol' Ball Coach has had in the past five seasons is the 2008 class, which featured, again, only one top-150 recruit.

    Linebacker Shaq Wilson was part of this class and had potential, but he has been battling injury.

Alabama Crimson Tide

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    Worst Class: 2010

    This is not a bad class, but as the guys who came to 'Bama in it were only sophomores this season, they have yet to make a major impact.

    It has the potential to be a great class, as Nick Saban continues to use his Jedi mind tricks to haul in top recruits.

    That said, it will have a tough time matching the success of the previous two classes, which boasted a Heisman winner and a Heisman finalist.

Georgia Bulldogs

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    Worst Class: 2010

    Let's be perfectly frank about this.

    Like many of the top teams in the SEC, the Dawgs have not had many "bad" classes.

    This one, however, featured the fewest ESPN150 recruits of any class the past five years.

    That said, it did include Jarvis Jones' arrival, and his impact with the Georgia defense this past season was immense.

LSU Tigers

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    Worst Class: 2008

    It's tough to pick a bad class for the Tigers at all, and even this one was not necessarily bad.

    However, it featured only four ESPN150 recruits, including the incredible Patrick Peterson, which is a small number when compared with any of the other years under consideration.

Arizona Wildcats

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    Worst Class: 2010

    No top-150 recruits.

    No stars have emerged from the class.

    While they are still young, this group has not had much of a positive impact on the program.

    The three previous classes all included stars at the skill positions in TE Rob Gronkowski, WR Juron Criner and QB Nick Foles, so this one gets the nod.

Washington State Cougars

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    Worst Class: 2009

    This class included quarterback Jeff Tuel, who, while not a star, has been a serviceable QB for the Cougs.

    Other than that, this class was really slim, totaling only 22 commits, none of them with a grade higher than 76.

    Paul Wulff couldn't coach, but at least he couldn't recruit either.

Colorado Buffaloes

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    Worst Class: 2011

    CU fans are hoping that their team will show some improvement at some point in the near future, but recruiting classes such as this one are not going to cut it.

    There were no recruits in last year's class that were graded higher than 78.

Oregon State Beavers

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Bad, bad, bad.

    There is no other way to describe this class.

    No stars, few starters and no ESPN150 recruits.

Utah Utes

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Let's make sure this is clear.

    The Utes' recruiting success will increase significantly very soon due to their new conference affiliation with the Pac-12.

    It was solid before that, but not excellent.

    This class did not feature a recruit graded higher than 77.

    Kyle Whittingham will see better recruits come into the fold before long.

Cal Golden Bears

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Jeff Tedford's recruiting classes seem to always boast one big star.

    Not so yet for this class.

    While it did feature an ESPN150 recruit in cornerback Steve Williams, nobody has emerged as the best player on the team from this class.

Arizona State Sun Devils

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Star corner Omar Bolden was part of this class as an unheralded recruit.

    However, he was pretty much alone in this class.

Washington Huskies

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    Worst Class: 2007

    The next season featured Chris Polk and Alameda Ta'amu.

    The year after that, Keith Price arrived.

    This class had few starters emerge as consistent options and absolutely no stars.

UCLA Bruins

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    Worst Class: 2011

    Rick Neuheisel did not do a great job of making a dent in the incredible recruits going to rival USC during his time at UCLA.

    Or maybe he just couldn't coach.

    Every class except this one featured multiple ESPN150 recruits, yet the Bruins could not make a serious play for the Pac-12 title.

Stanford Cardinal

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    Worst Class: 2011

    Stanford's classes have been loaded.

    This class is by no means a poor haul for David Shaw.

    However, when compared to classes that included Andrew Luck, Coby Fleener, Stepfan Taylor and Shayne Skov, it comes in second-best.

USC Trojans

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    Worst Class: Too tough to call

    There have been no bad classes for the Trojans in spite of dealing with NCAA sanctions and limitations on recruiting.

    Lane Kiffin has done a great job of navigating those turbulent waters, and every class has had multiple stars.

    If one must be picked, it has to be 2010, simply because Robert Woods is the only star to emerge thus far from that class.

Oregon Ducks

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    Worst Class: 2007

    It's pretty impressive when your worst class of the past five seasons includes names such as Casey Matthews, Carson York and Jeff Maehl.

    However, the other classes included LaMichael James, Lache Seastrunk, De'Anthony Thomas and Darron Thomas.

Kansas Jayhawks

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Turner Gill did not get enough time at Kansas.

    His recruiting classes over the past few years have been better than the classes immediately prior to his tenure.

    The 2007 class had no recruits as part of it that were graded higher than 76.

Texas Tech Red Raiders

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Adam James was a part of this class.

    James' treatment was the heart of a controversy involving head coach Mike Leach, the university and James' father, former football star Craig James.

    The controversy eventually led to Leach's dismissal.

Iowa State Cyclones

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Paul Rhoads has the Cyclones at the middle of the Big 12 standings instead of their usual spot at the bottom of the conference.

    This is because his recruiting classes are good compared to this one.

    No recruit in this class was graded higher than 74.

Texas A&M Aggies

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    Worst Class: 2009

    The Aggies seem to have great classes over the past five years, so it's mind-boggling how poorly they played this season.

    This class, outside of running back Christine Michael, was pretty much destitute of stars, so it gets my vote for worst class.

Texas Longhorns

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    Worst Class: 2009


    Because, in spite of boasting nine top-150 recruits, one guy pulled this class down:

    Garrett Gilbert.

    The Longhorns' highest-rated recruit in that season was so ineffective that he lost his starting job.

Missouri Tigers

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    Worst Class: 2007

    Gary Pinkel has had some pretty solid recruits make their way to Mizzou during his time there.

    This class was not one that featured said recruits.

    None of the guys in this class turned into big producers, and few of them were major contributors as starters.

Oklahoma Sooners

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    Worst Class: 2008

    Landry Jones is the only good thing to come out of this class, and even he is not a superstar.

    He makes too many mistakes.

    The 2007 class was incredible, as were 2009 and 2010.

    This one, however, had only one guy (Jones) who has really left his mark on the program.

Baylor Bears

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    Worst Class: 2007

    This was one class before Kendall Wright and Robert Griffin III arrived at Baylor.

    Therefore, it pales in comparison to classes immediately following it.

    That is not the only reason why.

    This class had no ESPN150 recruits.

Kansas State Wildcats

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    Worst Class: 2010

    So far, this class has failed to have a star emerge for Bill Snyder's team.

    None of the five classes considered have great recruits, but this one featured none rated 80 or higher.

Oklahoma State Cowboys

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    Worst Class: 2009

    Clint Chelf may prove me wrong next season when he gets a shot at the quarterback position.

    However, for now, this class remains here.

    None of the guys that were part of this class have been major producers as of yet.

    That's not to say Mike Gundy will not turn them into stars next season.