Power Ranking Big 12 Football Coaches by Recruiting Skills
The Big 12 has undergone radical changes over its recent seasons. Mack Brown is no longer the head coach at Texas. Baylor is one of the best teams in the country. Texas Tech has legit confidence. Plus, Oklahoma State is now respected on the recruiting trail.
Recruiting in the Big 12 has always been competitive, and that continues today. As a head coach in this league, you and your staff must be willing to do your best to lure talented players to your campus.
Some Big 12 head coaches excel at this, while some don't.
Wild Card: Charlie Strong, Texas
It's debatable if Charlie Strong should be on this list, but he will be left out of the rankings since he just got to Texas.
However, it's worth noting that Strong has recruited well as an assistant at Florida and as the head coach at Louisville.
Look for him to continue Texas' tradition of harvesting most of its recruiting crops in its own state, but Strong also figures to make the Longhorns bigger players on the Florida recruiting trail due to his connections in the Sunshine State.
9. Bill Snyder, Kansas State
Snyder is a terrific coach, but recruiting just isn't his thing. He has the No. 7 class in the Big 12 right now, says 247Sports, which is a high ranking for the Wildcats based on where they've been in the past. Snyder had the worst class in the Big 12 in 2013 and 2010.
8. Paul Rhoads, Iowa State
The defining reason why head coach Paul Rhoads isn't ranked lower is because he has done a great job of holding on to the commitment of 4-star receiver Allen Lazard. Yet the Cyclones finish near the bottom of the Big 12 recruiting rankings every February.
7. Charlie Weis, Kansas
Kansas head coach Charlie Weis was once on the verge of becoming one of the best recruiting head coaches in the business at Notre Dame.
Yet he's been a recruiting flop at Kansas. Weis currently has the worst class in the conference, per 247Sports, plus he also was last in Big 12 recruiting in 2012. In 2013, he signed 34 recruits, but only one of them was a 4-star prospect.
6. Dana Holgorsen, West Virginia
That equates to him being a middle-of-the-pack recruiter in the Big 12, which is why he is ranked here. Holgorsen has shown he can sign a 4-star recruit or two, but he's not dominant on the recruiting trail.
5. Gary Patterson, TCU
TCU joined the Big 12 for the 2012 season, so head coach Gary Patterson's recruiting efforts will be evaluated based on what he's done since joining the conference.
He finished fifth in the Big 12 recruiting rankings in 2012, per 247sports, as Patterson signed an impressive 24-man class that featured four 4-star recruits. In 2013, TCU finished at No. 6, and it is currently ninth in 2014 recruiting.
Patterson and his staff are great evaluators, but it's time they start to consistently snag better quality.
4. Kliff Kingsbury, Texas Tech
Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury may be young for a head coach, but he has the charisma to become an excellent recruiter.
The Red Raiders are not known for their impressive recruiting, but Kingsbury rallied for a No. 7 247Sports Big 12 recruiting rankings finish with his first class in 2013. Texas Tech is currently hovering at No. 6 in the 2014 247Sports Big 12 recruiting rankings.
Kingsbury's arrow as a coach and recruiter is pointing up.
3. Mike Gundy, Oklahoma State
Things haven't always been peachy on the recruiting trail for Oklahoma head coach Mike Gundy, but he's done well as a recruiter as of late.
Gundy signed the nation's No. 25 class in 2011, per 247Sports. He finished 27th nationally in 2010, 23rd in 2007 and his 2006 group was 17th in the country. Right now, Oklahoma State is No. 29 in the 247Sports recruiting rankings.
Gundy has quietly become one of the best recruiting head coaches in the Big 12.
2. Art Briles, Baylor
Briles has built the Bears into one of the best programs in the Big 12, and he's done it through solid recruiting. With Baylor's breakout season on a national scale this year, it will not be surprising to see Briles begin to bring in even better talent to Waco.
1. Bob Stoops, Oklahoma
Although Oklahoma is not as dominant a recruiting program as it has been in the past, head coach Bob Stoops is still one of the best.
The Sooners routinely find themselves in the top 25 recruiting rankings and are No. 24 in the country right now, according to 247Sports. Stoops knows how to mine his state for talent, but he is excellent at striking gold in nearby Texas.
Stoops also reaches out to other states such as California, Florida, Arizona and Nevada for prospects. He's the best recruiting head coach in the Big 12.