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Feb
01
2012

ACC Recruiting Winners and Losers and what it means for the future.

Wednesday was National Signing Day… Some ACC teams really helped themselves while others merely just kept treading water. As we all know winning in February doesn’t mean squat come the fall, but like said before I’ll take my top-notch class against your poor one anyday.

Winners

Florida State, Clemson, Miami, Duke?

The first three schools should never win fewer than 8 games, EVER. Frankly the fact that the three haven’t dominated the ACC in recent years is kind of surprising. Why because these are the only 3 schools in the ACC that can recruit at a truly elite level, and they did it again 2012.

Florida State signed an astonishing 8 top 100 players. Miami had 8 4 star or better players and Clemson had 9. With the impending NCAA rulings still waiting Miami, Hurricane coach Al Golden gets an A+ for reeling in one of the country’s best classes. Now Noles, Tigers, and Canes translate this to the field and you are top a 15 team year in and year out.

Duke? What is Duke doing here. The BlueDevils picked up two solid 3 star commits on the final day and there is some talent coming. Duke’s not going to recruit at a high level, but check the offer list of some of the guys they have coming in. It’s a credible class in Durham in 2012.

The State of Virginia

I’ve been critical of Frank Beamer several times here in his failure to get elite players to Blacksburg. Despite all the 10 win seasons, and ACC Titles, you got the feeling the Hokies had reached a ceiling. This year Beamer brought in a class that while wasn’t to the FSU, Clemson, Miami level is a very high quality one. The Hokies signed two 4 star players Joel Caleb and Ken Ekanem on Wednesday. The class should keep in the Hokies competing for ACC Titles for years to come.

Virginia keeps their rebuilding project going. Eli Harold is largely considered one of the top 10 linebacker projects in the country and he’s going to Cavaliers.

Losers

When you consider that UNC changed coaches, and Randy Edsall was coming off a 2-10 season at Maryland and both put at worst put equivalent classes to NC State and Georgia Tech you got a problem. Both teams are coming off  8 win seasons, and neither produced what I would call more than average classes. Now before Wolfpack and Yellow Jacket fans get up in arms, look these guys haven’t played a down, and there might be 10 All-Americans between them, but right now in February Tom O’Brien and Paul Johnson aren’t exciting anyone. This isn’t just this season; ESPN documented the two schools recruiting issues over the last few years. That said NC State has won 17 games the last two years, and Georgia Tech hasn’t missed going to a bowl game since mid 90s, so what does that tell you? Well Paul Johnson won the 2009 ACC Title with a team that consisted largely of their best class of the decade, the 2007 one.

Treading Water

Jim Grobe does it his way at Wake Forest, Recruit, then red-shirt then play them. That’s how he does and this class is no different. It’s hard to see Boston College’s class getting them back into the upper division of the ACC, but you never know.

That’s the beauty of recruiting. We can make assessments now, but you don’t know how it will turn out. Boise State and TCU have done fine with, on paper average, recruiting, but it sure is nice to have that WR that can run a 4.3 40.


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