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College football recruiting is overrated

They say the college football season never really ends. When the games are over and a champion is crowned, coaching searches and recruiting take center stage in college football news. However, recruiting and the way it is currently handled by all parties involved makes it completely irrelevant.

First off, player ratings make no sense and do not really capture a recruit’s true potential. If you don’t believe me, let’s look at past Ole Miss players as incoming recruits. Some of the Rebs’ best players were not highly rated or recruited.

Patrick Willis was a two-star recruit and was not only one of the best Ole Miss players to ever play, but is also a perennial Pro Bowl linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers.

Mike Wallace was also a two-star recruit who came to Ole Miss and turned into one of the best wide receivers in the NFL for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Dexter McCluster was a three-star athlete who finished his career with more than 1,700 receiving yards and just under 2,000 rushing yards and is now a young star for the Kansas City Chiefs.

There have been big busts at Ole Miss as well.

Transfer quarterback Brent Schaeffer, who left the University of Tennessee, went to junior college and came to Ole Miss after being a five-star recruit. Schaeffer never lived up to all the hype, and some credit him with multiple Ole Miss losses. He’s just the tip of the iceberg of players highly regarded out of high school but who never panned out or never even made it onto campus at Ole Miss.

Every team has stories like this on both sides of the spectrum. And I know there needs to be some sort of rating system in place, but treating these guys as kings before they do anything in an Ole Miss uniform is borderline insanity.

Secondly, the way commitments work with recruits should not be made public until National Signing Day, or recruits should be able to sign when they make up their mind before February.

All the committing and decommitting gets confusing and frustrating. Recruits are just kids. One minute they want one thing, and the next they want another. If they commit to a university, the NCAA should make them stick with that commitment. If we want our football players to be upstanding people and stay out of trouble, it starts with keeping their word. Plus, this would cut down on recruiting violations once a recruit is for sure locked in at another university.

Recruiting is confusing and frustrating, and the airtime it receives is way too much. It is a necessary evil to produce a winning or even a competitive football team in the Southeastern Conference. All I ask is that we, as fans, take a step back and see that these players haven’t done anything yet and they are not the best players to ever play at Ole Miss before they even play a down of college football.