National recruiting and scouting websites use ratings to compare prospects and what level of competition they're worthy of. For example, a five-star recruit would probably fall in the hands of Alabama, Florida or Texas, etc.
There are prospects that are given two stars, and then there are some with no rating—these recruits usually head to Mid-American Conference or Conference USA programs, in terms of Division-1A football.
But do these ratings matter? What are their significance? Are they even accurate?
Below is a list of the 10 worst recruiting class from 2010, per 247Sports Team Rankings (not including South Alabama or Georgia State, which weren't members of the FBS at the time). I have taken their "recruiting rankings" and matched it up with their win-loss records from '10-12.
|Team||'10 Team Ranking||'10 record||'11 record||'12 record|
|Western Kentucky Hilltoppers||108||2-10 (2-6)||7-5 (7-1)||7-6 (4-4)|
|Eastern Michigan Eagles||109||2-10 (2-6)||6-6 (4-4)||2-10 (1-7)|
|Boise State Broncos||110||12-1 (7-1)||12-1 (7-1)||11-2 (7-1)|
|Ohio Bobcats||111||8-5 (6-2)||10-4 (7-2)||9-4 (4-4)|
|North Texas Mean Green||112||3-9 (3-5)||5-7 (4-4)||4-8 (3-5)|
|Mid Tennessee Blue Raiders||113||6-7 (5-3)||2-10 (1-7)||8-4 (6-2)|
|LA-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns||114||3-9 (3-5)||9-4 (6-2)||9-4 (6-2)|
|LA-Monroe Warhawks||115||5-7 (4-4)||4-8 (3-5)||8-5 (6-2)|
|Florida Atlantic Owls||116||4-8 (3-5)||1-11 (0-8)||3-9 (2-6)|
|Northwestern Wildcats||117||7-6 (3-5)||6-7 (3-4)||10-3 (5-3)|
In most cases, freshmen rarely see the field and have little-to-no impact on the team's win-loss record—so we'll look at the 2011 season first. Five of the 10 teams had at least six wins, and six of them had a win increase from the year before.
In 2012, seven of the 10 teams had at least six wins, and eight of them had either the same record or better than they did in 2010. Altogether, teams No. 108-117 combined for a 71-55 record last season, which is an astounding 14.4 percent increase from 2010.
Northwestern, the only member of this list from a BCS-qualifying school, won 10 games last season and is expected to vie for the Big Ten Legends Division this fall. Louisiana at Lafayette has one of the most explosive offenses in the country, Ohio will contend for the MAC again, Western Kentucky is looking to win the Sun Belt, and Boise State always tends to do more with less.
Seven of the listed programs were bowl eligible in 2012-13. The class of 2010 still has another year left to leave its mark. The question is this: Are recruiting services accurate?
The stats show not always, but it does give us something fun to talk about in the dead months of the offseason.
Follow @Tyler_Waddell on Twitter