Today is National Signing Day, a day that will forever change the lives of countless young men in this country. It's a day when dreams are fulfilled and collegiate fan bases rejoice. But as we know, prep rankings aren't everything. In fact, last Sunday's Super Bowl didn't feature a single former 5 star recruit.
The Falcons have a wealth of talent on their roster, but some guys were more heralded than others coming out of high school. Let's break down the prep careers of some fan favorites.
Ryan was a nationally unranked, 3 star recruit coming out of high school. He was the 25th ranked pro style QB and 12th best player in Pennsylvania. The 1st ranked pro style quarterback that year was Kyle Wright, a 5 star recruit that went to Miami. Wright went undrafted and played briefly for the Vikings and 49ers, never logging any regular season appearances. Looking for an explantation for Ryan's unheralded prep career? Then look no further than his high school team's offensive scheme of choice; they ran a Wing T offense, a run-heavy approach that primarily asks the QB to be a game manager. He did receive offers from Iowa, Georgia Tech, and Purdue.
Matthews was a 4 star recruit and the 48th ranked player nationally as a high school senior. He was the 7th ranked tackle and 8th best player in Texas. He weighed just 280 pounds and there were concerns about his pass blocking. Apparently Matthews played quarterback as a high school freshman before making the transition to offensive lineman as a sophomore.
Douglas was an unranked, 3 star recruit coming out of high school. He was a three sport athlete with a budding affection for women's deodorant. He was recruited as a junior but the interest was lukewarm before his senior campaign. He had elite athleticism already, running a 4.45 40 yard dash and sporting a 32 inch vertical.
Bartu was an unranked, 2 star recruit coming out of high school. He weighed just 200 pounds and played safety and wide receiver. He did have 6 receiving touchdowns as a senior, averaging almost 15 yards/reception. He'd actually bulked up considerably since his freshman year, when he was listed at 5'6 and 135 pounds. As a senior, his team made it to the quarterfinals of the Texas State Playoffs.
Ishmael was an unranked, 2 star recruit coming out of high school. He committed to UCF despite interest from Western Michigan and WVU. Coming out of high school, he was classified as an "athlete," standing 5'11 and weighing just 175 pounds.
Allen was a 3 star recruit and the 29th best cornerback nationally as a high school senior. He had offers from some great football schools, including Michigan and Ole Miss. Despite his relatively small stature, he was the 4th ranked physical cornerback in the country, impressing many college scouts at the FBU Top Gun event the summer before his senior season.
Bosher was a top secret, government sanctioned cyborg built to save humanity. He was also a 3 star recruit and the 6th best kicker in the country as a high school senior. As a high school junior, he knocked down 8 of 10 field goal attempts, including a 47 yarder. His only official visit was to Miami, where he ultimately committed.
Massaquoi was a 3 star recruit and the 60th best JUCO player in 2009. He was a 2 star recruit in high school, receiving no offers until the June before his senior season. He had interest from several SEC schools, including Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida. His only offers as a high school senior came from Memphis, Chattanooga, and Indiana. He'd attend Butler County Community College for a year before transferring to Troy.
So there you have it. A true mixed bag. Your thoughts?