Nice commitment you got there, Mr. Three Star. Shame if anything were to happen to it.

While I appreciate the lack of sympathy on display there for Nick Saban’s whining about the early signing period, that’s not what really has his knickers in a wad.  This is:

The other factor is that Arizona doesn’t have any five-star recruits and isn’t in the running for any. Rivals recently elevated defensive end Adam Plant of Las Vegas to a four-star recruit. Everyone else has three stars.

Plant, who de-committed from Arizona in June and re-committed in November, isn’t expected to sign until February. Analysts believe many of those decisions will fall along those lines: The higher-rated players will wait and bask in the courting process, while the lower- and mid-tier prospects will sign now with schools that expressed interest in them from the outset.

As such, the schools that traditionally sit atop the recruiting rankings — and often swoop in for players very late in the process — probably will land smaller hauls during the early signing period.

“If you’re a four- or five-star, they’re not going to say you’re out” if you don’t sign, Biggins said. “But if you’re a two- or three-star, you’re committed to a school like Nevada and you don’t sign, they’re going to keep recruiting your position.”

Biggins and Gorney say that dynamic puts pressure on prospects who aren’t in that elite class. It isn’t quite at the ultimatum level, but the message is clear: Sign with us now or we’ll move on.

Therein lies the rub.  Alabama isn’t going to fill its 2018 class this week.  There will a few recruits left to sign by the traditional February signing date.  In years past, that would leave Saban and his staff time to turn up a few underappreciated nuggets as well as flip a few recruits from other schools who simply couldn’t match the opportunity being presented.

That script’s been changed, though.  “Bird in hand” has a lot more leverage now than it used to.  The three-star recruit who was told last year to wait and see if something might come up in Tuscaloosa didn’t have much to lose by waiting, since his existing offer with Southwestern State A&M was still on the table.  This year, though, he’s got to weigh losing that offer if he doesn’t sign early against keeping his fingers crossed that Mr. Medical Hardship actually comes through in a couple of months.  Any way you want to look at that, it’s not as appealing for the recruit — which means it’s not as appealing for Saban, either.



Filed under Nick Saban Rules, Recruiting

9 responses to “Nice commitment you got there, Mr. Three Star. Shame if anything were to happen to it.

  1. Wednesday is going to be interesting. It sounds like a lot of our class is ready to sign. With some of the recent stuff on social media, I wouldn’t be surprised if Justin Fields’s LOI is one of them. The borderline *** is going to have a tough decision to make. Sign now to secure a spot or wait to see if the offer from a big-time program is coming. I only hope those kids get good counsel from parents and coaches and make the decision best for them.


  2. Hogbody Spradlin

    Conversely, if Second Tier U doesn’t sign its sole 4 or 5 star commit in December, its probably tough enchiladas too when the Death Star comes calling.


  3. Tim B

    The pool of recruits is about to be reduced dramatically while the number of schools recruiting remains the same. The attention is going to be intense for the higher rated unsigned players leading up to the late period.


  4. mg4life0331

    Saban will have to be more honest with the 3 star as well. When Mr. 3 star says hey I’m ready to sign, Saban will say oh you have to wait until Feb sorry.


  5. Macallanlover

    Suspect those conversations have been held already for most of the Top 12 schools. although the 3 stars constitute the largest group that fall as “tweeners”. Looking forward to how this all plays out in Round 1 on Wednesday. Showdown poker for many, now who will be the bluffers and callers?


  6. doofusdawg

    This and the hard 25 limit may turn out to be positive for the reallocation/redistribution of talent though out college football. I wonder if that was part of the ncaa plan or just unintended consequences. Does anybody really think those folks are that smart… I wonder if they are even smart enough to take credit.. or if they even think it’s a good thing.


  7. W Cobb Dawg

    Idk, I’m assuming the best recruiters will still get the lions share of the best players. It’ll be really interesting to see who wins round 1 of the 2-round recruiting war this week. Established coaches have a bigger advantage over the newer HCs who’ve only been on the job a matter of days or a couple weeks. If Kirby has 18 or more commitments at the end of the week it’ll be awesome.

    Speaking of 3-star recruits, seems to me Kirby’s done pretty well. Marshall, McGhee, Herrien, and Kindley come to mind.


  8. CB

    Southwestern State A&M seems a little hyperbolic. Maybe you sign early with NC State or Duke, and miss out on an opportunity to play in the SEC, but it’s still major college football, plus you can always transfer.

    In summation: NBD.