Comparing Careers: OSU Five-Star Recruits

So, are five-star recruits really worth the hype? It's a question that comes up regularly when recruiting is discussed, so we thought we would take a look at how they have performance at Ohio State compared to their counterparts.

Urban Meyer admitted on National Signing Day he pays attention to the recruiting rankings, at least insomuch that he would like to see his team finish as high as possible if they're going to be part of any competition.

That does not mean the head coach of the Buckeyes and his staff use recruiting rankings to pick out their prospects, but it is an acknowledgement that they have some validity when it comes to measuring talent around the country.

Meyer further acknowledged he is aware of such rankings in March when he was asked on the Big Ten coaches spring teleconference about them.

"A five-star recruit usually has a better career than another one," Meyer said, perhaps thinking of players such as Mike Brewster, Ted Ginn Jr. and Donte Whitner. "There's always examples of a young, late-developer, but that's an interesting question. Those recruiting analysts aren't bad now. They do a good job."

That higher-rated recruits -- a group that also includes the likes of Beanie Wells, John Simon and Alex Boone, all of whom made All-Big Ten first team during their time in Columbus -- generally outperform their counterparts is not breaking news, but we thought we would take a look specifically at Ohio State to see if there is a difference in success rate based on star rating.

These are the results:

Recruit study

So the simple answer is yes, Meyer is correct when he says five-star players at Ohio State have tended to have better careers than their counterparts. At least that has been the case over the past eight years, a span covering the first available Scout star ratings (2002) through the last class that has no members left on the current team (2009).

In fact, this is a resounding yes as the five-star players had higher percentages of being starters, being first-team All-Big Ten, first-team All-America and drafted by an NFL team than the group as a whole, and they transferred out or simply did not make it through to the end of their eligibility (or the draft) at a lower rate.

They also came from Ohio at a slightly higher rate. What's not to like?

For every Mike D'Andrea, whose career was cut short by injuries, or Connor Smith, who just never won a starting spot, there are the Ginns, Whitners, Brewsters, Simons and others.

Next up? We take a look at how four-star and three-star recruits compare to each other and overall.

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