Golden Nuggets: Do recruits' rankings lead to on-field success?

How important are recruit rankings? Does OSU's Mike Riley really do more with less? - CalBearsOnline.com

Athlon Sports crunches some numbers on the Pac-12's recruits and corresponding win-loss records.

Athlon Sports has compiled the rankings of each recruiting class over the past five years and the win-loss records over that time span for all Pac-12 school to validate their belief that recruiting rankings is a key factor in predicting on-field success. The past five years have been so successful for Cal, so let's see what they found!


Team '14 '13 '12 '11 '10 Avg. W/L Conf.
1 USC 11 12 9 3 3 7.6 3517 2313
2 Oregon 21 19 13 12 13 15.6 476 324
3 UCLA 19 7 19 45 10 20.0 2924 1917
4 Stanfurd 13 51 7 22 22 23.0 468 315
5 Washington 37 18 23 24 14 23.2 3022 2016
6 Cal 48 39 34 15 19 31.0 1633 927
7 Arizona State 23 40 35 65 31 38.8 3022 2115
8 Arizona 31 44 31 48 47 42.2 2724 1422
9 Utah 63 47 37 40 42 45.8 2822 1619
10 Oregon State 61 45 44 43 46 47.8 2426 1719
11 Washington State 65 54 58 67 60 60.8 1534 828
12 Colorado 76 68 39 64 65 62.4 1336 629

With this data, they drew a number of conclusions about coaching changes/success and which program rules the conference. What did they learn about Cal?

Cal has always had a strong recruiting presence on the West Coast. However, the Bears' recruiting trend might be concerning as the national recruiting ranking for Cal has dropped four years in row from 15th in 2011 to 48th in '14. Despite all of that talent, nine total wins in the league from 2010-12 is why Sonny Dykes is now in charge in Berkeley. This is still the sixth-best roster in the league, however, and it means that Dykes shouldn't have to work miracles to get his Bears back on the winning track. But if Cal wants to compete with the likes of Oregon and Stanford, he will have to start by rebuilding his program's image on the recruiting trail as well as on the field.

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