FanShot

Top Recruiting Classes Produce Mixed Results

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While not as prevalent since our Championship run, still we’ve all heard it or read it somewhere, "Calipari is a great salesman but not a great coach; all he does is roll the balls out and let his recruited talent do their thing." Well here’s an article I came across on Rush The Court (Link) that analyzes the NCAA Tournament success of the last 10 years of top recruiting classes. Bottomline: their results illustrate just how amazing a job Calipari has done coaching successive groups of basketball savants to post-season success compared to the results his colleagues achieved attempting the same arduous coaching feat - totally standing that slur on its head. "The incredible success of Kentucky’s one-and-done recruiting strategy over the past couple of years (two Final Fours, one National Championship) has helped foster the idea that top recruiting classes will result in immediate hardware. But let’s not forget that winning titles with youngsters has been more of an anomaly than the norm. A review of recent history shows that top recruiting classes have resulted in failure nearly as much as sustained winning." I’m reminded of all the criticism that Coach Dean Smith used to get for failing to win more championships despite the incredible number of top recruits he routinely brought in throughout his era at UNC. This article just goes to illustrate, capitalizing on talented recruiting classes is one heck of a lot more than "just rolling the balls out on the court."

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