Ram tough

Former Arizona State linebacker and NFL safety started out as a walk-on at ASU.

By Associated Press

The internet has been one of the most important and fascinating inventions of all times.

And yet not so much.

At least not when it comes to the ranking of high school athletes by websites as they hand out 5-stars to the elite, 4-stars to the very good and on down the line.

After national signing day came to an end on Wednesday programs were graded on their recruiting classes by how many 5- and 4-star players they were able to convince to commit to their college.

I say phooey.

Get back to me in two or three years and then tell dole out a grade.

Yes, you can look at certain players – Mountain Pointe’s Jalen Brown for example – and see they have the ability to be impact players at the next level, but there are plenty of example of players who started out as walk-ons or lowly-rated recruits who have gone on to stardom.

“It is not an exact science at all,” Ahwatukee resident and Higley head coach Eddy Zubey said. “The stuff inside is immeasurable. When I was at Del La Salle all the talk was Maurice Drew was too little. You know Maurice Jones Drew (the 2011 NFL rushing leader). You can get egg on your face because you can never tell.”

There are plenty of other examples – Pat Tillman, Levi Jones, Adam Archuleta to name a few at Arizona State alone – of players who barely got a sniff from college recruiters coming out of high school but made an impact in college before heading to the NFL.

So enjoy your favorite college team’s recruiting class and the hype that comes with it, but the better story in the years to come just might be someone who college coaches didn’t take a shot on and the websites didn’t deem worthy enough to earn a star rating.

Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or jskoda@ahwatukee.com. Follow him on Twitter @JSkodaAFN.

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