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WILLIAMS BLOG: On Thursday night at least, stars did matter

(Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports.)

I am usually kind of indifferent when it comes to recruiting rankings. You can’t just ignore them. Five-star guys – at the time at least – are usually better than two-star guys for multiple reasons.

I think even the most obnoxious anti-recruiting critics out there can agree with that.

But the overwhelming key when it comes to getting guys to the NFL is development – an area where Iowa State specifically has struggled over the last 10 years or so.

I want to give proper credit to Chip Patterson from CBS, as he did all of this research. Because of our constant emphasis on recruiting, I also wanted to show that work here on Cyclone Fanatic.

Last night, the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft set a record for the number of former five-star recruits selected at 10.

As for the top 10 picks:

1 (Browns) – Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M – 5 stars

2 (Bears) – Mitchell Trubiski, QB, North Carolina – 4 stars

3 (49ers) – Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford – 5 stars

4 (Jaguars) – Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU – 5 stars

5 (Titans) – Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan – 2 stars

6 (Jets) – Jamal Adams, SS, LSU – 5 stars

7 (Rams) – Mike Williams, WR, Clemson – 4 stars

8 (Panthers) – Christian McCaffrey, Stanford – 4 stars

9 (Bengals) – John Ross, WR, Washington – 4 stars

10 (Chiefs) – Patrick Mahomes, Texas Tech, 3 – stars

For a junkie like me, the above is fascinating.

A couple of other notes:

Two first round picks didn’t have any stars coming out of high school – those being Haason Reddick (Temple, OLB) to Arizona at pick No. 13. The Saints drafted Wisconsin offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk at pick No. 32.

— 22 of the 32 players taken last night were 4 or 5-star recruits out of high school.

All in all, it was a tough night for the Big 12 Conference. Considering 2o16 was overwhelming thought of as a rebuilding year for the league, this wasn’t a big surprise. The key to the league’s football health will really be next year’s draft.