ACC Recruiting Breakdown: 2006-2010

ACC Recruiting Breakdown: 2006-2010

I decided to take a look at Virginia Tech’s recruiting classes over the last four years (2006-09) along with the verbal commitments for next year (2010) against the rest of the ACC. I chose this timeframe because a) it includes all the players that are currently on ACC rosters (all seniors from last year would have been in the Class of 2005 and weren’t included), b) the ACC had completed expansion by this point, and c) each new team (miami, bc, and VT) had played at least one full season in the league.

I had two main questions I wanted answered:

  1. Is Virginia Tech the only school that hasn’t signed a 5-star recruit during this timeframe?
  2. How do VT’s classes rank against the rest of the league?

Here are a couple of things to note as you review the results:

  • My data includes ALL players signed by a school from 2006-10, even if they left early (no longer on the roster), or in some cases, never made it
  • I used and for my data
  • Both Rivals and Scout rank the top 25 players in the nation in a given class as 5-star
  • Guys ranked #26-100 are the 4-star recruits for
  • has a few more 4-stars than Rivals but also cuts off at around 100

Here are the results split up by Rivals and Scout.


  • Avg Per Recruit — take the total number of stars for a team’s recruits and divide by the number of recruits (ex.  a 4-star and a 3-star would equal 3.50)
  • Average Rank — where a school ranks in terms of average stars per recruit against the other ACC schools
  • 5 stars — total number of 5-star recruits the school has signed 2006-10
  • 4 stars — total number of 4-star recruits the school has signed 2006-10
  • Sum — combined number of 4-star and 5-star recruits by school
  • % of 4/5 Stars — take the sum of 4 and 5-star recruits and divide by the total number of recruits; this shows the percentage of recruits that are in the Top 100 of their class
  • 4/5 Star Rank — where a school ranks in terms of percentage of 4 or 5-star recruits against the other ACC schools Data:

Team Avg Per Recruit Average Rank 5 stars 4 stars Sum % of 4/5 Stars 4/5 Star Rank
VT 3.19 10 0 4 4 25.0% 10
bc 3.00 12 0 0 0 0 12
clemson 3.12 11 1 2 3 17.6% 11
duke 4.29 1 6 6 12 85.7% 2
fsu 3.63 5 3 5 8 50.0% 6
ga tech 3.86 3 3 6 9 64.3% 3
md 3.29 9 0 7 7 41.2% 8
miami 3.33 7 1 4 5 33.3% 9
unc 4.24 2 6 9 15 88.2% 1
nc state 3.60 6 2 6 8 53.3% 5
uva 3.32 8 0 8 8 42.1% 7
wake 3.79 4 3 9 12 63.2% 4 Data:

Team Avg Per Recruit Average Rank 5 stars 4 stars Sum % of 4/5 Stars 4/5 Star Rank
VT 3.31 9 0 7 7 43.8% 8
bc 3.21 10 0 5 5 35.7% 12
clemson 3.38 8 1 6 7 43.8% 8
duke 4.50 1 8 8 16 100.0% 1
fsu 3.86 4 3 7 10 71.4% 3
ga tech 3.93 3 5 3 8 57.1% 5
md 3.17 11 0 7 7 38.9% 11
miami 3.50 7 2 7 9 56.3% 6
unc 4.41 2 8 8 16 94.1% 2
nc state 3.56 6 3 5 8 50.0% 7
uva 3.15 12 0 8 8 40.0% 10
wake 3.70 5 2 11 13 65.0% 4

Review of Question 1: Is Virginia Tech the only school that hasn’t signed a 5-star recruit (2006-10)?

Obviously the answer is no.  boston college, maryland, and uva also failed to get a 5-star recruit (in either source) in the last four classes and haven’t gotten a verbal from one for next year, either.  And clemson got just one – Milton Jennings, a freshman this year.  But the other seven schools got at least two according to Scout (miami only got one according to Rivals).

It is no surprise that duke and unc have picked up over half a dozen 5-stars, but schools like nc state and georgia tech, who have really struggled in recent years, have picked up multiple 5-stars.  Yes, I realize this is due to the fact they are name programs, but then look at clemson, fsu, and miami.  None of them would be considered basketball schools, and have very little history as programs, but all three have seen a marked improvement in recruiting in the last couple of years.  They have greatly improved their average per recruit in the last few years (and with their verbals this year).  The results have paid off on the court – fsu got a first round bye last year in the ACC Tournament for the first time in years, clemson has received a bye two years in a row, and miami made the NCAA Tournament two years ago.  Virginia Tech was able to translate their success in 2006-07 into very solid class that included Allen, Delaney, Hudson, Thompson, and Bell, but haven’t been able to reproduce that quality of recruit since.

Review of Question 2: How do VT’s classes rank against the rest of the league?

If you take the average of the Rivals and Scout ranking per recruit, they shake out as such:

  1. duke (4.39)
  2. unc (4.32)
  3. georgia tech (3.89)
  4. wake (3.74)
  5. (tie) fsu (3.74)
  6. nc state (3.58)
  7. miami (3.42)
  8. VT (3.25)
  9. (tie) clemson (3.25)
  10. uva (3.23)
  11. maryland (3.23)
  12. bc (3.11)

You can see from this that the Hokies are very much towards the bottom of the league. But you could argue that it is quite an accomplishment that they are on par with (and slightly ahead of) schools like uva and maryland who have been in the ACC for over 50 years, have much larger basketball arenas, and have more history as programs. Even boston college has been more successful on the court than the Hokies over the last 10 years, but are the bottom feeders of the ACC in recruiting. Tech is where you would expect them to be on this list. miami might be a little higher than one would expect, but they also have near perfect weather and are in a big city, which always helps with basketball, unlike college football where schools in big/NFL cities struggle.


Head Coach Seth Greenberg has continually gone after recruits that fit his system (hard nosed, defensive basketball). He’s landed gritty three or four-star recruits. Tech has not been able to get a stud five-star guy on his watch. It is hard to say if it is because Seth hasn’t spent much time on them or because they wouldn’t give Virginia Tech the time of day. I doubt it is the former, as I’m sure Coach has selectively gone after big time recruits that we had an ‘in’ with, either due to being local or some other connection.

Now Virginia Tech has a brand new, state-of-the art practice facility. Coach Greenberg calls it our “wow factor”. It will be interesting to see if it pays dividends in Tech’s recruiting classes. The Hokies already have a Top-100 player in this class (Jarell Eddie) and have a fringe Top-100 verbal from the class of 2011 (Robert Brown). But will the Hokies be able to jump up and pick up an elite Top 25, 5-star guy? Or even a Top 50 recruit? Time will tell.

I should also note the old adage: “be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.” Both nc state and georgia tech have been burned by 5-star guys in recent years. The yellow jackets signed two in 2006 and promptly went 8-8 the next season, after which both prize freshmen left for the NBA (Crittenton and Young). And J.J. Hickson bolted Raleigh after “leading” the pack to a 4-12 season in 2007-08. When studs like that come to teams that lack star power, they often are one-and-done and can hurt team development, having to replace someone who was there just a few months. That said, it would still be cool to have an elite talent. Here is hoping we can get a big fish in our pond.

This post was written by:

- who has written 1284 posts on Tech Hoops.

Niemo is a member of the VT Class of '98. While not a professional journalist by any stretch, Niemo analyzes and breaks down every minute of Hokie hoop action. He also researches topics of interest such as Hokie recruits, program revenue, statistical data on the team, previews VT opponents, and discusses his favorite bourbons/Scotches. In addition to his passion for Hokie hoops, Niemo has attended 126 straight VT football home games (every game since '94), eclipsing the 100 mark in September of '09 and recently attended his 20th consecutive VT/uva game. During the final home basketball game of his senior year, he was brought onto the court and was awarded 2 passes to the Atlantic 10 Basketball Tournament in Philly during a timeout for being a "Super Fan" during his time at VT. The Hokie Bird made the award on behalf of Athletic Director Jim Weaver. Niemo was known to be in the front row of every home game with his familiar red afro hairdo.

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