In case you, the crazed college football and Big Ten fan missed it – yesterday was National Signing Day. As such Urban Meyer and Ohio State did what they always have and probably always will do…. Haul in a crap ton of high level recruits and be one of the nation's top ranked classes. Ohio State was either 1st or 2nd nationally depending on your choice of the recruiting services. Michigan was right there with them, ranking in the Top 5 as well.
No other Big Ten team ranked in the Top 10 yesterday and apparently that has led Urban Meyer to be all sorts of hacked off at his fellow B1G coaches. Basically telling them – Y'all SUCK!
Urban Meyer tells 97.1 The Fan he will address the poor recruiting in the B1G directly with those coaches at the upcoming coaches meeting.
— jbook (@jbook37) February 7, 2013
Yep, so Urban Meyer is the self appointed King of the Big Ten. Hi, Urban – have you met Jim Delany? Pretty sure that man trumps you in the hierarchy of the Big Ten… Just saying.
Never mind the fact that at my last count he ranks below Kirk Ferentiz, Bo Pelini, Pat Fitzgerald, Mark D'Antonio, Jerry Kill, Kevin Wilson, and Brady Hoke on the totem pole of the conference coaching tenure list.
Never mind the fact that there is a simple numbers game going on in terms of where recruits live, what programs are trying to recruit for in terms of fits in a program, or the general fact that almost every Big Ten coach is new (3 years or less experience for 8 of the 12 coaches). Hell, King Urban doesn't even get a seat at the big boys table at the conference meetings because he's been in the league for exactly how long? One full season…. Shut up and win a conference title.
Lets be clear OSU's goal is not to win the B1G, but to win a National Title. Meyer came here to hold up a CrystalBall not to make friends.
— jbook (@jbook37) February 7, 2013
If Urban Meyer thinks he can get to a national championship without winning a Big Ten championship he's more delusional than his statement to 97.1FM made him seem in the first place. Unless you are 2nd place in the either division of the SEC - you have ZERO, and we mean ZERO chance of making the national championship game right now and for the foreseeable future - and by foreseeable future we mean, like forever.
Not to mention the fact that, oh I don't know - the new playoff system will likely require you to be a conference champion to get into the mix anyway.... Ya, sure, no don't worry about the Big Ten championship - it's only your ticket to the National Championship you crave so much.
But, back to the rankings.... Never mind the fact that all of those star rating and awesome class rankings mean jack and squat when you get out on the field of play. If that were the case then I ask King Urban one question. How the hell did Wisconsin win back-to-back-to-back Big Ten championships the past three years?
I'm guessing he'll come at me with the whole "Rich Rod sunk Michigan & we weren't eligible" argument as if that's the only reason why. Yes, recruiting is important, but so is recruiting the right players to your class. That's what got Michigan and OSU into the places they are now digging out of in the first place.
Clearly King Urban has a fetish with being just like the SEC. Call me crazy, but I don't want to be anywhere near that thing when the house of cards that is the SEC comes down. Let's not forget, even one of their former players admitted their players are being paid $$$$.
I have a humble suggestion for King Urban - why don't you worry about taking that No. 1 or 2 ranked recruiting class and turn it into a winner of the Big Ten before you go spouting off about recruiting.
Yes, a rising tide lifts all boats - but you can't have a rising tide if you aren't producing on the field either and ultimately isn't that where it matters most?
Certainly recruiting and winning don't and never have gone hand in hand with winning. Don't believe me? For all the gusto and bravado that is USC, Texas, and Clemson on the recruiting trail, what do they have to show for it?
Let's see Texas hasn't lit the world on fire - turning in a Top 3 class in 2010 and producing records of 5-7, 8-5, and 9-4 since - not exactly stellar results from a class that was so highly thought of and so full of all those 5 star Texas players everyone drools over every rerouting cycle.
USC is paying for it's recruiting and player violation sins and seemingly can't keep players in the fold and went from preseason No. 1 to losing the Sun Bowl this year - all with highly touted classes for as long as we can remember.
Clemson has stepped up it's recruiting game under Dabo Sweeney, yet it can't jump over the hurdle that is FSU and win an ACC championship, let alone a national title either.
Wait, you mean to tell me you actually have to coach up a class, too... Now, that's not to say Urban Meyer doesn't know that, he clearly does. However, he seems to also be ignorant of the fact that teams in the Big Ten have their identities, know who they are and recruit to fit those identities. It's not about landing a trillion 5 star recruits because they want to keep up with the Joneses. That has never been and will never be the Big Ten.
Is there room for improvement in some aspects of what the Big Ten does? Sure, but I highly doubt that Mark Dantonio, Gary Andersen, Kevin Wilson, or Pat Fitzgerald need to be told where the hotbeds of recruiting are. These guys aren't stupid.
Rankings may be the end all, be all down south where the nuclear arms race that are facilities, assistant coaches salaries, and recruiting budgets (a.k.a. booster money) are on seemingly endless supply. However, King Urban, things are a bit different up here in Big Ten country. Nebraska, Wisconsin, and Michigan State's successes over the past four years can and do tell you where you can stick your rankings.
Up here it's about knowing who you are, what you're about and getting players that fit in. What's the difference if a Chris Borland came in ranked a 3 star prospect? He's a 1st team all-B1G linebacker and considered one of the elite in the country heading into 2013. What's the difference if Kain Colter comes in ranked a 3 star prospect and the 52nd best quarterback in his class - is he a 3 star player now? Is he the 52nd best QB in the country, let alone his class?
Instead both had coaches who found them to be of value to the culture and systems they are running and that has set them up for success. That's the real key in recruiting - anyone will tell you that.
Hell, even last night you could hear Allen Trieu (Scout.com Midwest Recruiting analyst) and Steve Wiltfong (247sports national writer) give you the low down on what Big Ten recruiting is like (at the 30min mark) - and hint... It's not about the rankings!
Besides, if you're a head coach obsessing over what everyone else is doing around you on National Signing Day, perhaps your priorities are a bit out of whack? Don't you have better things to worry about - you know like turning your class into winners on the football field.
If I'm a head coach and King Urban gets up to speak and lecture me on what the Big Ten needs to do... Well, first thing I'm doing is giving him a nice boot to the backside and then walking out. No one in that room needs anyone else telling them what they should be doing for their own teams. That's simply condescending and ridiculously egotistical to put it mildly.
If you've got advice on a tactical approach or maybe on how to sell the conference a different way then we've all done before that's different - but to come out and say what you said today to the rest of the coaching fraternity - well, perhaps they should all have their own tea party... Last time I checked we don't take to kindly to Kings over here - so take your Kingly act and kick rocks.... We were fine before you and we'll continue to be fine after you. Long live the Big Ten!