Saban not a fan of recruiting rankings, hype surrounding prospects

Saban and staff don't buy into recruiting hype.
Matthew Emmons/Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

According to Nick Saban, he couldn’t even tell you how many four and five-star recruits he has on his roster, his staff doesn’t pay attention to the recruiting rankings. 

“The rankings mean nothing to us,” Saban said during the latest SEC teleconference. “We try to evaluate players based on how they fit the criteria for what we’re looking for at certain positions. What kind of people they are. What kind of students they are, and all that kinda stuff. I just don’t know how accurate that information is sometimes, in terms of how you rate guys.”

Alabama’s coach went on to blame the rankings for giving young players a sense of entitlement and unwillingness to work to improve their craft at the college level. 

“I do think that all the media attention (recruits) get nowadays compared to years past, you know, creates an expectation for the player, which probably is a little bit unfair,” Saban said.

“You’d like the guy to come in and focus on developing. To improve and be a better player and try to be a good college football player. But sometimes the expectation is so great that they feel a lot of pressure to get results. They’re more worried about playing time than they are developing.

“It affects their ability to improve, and that’s something that we try to insulate them from, to some degree, by trying to focus with them on what they need to do to get better and be a good player at this level.”

Saban makes a good point, as transfers appear to be on the rise across the nation and depth – especially at quarterback – is difficult to achieve due to players leaving before earning a shot to play. 

Considering how many elite rated prospect Alabama signs on an annual basis, if it’s true that Saban and his staff don’t study recruiting rankings, it’s clear the recruiting experts are inflating prospect’s value based on being recruited by the Tide. 

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