A Note on TTB Ratings

Tag: TTB ratings

31Mar 2012
Uncategorized 43 comments

A Note on TTB Ratings

Kyle Kalis is my top-rated recruited from 2012, but not every recruit receives
such high praise.

Recently I have taken a lot of flak for the TTB Ratings (and player reviews) I’ve been giving.  I’m a big boy and can handle the criticism; I expected criticism when I created the ratings.  However, I have to admit that some of the comments are unfounded and unrealistic.  Many of the complaints have centered around the fact that the coaches like the kids, so why can’t I just shut up and enjoy the ride?  Well . . . because coaches are wrong.  And yes, that means I can be wrong, too.  But these are my opinions, not anyone else’s.  And if my predictions are wrong, you can always point to a commitment post or a TTB Rating and say “Told ya so!”

Looking from a historical perspective, though, I think some people need to realize that a large number of these kids are bound to fail at football.  It’s just the nature of the business.  Some high-profile recruits bomb.  Some low-profile recruits turn into stars.  And vice versa.

Looking at the bottom rung of my TTB Ratings, it says “0-39: Below average backup or special teams contributor.”  Keep in mind that the TTB Ratings are trying to predict success at
Michigan, not necessarily overall talent.  For example, a guy who I
predict might get buried on the bench at Michigan could go to Kent State
and play very well.  From 2002-2008, here’s a list of all or most of the players who would fit that 0-39 category (essentially, these are complete non-contributors for various reasons): Tom Berishaj, Mike Kolodziej, Quinton McCoy, Kevin Murphy, Will Paul, Jim Presley, Clayton Richard, Pat Sharrow, Jeff Zuttah, Roger Allison, Keston Cheathem, Jeremy Ciulla, Grant DeBenedictis, Brett Gallimore, Marques Walton, Jason Forcier, Brandon Logan, Chris McLaurin, Chris Richards, Justin Schifano, Cory Zirbel, David Cone, Jason Kates, Cobrani Mixon, Quintin Patilla, Quintin Woods, Zion Babb, Artis Chambers, Vince Helmuth, Isaiah Bell, Taylor Hill, Dann O’Neill, Kurt Wermers, and Marcus Witherspoon. 

In a span of seven years, that’s 34 guys who were complete busts . . . an average of 4.9 per recruiting cycle.  I realize some of those guys’ careers ended early due to injury (Kolodziej, Sharrow, etc.), some transferred, and some got in trouble with the law . . . but some of them just couldn’t cut it.  Jason Forcier was buried on the bench here and got buried at Stanford.  Brandon Logan could never see the field despite playing on a depleted football team.  Cone was behind younger players and walk-ons for his entire career.  No matter how you slice it, there are bound to be flops.

Am I a soothsayer?  No.  I can’t predict the future.  All I can do is offer an educated opinion based on depth charts and what I see on film.  But I am 99% certain that some of these 4-stars will play like 5-stars, some 5-stars will play like 3-stars, and some 3-stars will become studs.  Nobody knows for sure which players they will be, but we’re all bound to be wrong sometimes, and we’re all bound to be right sometimes.

The difference between this site and others – whether you like it or not – is that I will share who I think those booms and busts will be.  There are numerous recruiting sites out there that essentially say “I love this kid and think he will be great!” . . . and they say that about every recruit.  That’s fine if they want to do that, but I’m not going to put stock in the opinion of any “evaluator” who thinks 99% of these kids are going to be studs.  Imagine if you went to a doctor for your back pain and he said, “Surgery is great, acupuncture is great, chiropractors are great, exercise is great, and meditation is great!  They’re all great!”  Or imagine if you went to a financial analyst who wanted you to put your money into every stock out there.  Well, surgery might mess up your back for life, and putting all your money into Groupon might sink your life savings.  Just like you would want a doctor or financial planner to steer you in the right direction, I hope I can steer Michigan fans in the right direction.

I will never root for a Michigan player to fail.  These kids play for Michigan, my alma mater.  I would love for every kid who walks onto the field to be an All-American and get drafted in the first round.  But that’s not a realistic expectation, and realistic fans ought to be able to see that.  If my approach to recruiting upsets you, I encourage you to read another website.  That’s not because I don’t want traffic or that I don’t value others’ opinions.  I simply think you’ll be happier elsewhere . . . and I know I’m unlikely to change.  I welcome other fans’ opinions, but getting angry about my ratings is a waste of everyone’s time.

29Feb 2012
Uncategorized 6 comments

2013 TTB Ratings coming soon!

I’ve been receiving a lot of questions about the TTB Ratings for the class of 2013.  They should be posted either Thursday or Friday, depending on how much time I have this afternoon.  It’s been a busy week and I haven’t had much time to write lately.  I’m glad people are excited to see them, so I’ll get them up as soon as they’re completed.

26Jan 2012
Uncategorized 2 comments

TTB Ratings: Reason Behind the Ratings

Farmington Hills (MI) Harrison DE Mario Ojemudia made a significant
jump in the new TTB ratings

Yesterday I posted the new TTB Ratings for Michigan’s class of 2012 (which I reserve the right to change until after Michigan’s recruiting class is completed), and obviously, there were some significant changes for a few players.  A couple kids have moved up or down a few points, but today I’ll try to explain the reasons behind the biggest movers.

Ondre Pipkins – NT – Kansas City (MO) Park Hill
Pipkins moved up from an 82 to a 90.  I was impressed with Pipkins’ performance in the Army All-American Bowl.  He looked to me to be a little bit out of shape, but I guess 330-pound defensive tackles rarely look like they’re in shape.  However, when he had the gas to go 100%, he was a terror.  He also showed good athleticism in chasing down quarterback Chad Voytik and wide receiver Stefon Diggs, causing a fumble against the latter.  Pipkins dominated the high school competition in Kansas City, but doing it against elite competition suggests that he’ll be able to have success in the Big Ten, too.

Joe Bolden – MIKE – Cincinnati (OH) Colerain
Bolden moved up from a 77 to an 88.  I was slightly disappointed that Bolden couldn’t bring down a few more ballcarriers in the Under Armour All-American Game, but he was the week’s best tackler in practice and he was very good at diagnosing plays.  I’ve always liked his decisiveness and intelligence, but he showed throughout the season and the all-star game that he has the speed and athleticism to be a very good Big Ten linebacker.  He needs to add weight and he would benefit from a redshirt year so he can improve his upper body strength.

Jehu Chesson – WR – St. Louis (MO) Ladue Horton Watkins
Chesson moved up from a 77 to an 87.  As I consider the future of Michigan’s offense under Brady Hoke and Al Borges, I realize the value of a jump-ball guy like Chesson.  He’s excellent at high-pointing the ball and catching it with his hands, and that bodes well for his future for Michigan.  He looks like an Adrian Arrington clone, and without another downfield threat on the squad, he could be that guy who can stretch the field as soon as next season.

Mario Ojemudia – WDE – Farmington Hills (MI) Harrison
Ojemudia moved up from a 67 to a 78.  Ojemudia played defensive end/outside linebacker in the Marine game, and his performance wasn’t very impressive . . . but since he mostly played defensive tackle in high school, I’m going to give him a little bit of a pass.  One of his strengths is getting off the ball quickly, and without the ball right under his nose, his reaction time was affected negatively.  However, his senior highlight film shows a guy who can use his hands to get off blocks, and he reminds me of the freshman version of Frank Clark.  Those two are very similar players, and Ojemudia looks like he’ll be able to fill that weakside end position nicely.

Blake Bars – C – Nashville (TN) Montgomery Bell
Bars dropped from a 71 to a 62.  I wasn’t extremely high on Bars to begin with, because he seems a little slow-footed and doesn’t seem like a great athlete.  He looks like more of a backup and maybe a late-career starter as a tackle, but now that Caleb Stacey has decommitted in favor of Cincinnati, that might require the 6’5″ Bars to play center.  Since he lacks experience at the position and because of his lack of quickness, I think he might struggle inside.

Jeremy Clark – FS – Madisonville (KY) North Hopkins
Clark moved up from a 49 to a 59.  When I first heard about Clark and saw film on him, I thought he might be a big fish in a small pond.  But the more film I saw of him, the more I think he can make an impact at the next level.  He’s a lanky kid who gets by on athleticism, so I think college is going to be a bit of a wake-up call for him.  He probably won’t be the type who comes in and lights the world on fire.  He’ll have to improve his pursuit angles and he’ll have to become a more fundamental tackler, but his height (6’4″) and flat-out speed should provide a nice athlete on the back end to work with for four or five years down the road.

Kaleb Ringer – WILL – Clayton (OH) Northmont
Ringer dropped from a 64 to a 39.  As you might be able to tell from his original rating of 64, I wasn’t too high on Ringer from the start.  However, the more that I have seen and heard of Ringer, the more I’m concerned about him remaining with the program.  I do think he has the physical talent to be a backup, but let’s face it – guys from every recruiting class get lost in the shuffle, become career backups, transfer, etc.  My gut feeling on Ringer is that he’ll be one of those guys, especially with all the other talent at linebacker in the 2012 class.

25Jan 2012
Uncategorized 12 comments

TTB Ratings Update: January 25, 2012

Kyle Kalis is Michigan’s top-rated recruit, according to me.

Within the last several months, I instituted a “TTB Rating” system that is somewhat unique to the site but also broader than the recruiting sites’ ratings and more specific to Michigan.  

Below you’ll find updated ratings for each player.  The ratings with a strikethrough are prior, outdated ratings.

Kyle Kalis – OG – Lakewood (OH) St. Edward’s: 95 95
James Ross – WILL – Orchard Lake (MI) St. Mary’s: 92 94
Ondre Pipkins – NT – Kansas City (MO) Park Hill: 82 90
Joe Bolden – MIKE – Cincinnati (OH) Colerain: 77 88
Jarrod Wilson – FS – Akron (OH) Buchtel: 89 88
Jehu Chesson – WR – St. Louis (MO) Ladue Horton Watkins: 77 87
Erik Magnuson – OT – Carlsbad (CA) La Costa Canyon: 87 87
Tom Strobel – SDE – Mentor (OH) Mentor: 79 85
Royce Jenkins-Stone – MIKE – Detroit (MI) Cass Tech: 86 84
Terry Richardson – CB – Detroit (MI) Cass Tech: (85) 80
Mario Ojemudia – WDE – Farmington Hills (MI) Harrison: 67 78
Amara Darboh – WR – West Des Moines (IA) Dowling Catholic: 80 77
Devin Funchess – TE – Farmington Hills (MI) Harrison: 75 75
Chris Wormley – SDE – Toledo (OH) Whitmer: 73 73
Ben Braden – OT – Rockford (MI) Rockford: 65 71
Matt Godin – SDE – Novi (MI) Catholic Central: 65 70
A.J. Williams – TE – Cincinnati (OH) Sycamore: Inc. 69
Sione Houma – FB – Salt Lake City (UT) Highland: 69 66
Drake Johnson – RB – Ann Arbor (MI) Pioneer: 73 65
Allen Gant – SS – Sylvania (OH) Southview: 59 63
Blake Bars – C – Nashville (TN) Montgomery Bell: 71 62
Jeremy Clark – FS – Madisonville (KY) North Hopkins: 49 59
Kaleb Ringer – WILL – Clayton (OH) Northmont: 64 39