I couldn't just stop at three,I guess, but don't get too hyped up. This is a VERY fast rundown of the last three classes, but there's still a few interesting things to note despite many of these players having multiple chapters left in their college careers.
With TEN 4-star signees, the 2011 class looked like it had the potential to be much more than the recruiting services gave it credit for, but transfers & busts have likely dropped its overall value considerably. The 2012 class was small, but it is playing out early as Pelini's finest - note the number of freshmen and redshirt freshmen who have already seen significant time on the field. 2013 appears to have much potential at the top but the great majority redshirted, so they're basically a work in progress.
2011 (#25 Rivals, unranked ESPN)
Ameer Abdullah - ***- elite back, leadership, fumbleitis - ****1/2?
Taariq Allen - *** - injury issues, otherwise primed for pt - NR
Mauro Bondi - ** - lost out to Smith, could be behind Brown -*
Joseph Carter - *** -senior in '12, JC transfer, no starts, played as backup - **
Daniel Davie - *** - special teams so far, still potential to play? - NR
Aaron Green - **** - spot play as frosh, transferred to TCU - *1/2
Charles Jackson - **** - mostly special teams, on depth charts - NR
Ryan Klachko - **** - transferred to Illinois - *
Tyler Moore - **** - Freshman All-B1G, 4 starts, transferred to Fla. - *1/2
Givens Mordi Price - *** - looks to see increased PT - NR
Todd Peat Jr. - **** - transferred, ended up at E. Arizona JC - *
Max Pirman - *** - switched to TE, has yet to play, younger players ahead on depth chart - *
Ryne Reeves - **** - looks see increased PT - NR
David Santos - **** - Jr to be, 11 starts as soph - NR
Daimion Stafford - **** - All-B1G, JC transfer - ****
Bubba Starling - **** - batting avg low so far but showing 5-category skills...wait. Shit. - *
Zach Sterup - **** - looks see increased PT, "illegal procedure - 5 yards!" - NR
David Sutton - ** - yet to see depth chart or field, younger players have moved in front - *
Jamal Turner - **** - switched to WR, regular action, injured 2nd half of 2013 - NR
Kevin Williams - *** - injury issues 2 of 3 years - NR
Santos appeared to hit his groove once Rose moved to the Mike.
- Abdullah & Stafford to a degree are the established jewels, Santos may play out that way as well.
- 7-8 busts, 3-4 of them 4-star recruits (iffy calling Moore total bust due to frosh playing time/starts)
- Including Bondi as a bust as well, have to believe staff doesn't have faith when they dole out another scholly to kicker when Bondi has 2 years left
- Tyler Moore becomes first critical transfer loss as he starts for Florida
- 9 players with potential for improvement and/or impact
- Without a huge leap from a few guys, the number of 4-star recruits who pan out to level will be 2/10 by my count
2012 (#15 Rivals, #17 ESPN)
Jared Afalava - *** - spot play as redshirt freshman, 2 starts, left team - *1/2
Leroy Alexander - *** - significant play as RS frosh - NR
Zaire Anderson - **** - played 12 games as JR, 5 starts, JC xfer, 1 more year for medical RS - NR
Tommy Armstrong - *** - multiple starts as RS frosh due to Martinez injury - NR
Thomas Brown - *** - kicked off team after RS season - *
Sam Cotton - *** - played in 10 games, 1 start as RS Frosh - NR
Imani Cross - *** - played in every game 1st two seasons - NR
Aaron Curry - *** - 8 starts as soph - NR
Greg McMullen - **** - began to see field regularly as RS frosh - NR
Alonzo Moore - **** - regular PT with 2 starts as RS frosh - NR
Avery Moss - *** - Excellent RS frosh season, legal issues, if returns, not until 2015 - **
Michael Rose - Freshman All-B1G, broke Barrett Ruud frosh record for tackles - NR
Mohammed Seisay - **** - JC xfer, significant playing time, 2 starts - **1/2
Paul Thurston - **** - no PT as RS frosh - NR
Vincent Valentine - *** - 6 starts as RS frosh, successful transition from Final Fantasy series - NR
Jordan Westerkamp - **** - Freshman All B1G, Northwestern baby!!, caught punts - NR
Corey Whitaker - *** - no PT as RS frosh - NR
Westerkamp made the The Catch II. Will he continue to earn more looks?
- 11/17 players in this class saw significant time as frosh or RS frosh. Fairly impressive.
- Brown, Afalava looking like only busts thus far, can't place that tag on Moss after his 2013 season despite leaving
- Despite small size, this class is shaping up to easily be Pelini's best
- Expect more LB's to transfer after spring and/or 2014 season. Too much talent at the position in last two classes. (Santos, Rose, Banderas, Gerry, Love, Newby)
2013 (#17 Rivals, #23 ESPN)
Josh Banderas - **** - 24/7 True Freshman All-American, Frosh B1G HM - NR
Cethan Carter - *** - 6 starts as true frosh - NR
Maliek Collins - *** - significant PT, 1 start as true frosh - NR
Tre'vell Dixon - *** - academic issues, supposedly went JC -*
Matt Finnin - *** - saw action in 4 games as frosh - NR
Nathan Gerry - *** - Freshman All-B1G, 3 starts - NR
Kevin Gladney - *** - RS - NR
Randy Gregory - **** - All B1G, CFN Soph Defensive POY, JC transfer - NR
Zach Hannon - *** - RS - NR
Greg Hart - *** - RS - NR
Dwayne Johnson - *** - FINALLY! THE ROCK'S! REDSHIRT SEASON! IS OH-VER! - NR
Boaz Joseph - *** - RS - NR
David Kneval - *** - RS - NR
Chongo Kondolo - *** - RS - NR
Courtney Love - *** - RS - NR
Drake Martinez - *** - RS - NR
Kevin Maurice - *** - RS - NR
Gabriel Miller - ** - our 1st long-snapper scholly , played every game, how the hell do you rate a long snapper? - NR
Dimarya Mixon - *** - academic issues, sat out, set to sign with Tennessee - *
A.J. Natter - *** - RS - NR
Marcus Newby - **** - RS - NR
Terrell Newby - **** - 54 carries, played in 13 games as frosh - NR
Johnny Stanton - *** - RS - NR
Ernest Suttles - *** - kicked off team summer 2013 - *
Adam Taylor - **** - RS - NR
A sight that became more & more familiar for opposing QB's.
- 4 saw significant playing time as true freshmen. Add in Gregory and the long snapper as well as members of this class on the field.
- 3 players never made it to campus - 2 academic, one kicked off. Like early 90's Dr.Tom, does that mean Bo is easing up on chiefly recruiting boy scouts on the honor roll? Or is it just a blip?
- I tried to stay away from practice/scout team chatter about the 2013 redshirts; if they sat out last year, I just noted & moved down.