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College Fotball Recruiting: USC Near The Top, UCLA Making Strides

The wacky world of college football recruiting is a difficult one to measure, especially before any of these kids have stepped foot on a college football field. However, Bud Elliott at SB Nation took a composite look at recruiting rankings from four different sources and combined them into one ranking, based on the percentage of recruits rated four stars or higher.

The USC Trojans came in as the fourth-ranked class with 75% of their incoming recruits rated as four stars or higher. The problem though for USC is with their scholarship restrictions the next two years the sheer volume of players is down. The Trojans have either seven or eight four-star recruits among their 10 commitments. By comparison, the Texas Longhorns have 76% of their recruits at four stars or higher in a five-star system, but they have 21 incoming players, giving them twice as many four-star recruits as the Trojans.

Across town in Westwood, new head coach Jim Mora and his staff have been hitting the recruiting trail hard, landing five-star defensive lineman Ellis McCarthy among others. The UCLA Bruins' recruiting class is rated 32nd, with between four and six of their 26 incoming players rated four stars or higher.

As Elliott noted, the rankings are important. "The facts have shown that recruits rated as five stars are much more likely to be top players than the recruits rated as four stars, and so on," Elliott wrote. "The stars-don't-matter argument is for holdouts in the face of the mountain of data compiled on the subject."

For more news on local college football, be sure to read Conquest Chronicles and Bruins Nation.