Skull Session: Buckeyes Among the Best at Producing NFL Talent, A One-Time Transfer Waiver is On Hold, and Urban Meyer Relives 2016 Edition of The Game

By Kevin Harrish on May 1, 2020 at 4:59 am
Brian Hartline has stuff on his hands.

You've nearly made it to the weekend (as if those mean anything anymore).

Song of the Day: "Body Moves" by DNCE

Word of the Day: Sumptuous.

 DEVELOPED HERE. Anyone with at least some cognitive function could probably tell you that Ohio State has been elite at developing NFL talent the past few years, but 247Sports has just worked out a way to quantify it.

As we exit the 2020 NFL Draft, this is an ideal time to examine development. 247Sports’ annual list of 32 five-star recruits mirrors the first round of the NFL Draft, which makes the Top247 a great place to start. Top247 players are consider the best prospects in their class. Under the right circumstances – health, a good work ethic, character and high-level coaching – talents of that level generally thrive.

To provide a concrete measure of developmental prowess, 247Sports dove into Top247 data to see how top programs have cultivated their four and five-star talent. The examination covered a five-year period between the 2011 and 2015 classes, covering the full scope of a player’s potential eligibility – there are a few sixth-year holdouts remaining from the 2015 class that didn't factor into the data set. 

To fairly access a successful development, 247Sports created a “Development Rating.”

It's a measure that takes into account the total number of Top247 prospects a program signed along with where/if those players were drafted (3 points for 1st rounders, 2 points for 2nd-3rd, 1 for 4th-7th), dividing the total number of prospects by the point total to create the rating. This removes any advantage created by a program’s ability to recruit an overwhelming number of Top247 players. It also rewards programs that produce more first- and second-day picks, removing a "quantity over quality" argument. We also limited this list to teams that recruited at least 10 Top247 players from 2011 to 2015. 

It's an Urban Meyer-approved methodology (and I'm sure he ain't exactly pissed about the results, either).

Obviously, the biggest shortcoming with this system is that it doesn't reward teams for producing three-star talent into NFL Draft prospects, which is undeniably more impressive than pumping four and five-star talent to The Leauge.

But that's okay, because someone else already looked at that data earlier this week, and it turns out that Ohio State turns more three-star players into NFL Draft picks than any other program, despite signing far fewer three-star prospects in the first place. Meanwhile, Alabama ain't even in the top-10 on that list.

Basically, if you want to go to the NFL, come to Ohio State.

 NOT SO FAST! It's been reported and assumed that a one-time transfer waiver was expected to pass some time this offseason and go into effect immediately, but it looks like we may need to pump the brakes on that one.

A complete about-face on an extremely player-first rule change that overwhelmingly aligned with public opinion – now *that* is the NCAA I know. Great to see they didn't forget who they were after yesterday's decision.

 SHOULD THEY STAY OR SHOULD THEY GO? Just so we're clear, there is no mystery here. Kaleb Wesson and Alonzo Gaffney are absolutely gone and CJ Walker is absolutely coming back to Ohio State.

There are no decisions to sway, but that doesn't make NBA Scouts assessments any less interesting, and after talking to said scouts, Jeff Goodman has both Wesson and Gaffney squarely in the "They Say They’re Ready, But Leaving School Would Be a Mistake" category.

Alonzo Gaffney, 6-9, 200, PF, Fr., Ohio State | He barely got off the bench at Ohio State last season, averaging 6.8 minutes per game. He’s long and looks the part, but his stock couldn’t be any lower.

“This is one of the worst decisions of anyone. He needs to transfer.” – NBA executive


Kaleb Wesson, 6-9, 270, PF, Jr., Ohio State | “Mid to late second or undrafted. His body improved last year. Go back and get even better at guarding more athletic guys and also shooting from the perimeter.” – NBA executive

There's a solid chance neither of these players ever make it in the NBA, but hey, playing overseas is lucrative as hell compared to what the average person does with their lives. And you could always win a couple hundred thousand on the side during the summer, like Carmen's Crew.

I'll never hate on a guy for deciding getting paid six figures to play basketball in Italy is better than another year of walking to class in the snow for free.

 RELIVING IT ALL. Urban Meyer doesn't watch home videos, he watches old game tape. And for him, last night's viewing of the 2016 edition of The Game was like watching grainy footage of a favorite child perform in a talent show.

He's going to watch the replay of that game 1,000 times before he dies – if the rewatch itself doesn't kill him first.

 SOFT TACO. Hours before the replay of his final rivalry game at Michigan, we were gifted with an absolutely glorious nickname for Taco Charlton.

I live my life relatively free from regrets, but it's going to haunt me until the day I die that this nickname did not come about during his time at Michigan.

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