Whether it’s Nick Saban or Butch Jones, college football coaches usually say recruiting rankings don’t matter.
And then there’s P.J. Fleck at Minnesota.
The Golden Gophers’ new boss gave his early recruiting efforts some intense promotion — even though it’s more than eight months before National Signing Day — in a “State of the Program” video produced by the athletic department.
“We have 13 total commitments right now for the 2018 class, which puts us in the top 10 in the country in terms of number of commitments and also the top 12 in the country in terms of all the rankings out there, which we’re very, very proud of,” he said.
He referenced the “‘Row The Boat’ culture” and said the number of commitments and the ranking “show Minnesota is becoming this national brand in just the four short months that we’ve been here.”
For what it’s worth, Minnesota is indeed placed highly in most recruiting rankings, although Fleck seems to be a few days behind the times in the 247Sports rankings. They now list Minnesota at No. 13, dropping the Big Ten school one spot after a solid week for Oregon on the recruiting trail.
That’s a significant improvement from Minnesota’s recent 247Sports class rankings (58th in 2017, 46th in 2016, 63rd in 2015) — but it’s May. For instance, Alabama has just three commitments and is ranked 48th. It’s a good bet the Tide finishes ahead of Minnesota when the final rankings are released.
The “Row the Boat” culture hasn’t yet brought Minnesota any elite national prospects, though. All 13 commitments are listed as three-star prospects by 247Sports.
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