Paul Finebaumâ€™s Saturday column provided details about Tom Luginbillâ€™s recruiting analysis, and why the ESPN analyst ranked the Tideâ€™s class #3 when everyone else placed the Tide at the top.
“I don’t want to get into an ‘I told you so’ type of situation,” Luginbill said. “In our opinion, what you do in February with our rankings, you have to take that into consideration in August. If they don’t show up in August, they’re not part of it. This was one of the things we were very concerned about. If the guys aren’t there in the end, you can’t count them in the end.
“When we talked about this back in February, we knew there was going to be some of this. We didn’t feel comfortable talking about academic issues unless we knew it for a fact. It’s a very sensitive issue; we stayed away but we knew it was part of it privately. It explains where we were coming from.”
What a load of…manure.
Every team in the SEC experiences attrition in a signing class due to players failing to qualify, or backing out of playing football. But Luginbill wants us to believe this is a major issue confined only to Alabama.
Luginbill also wants us to believe the players who arenâ€™t going to be on the Tideâ€™s squad are somehow major parts of the class.
But according to Luginbillâ€™s own rankings, players like Brandon Lewis (headed to JUCO) arenâ€™t graded near the top of the class. In fact, all of the top players in the class are headed to Tuscaloosaâ€”just look at the ESPN 150â€™s. Arenâ€™t they supposed to the be the centerpiece of the class?
This is another reason Rivals.com and Scout.com are superior to Luginbill and ESPN. They calculate some attrition in their complicated statistical analysis (Rivals only rates the class on the first 25 players.) Unlike ESPNâ€™s subjective and therefore biased ranking, Rivals provides a more impartial mathematical model.
Also, Finebaum throws in this comical line:
However, since Luginbill’s reputation is unimpeachable in most national circles and with a behemoth like ESPN on his side, some wonder if his rankings and recent comments take a tiny chink out of Saban’s armor.
Luginbill isnâ€™t respected in recruiting circles. All Finebaum has to do is listen to his own archives when the Rivals CEO came onto the Finebaum show. Shannon Terry of Rivals responded to Luginbillâ€™s allegations that sites like Rivals and Scout push an agenda to earn subscription dollars.
And now Luginbillâ€™s â€œcontentâ€ is being sold to subscribers too.