Romar’s Recruiting Analysis

facebooktwitterreddit

by Griffin Bennett, Staff Writer

There’s been a lot of recruiting talk this year about Romar’s guard-heavy recruiting class that we all think he is building this year. It seems that every year Romar has recruits more guards than forwards, or at least better guards than forwards. I decided to get into the numbers and try and see, once and for all, if Romar truly is in love with his guards. I took a look at his recruiting numbers since he joined UW in 2002. I analyzed the rankings of his recruits (according to Scout.com) and the amount of each position recruited. Also, I looked at if the remaining structure of the team impacted what position Romar recruited. i.e. There are only four forwards on the roster for next year, so Romar signed 3 forwards. Let me debunk or support some of the common myths surround Romar’s recruiting strategy.
 
First of all, let me lay down some of my qualifications:
The 2002 recruiting class of Brandon Roy, Nate Robinson, and Bobby Jones are not counted on Romar’s record because former coach Bob Bender was highly involved in that class
Players such as Martell Webster and Charles Garcia are included on this list because I am trying to analyze Romar’s recruiting strategy and these players were highly involved in that aspect, regardless of whether they played for UW or not.
For the sake of argument, I am leaving out centers. Coach Romar has recruited 5 centers in 8 years and only Hawes and N’Diaye have been ranked above 2 star recruits. It also allows me to compare the two guard positions to the two forward positions.
 
Myth #1: Romar recruits more guards than forward.
 
            Since 2003, Romar has signed 12 guards. On the other hand, Romar has signed 14 forwards since 2003. While many of us, including me, feel as if Romar always has a loaded backcourt, the numbers seem to show that Romar is at least trying to sign a very balanced team. In the first half of his tenure at UW (2003-2006) he signed only four guards while signing seven forwards. During his second half (2007-2010) he has signed a more even seven guards to seven forwards. What does this mean? Nothing really. I was most shocked to see that Romar has actually nabbed more forwards than guards but my gut reaction to that information leads my to the next myth…
 
Myth #2: Romar recruits better guards than forwards.
 
            Now this has to be true, right? Well, it kind of is true. Since 2003, Romar’s average guard recruit’s ranking has been 3.66 stars. His average forward recruit’s ranking has been 3.57 stars. Finally something looks about right.
These guard rankings, however, include the skewing ranking of Martell Webster’s 5 stars. If you were to remove Martell’s 5 stars and Garcia’s 3 stars, the average guard and forward rankings come out to 3.45 and 3.61 respectively.
Now what does this mean? Once again, it really means nothing. I was shocked again to read those numbers as it seems we have been guard heavy, forever. Maybe the answer lies in the next myth…
Myth #3: Romar has had more forward recruits become “busts” than guards.
 
            Of Romar’s 12 guard recruits, here is a list of the players who underperformed relative to their ranking: Harvey Perry (3), and the jury is out on Abdul Gaddy (5). That’s the list. I’m not including the transfers (Adrian Oliver and Elston Turner) because that has nothing to do with Romar’s eye for talent.
Of his 14 forward recruits, here is a list of the players who underperformed relative to their ranking: Artem Wallace (4) and maybe Joel Smith (4).
I would call this one a push, and this myth definitely doesn’t have any legs. Since it’s hard to have three star athletes become busts (10 of the 26 recruits were three star recruits), it leads to a very safe team. Well what if the opposite is true….?
 
Myth #4: Romar has had more guard recruits become “booms” than forwards.
 
            By “boom” I mean players who outperformed their original ranking. Of the 12 guard recruits under Romar, here is a list of these “boom” players: Tre Simmons (3), Isaiah Thomas (3), and you could argue Justin Dentmon (3) counts too.
In comparison, here is a list of the “boom” forward recruits: does Phil Nelson (3) count? Basically, there are none for the forwards. Finally, here is a myth that actually can be considered true. I think this says good things about Coach Romar that he has a great eye for talent, especially the guard position.
 
In Conclusion:
 
            As I looked at the numbers and compared them to the teams to the teams for which they played for, I can only come to one rock-solid conclusion: there is more to recruiting than just the numbers. As we know, Scout.com isn’t perfect with their rankings, nor is any other site or even coach out there.
There are so many things that go into compiling a recruiting class that I don’t think there will ever be a blueprint for Romar’s true recruiting strategy. Things like local recruits, national position depth, regional position depth, Romar’s long term recruiting efforts, team success, personal relationships, coaching reputation and program stability can all be factors in creating Romar’s recruiting classes.
Regarding the 2011 class, local players (all guards) are heavily influencing the direction in which it is headed. Players such as Hikeem Stewart, Tony Wroten, and Brett Kingma have been on Romar’s list for years and they just all happen to be guards. These are fluctuations that happen every year and can not be controlled. However, predicting them can be a true art form for coaches.
While 2011 may be guard-heavy, 2012 could be forward-heavy. The only true recruiting numbers that matter are the ones that those players put on the scoreboard.