I will not define culture change or perceived culture change but, like Euclid, let's take these as known. Now, I just wanted to make a small note on the perception of culture change in its relation to recruiting.
I'm in the beginner level of looking at these sort of things having followed recruiting only for a couple seasons (ie shortly after discovering BN). I like to stare at the Scout rankings and what schools kids are being recruited by, Ooooh and Ahhh at the number of stars by their names, etc... Check out Scout's list of players according to their ranking, here.
Now, NSD is a few months away so many players have yet to commit to a school and the best players have huge offer lists from impressive schools. Here are some quick observations:
- No top 100 recruits have committed to UCLA at this time
- 63 recruits among the top 100 have already committed elsewhere
- By virtue of the first two bullets, 19 out of 37 recruits have UCLA as a School of Interest, or just over 50%
The first bullet doesn't faze me yet since Mora and Co. seem to start slow but finish strong (with the limited data points that we have). The second bullet point, with few exceptions, appears to be a recruiting practice that some traditional powers employ, namely, filling out their classes early (as far as I can tell).
What I find interesting is the third bullet point, and the basis of this short note. In previous years, it seemed that we would never be considered by top 100 recruits and or only only show up on one or two kids with seemingly uncountable schools listed (read: we wouldn't be in serious consideration). So, go back and scroll down the top 100 again. To me, 19 feels like a big number in this context. Sure, we might not get many (any?) of these to commit to the Bruins, but the fact that our lovely blue UCLA symbol pops up at over 50% of the undecided prospects points to UCLA being perceived in a positive manner. I think this is a data point, a small data point, of perceived culture change.
So, what do you folks think?