National Signing Day is Wednesday, and to some college football fans that's like Christmas in February.
We decided to take a look at the past five drafts and examine where the first-rounders were ranked as recruits coming out of high school.
There were 160 first-rounders in that span, and 29 of them were rated as five-star prospects (18 percent) by Rivals.com as high school seniors. That's an impressive ratio, considering FBS schools sign about 2,500 football players each season. There generally are about 30 five-star prospects annually, meaning less than 1.5 percent of the players signed are five-star guys.
Generally, there are about 275 to 300 four-star prospects annually, which means the great bulk of players who sign with colleges each season -- about 85 percent -- are two- or three-star guys.
In the past five first rounds of the NFL draft, there also were 64 four-star prospects, 43 three-star prospects, 21 two-star prospects and three unranked prospects. The unranked prospects were Brandon Weeden, who graduated from high school before Rivals had a ranking system, then played five seasons of minor league baseball; Clay Matthews, who was a walk-on at USC; and Ziggy Ansah, who went to high school in Ghana and arrived at BYU as a possible track athlete.
Also worth noting: Nine of the 21 two-star prospects who became first-round picks signed with schools in Conference USA, the MAC, the Mountain West and the WAC -- which means that "big" schools missed on them, too. (One of those nine was J.J. Watt, who signed with Central Michigan before eventually transferring to Wisconsin.) Six more of the two stars played in the Big East or ACC, and none of them played in the Big Ten or SEC.
Here is a look at the players drafted in the past five first rounds. Some of them played different positions in high school, and those are noted. If a player was considered a national top-100 recruit, that is noted, too.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars: OT Luke Joeckel, Texas A&M
Particulars: 4-star OT in 2010 recruiting class (national top-40 player).
5. Detroit Lions: DE Ezekiel "Ziggy" Ansah, BYU
Particulars: Unranked; did not play high school football (arrived at BYU in 2008 as a track athlete from Ghana).
7. Arizona Cardinals: G Jonathan Cooper, North Carolina
Particulars: 3-star G in 2008 recruiting class.
12. Oakland Raiders: CB DJ Hayden, Houston
Particulars: 3-star S/CB in 2011 recruiting class (national top-50 junior college player).
16. Buffalo Bills: QB E.J. Manuel, Florida State
Particulars: 4-star QB in 2008 recruiting class (national top-50 player).
5. Jacksonville Jaguars: WR Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State
Particulars: 3-star WR in 2008 recruiting class.
31. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: RB Doug Martin, Boise State
Particulars: 2-star RB in 2007 recruiting class.
32. New York Giants: RB David Wilson, Virginia Tech
Particulars: 4-star RB in 2009 recruiting class (national top-40 player).
6. Atlanta Falcons: WR Julio Jones, Alabama
Particulars: 5-star WR in 2008 recruiting class (national top-five player).
8. Tennessee Titans: QB Jake Locker, Washington
Particulars: 4-star QB in 2006 recruiting class (national top-70 player).
21. Cleveland Browns: DT Phil Taylor, Baylor
Particulars: 4-star DT in 2006 recruiting class (signed with Penn State before transferring).
26. Kansas City Chiefs: WR Jonathan Baldwin, Pittsburgh
Particulars: 5-star WR in 2008 recruiting class (national top-30 player).
8. Oakland Raiders: LB Rolando McClain, Alabama
Particulars: 4-star LB in 2006 recruiting class (national top-40 player).
18. Pittsburgh Steelers: C Maurkice Pouncey, Florida
Particulars: 4-star G in 2007 recruiting class.
23. Green Bay Packers: OT Bryan Bulaga, Iowa
Particulars: 4-star OT in 2007 recruiting class (national top-70 player).
25. Denver Broncos: QB Tim Tebow, Florida
Particulars: 5-star QB in 2006 recruiting class (national top-25 player).
30. Detroit Lions: RB Jahvid Best, California
Particulars: 4-star RB in 2007 recruiting class (national top-100 player).
32. New Orleans Saints: CB Patrick Robinson, Florida State
Particulars: 4-star CB in 2006 recruiting class.
5. New York Jets: QB Mark Sanchez, USC
Particulars: 5-star QB in 2005 recruiting class (national top-10 player).
15. Houston Texans: LB Brian Cushing, USC
Particulars: 4-star LB in 2005 recruiting class (national top-60 player).
16. San Diego Chargers: DE/LB Larry English, Northern Illinois
Particulars: 2-star OLB in 2004 recruiting class.
19. Philadelphia Eagles: WR Jeremy Maclin, Missouri
Particulars: 4-star WR in 2006 recruiting class.
20. Detroit Lions: TE Brandon Pettigrew, Oklahoma State
Particulars: 2-star TE in 2004 recruiting class.
31. Arizona Cardinals: RB Chris "Beanie" Wells, Ohio State
Particulars: 5-star RB in 2006 recruiting class (national top-three player).
32. Pittsburgh Steelers: DT Evander "Ziggy" Hood, Missouri
Particulars: 3-star DE in 2005 recruiting class.