May 2, 2008

Breakdown: Class of 2004 full of duds

When you look back at the Class of 2004 in the Lone Star State, it really was Adrian Peterson and all the rest.

The 2004 Heisman finalist and reigning NFL Rookie of the Year was an easy selection as the state's top prospect when he was a senior, but nobody could have ever guessed that he'd emerge as perhaps the only superstar from the entire class of prospects within the state of Texas.

In breaking down the Lone Star Recruiting Top 100 for 2004, Peterson is the only first day NFL Draft pick in the group and only one of two players that have been drafted from this class by the NFL to date, with former Texas defensive tackle Frank Okam being the other.

More than anything else, this class might be remembered more for its poor collection of academic stars and criminals, as 25% of the class saw their college careers end with academic woes or off-field troubles. When you throw in injuries and four other players making the decision to pursue other sports, you've got a class with as many complete misses as it has starters.

Of course, while the elite talent might not be as strong as in most years, there are number of players from this class that have enjoyed very strong careers, including Okam, LSU offensive lineman Herman Johnson, Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell and Kansas defensive tackle James McClinton.

Overall, the top ten of the list might have been the worst in the history of the Lone Star Recruiting rankings. Although there were only two true busts in the top ten, players like Rhett Bomar, Drew Kelson, Cedric Dockery and Bobby Reid have either been forced to deal with off-field woes, injuries or simply being beaten out by a better player.

If you're wondering if there were any players that weren't name to the top 100 in 2004, but when on to star at the next level, the answer is not really. The three big omissions that year from the list were San Antonio Sam Houston's Jarrett Dillard (a two-star recruit) who earned All-America honors at Rice, Richardson Berkner cornerback Aqib Talib (two stars), who emerged as an All-American and first round pick at Kansas, and Iowa cornerback Charles Godfrey (two stars).

Outside of those three, there's not a lot of big-name misses to go along with the big-name busts, with former McKinney North athlete Shannon Woods (two stars) as the only other in-state omission worth noting.

Here's a look at the breakdown from the 2004 Top 100:

NFL Draft picks -2
NFL 1st round picks - 1
All-Americans - 3
All-conference - 13
Starters - 41
Role players - 22
Academic issues - 19
Off-field issues - 6
Pursued other sport - 3
Injuries - 12

Click here for a full link to the 2004 Lone Star Recruiting Top 100 list.




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