Published: February 3, 2012
Ranking recruiting classes is a dicey proposition. While it’s easy enough to figure out which college program (in any sport) brought in the most players widely agreed on as the best prospects in the nation, the danger is then assuming that program X will be assured of on-field success over the next four years. There are just too many intangibles unfolding between now and then to draw such a conclusion.
It’s preferred to think of recruiting classes as bad or good based on what that program needs and whether or not it got it. Nonetheless, when it comes to sports, people are into comparison. So here is our best take on which men’s college soccer programs brought in the most talent among 2012 graduates.
- Akron – Caleb Porter and his staff are just plain good recruiters. A class that includes four veterans of Bradenton Residency brings to mind the haul brought in by the Zips a few years ago which led to back-to-back trips to the College Cup and the program’s first national championship in 2010.
- Virginia –An excellent array of talent from the east, south and Midwest has George Gelnovatch sitting in a good position looking ahead, as usual.
- UCLA - Jorge Salcedo will like his chances of returning to the College Cup in years to come. This class could have been #1 if early commit Marc Pelosi had not opted to sign with Liverpool, but the likes of Mario Rodriguez and Javan Torre ensure the Bruins will keep the talent pipeline flowing.
- North Carolina – Can you say dynasty? That’s what Carlos Somoano and his staff are building at Chapel Hill. Academy standouts Joseph Amon, Nico Rittmeyer, Jonathan Campbell, Alex Olofson and Daniel Garcia all signed with the Tar Heels. Trasnfers don’t count in this reckoning, but Andy Craven coming over from College of Charleston is another big get for UNC.
- Wake Forest – Michael Gamble and Jalen Robinson are just the start of this class, but what a start!
- Georgetown – Brian Wiese is building a strong program in D.C. and this class, including top prospects Cole Seiler, Brandon Allen and Melvin Snoh will only add to it.
- Santa Clara – Kendall McIntosh and Ryan Masch make an excellent 1-2 recruiting punch for the Broncos.
- Maryland – A pair of Dakotas, Edwards and Niedermeier, along with former Residency defender Michael Ambrose lead the class for Sasho Cirovski.
- Tulsa – Surprised? Don’t be. Tom McIntosh and staff are staking a claim to run with the biggest dogs in college soccer. Tarik Salkicic is a great get for the Golden Hurricane.
- SMU – This program has to recruit Texas well and it did.
- Among the other programs who did well for themselves this year are (in no particular order) Indiana, Cal Poly, Duke, Syracuse, UC Santa Barbara, Rutgers, Stanford and San Diego State.