Articles on Recruiting
1996 SI Article (also click on view this issue)
College Football Recruiting History This is a good article if you can find all 10 parts at this site. Should save it somewhere
HuskerMax has a good site for recruiting information http://huskermax.com/recruits/ I'll add others later.
I've always had an interest in recruiting, but in the last 10 - 20 years some people have become fanatical about recruits and recruiting classes. Some people are obsessed with how many "stars" a player is given as a ranking or the rankings of the whole team in comparison to other schools recruits. I think thats a bit much but will see what I can come up with here, its going to be hard to find anything for the 80s and earlier, maybe even the 90s. It varies by selector as well.
I can remember when you barely heard anything about who the Huskers were recruiting until signing day. As late as the 80s there use to be a conference signing day and then a national signing day. If you signed a player on the conference day all that meant was your school was the only one he could play for in your conference, then you had to sign him again later on a national letter of intent.
You can't even find recruiting lists for most years before 1972 let alone class rankings. This page / chart will show class recruiting rankings by year and the final AP / Coaches Poll rankings. You can figure it will usually take a few years for the recruited players to make an impact for their team, and see how the recruit rankings influence the season rankings. The above link is very good for looking at past years for NU recruits.
Prior to 1973 the NCAA did not have a limit on how many players a school could sign a year or total # of players on scholarship. The various conferences set their own limits.
Football Scholarship Timeline
Total Scholarships on Team Scholarships allowed by Conference per year (prior to 1973)
Big 10 - 30
Prior to 1973 No limit by NCAA. Limit is by individual conference. SEC - 40
1973-74 - 105 (approved at 1973 NCAA Convention) Big 8 - 45
1978-79 - 95 Southwest - 50
1992-93 - 92* Still looking for other conferences, many teams were
1993-94 - 88* independent prior to 1973, that are now in various conferences
1994-95 - 85*
* = Three-year phase-in of legislation approved at the 1991 NCAA Convention.
Not done yet- I'm getting tired of this. I've found several sources for rankings by a service that give different ranks for the same year. Emfinger supposedly has a magazine coming out thiat gives his last 25 years of rankings. I'll get that and then I'm done for awhile.
(some services only rank a top 25)
The reason for multiple rankings for some years is that there were many different sources doing the rankings. I've also found different rankings for a year from a selector from different sources. For example 1996 & 95 with Allen Wallace. I think Wallace has been a part of Rivals since 2002.
Some years I can find more than one and some not at all. I have the recruiting issue of Huskers Illustrated every year they made them and the old Big 8 magazine before that. Some years they mention rankings and some years they say NU had a top 10 class or top 20 but don't give an exact number. If I still lived in Omaha I could maybe go to the library, go through old newspapers and find some kind of rankings for all the years. Maybe I still could do that here in Washington State.