1. Ohio State's draft was impressive enough in raw total picks ...
2016 Ohio State fell short of breaking 2004 Ohio State's seven-round record for the most total picks (14) and 1984 Texas' overall record (17 out of 336 picks in 12 rounds), but 12 still tops the legendary 11 by Miami in 2002, 11 by Florida State in 2015, and what have you.
Urban Meyer's Buckeyes seemingly made history in every round, though, finishing one shy of 2004 Miami's record of six first-rounders, then tying the record for the most picks through two rounds (seven), then setting the record for the most through three rounds (10). After Nick Vannett to Seattle at pick No. 94, the Buckeyes had 10.6 percent of all picks.
And then this happened:
Ohio State produced as many draft picks in the first four rounds as the entire Pac-12.— Bryan Fischer (@BryanDFischer) April 30, 2016
2. ... and that this happened with three rounds left is just bonkers ...
Remember when Ohio State had a player at every defensive spot drafted? They’ve now had one from EVERY position group https://t.co/6Z0ZIdlsKT— Land-Grant Holy Land (@Landgrant33) April 30, 2016
3. ... but it's even crazier once you look at the value.
Which would be more impressive:
A. Having five first-round picks
B. Having 10 seventh-round picks?
You'd choose A for your school, right? All draft picks are not equal. The average first-rounder lasts more than five years in the NFL; the average seventh-rounder doesn't make it to year two. Every coach would rather be able to show recruits a few first-rounders than a bunch of day-three picks.
Getting players drafted is good, but getting players drafted early is even better. And nobody's ever topped what OSU just did.
Let's use a simple scoring system to show this. I call it Draft Points. It assigns a point value to every pick from 1 through 250. The first pick is worth 10 points, the second is worth 9.96, and so on, all the way to .04 points for the 250th pick. (Picks after 250 aren't worth any points, since many older drafts went well beyond the current rough average of 250.)
Adding up all those point values for the biggest single-school draft hauls since the 1970 merger ever gives us this ranking:
|Ranking||Draft Points||Top pick||Total picks in top 250|
|1||2016 Ohio State||94.04||No. 3, DE Joey Bosa||12|
|2||2004 Ohio State||79.96||No. 18, DE Will Smith||14|
|3||1981 Pitt||79.6||No. 7, LB Hugh Green||11|
|4||1988 Oklahoma||72||No. 5, CB Rickey Dixon||13|
|5||2008 USC||71.6||No. 7, DT Sedrick Ellis||10|
|6||2006 Ohio State||71.16||No. 5, LB A.J. Hawk||9|
|7||2009 USC||70.76||No. 5, QB Mark Sanchez||11|
|8||2000 Tennessee||70.64||No. 5, RB Jamal Lewis||9|
|9||2006 USC||70.2||No. 2, RB Reggie Bush||11|
|10||2005 Oklahoma||69.92||No. 13, OT Jammal Brown||11|
|11||1984 Texas||69.76||No. 6, S Mossy Cade||14|
|12||2002 Miami||69.36||No. 7, OT Bryant McKinnie||11|
|13||2015 Florida State||68.56||No. 1, QB Jameis Winston||11|
|14||1993 Notre Dame||67.76||No. 2, QB Rick Mirer||9|
|15||2010 Florida||67.72||No. 7, CB Joe Haden||9|
|16||1980 USC||67.04||No. 3, OT Anthony Muñoz||10|
|17||1995 Florida State||66.76||No. 11, DE Derrick Alexander||10|
|18||1995 Colorado||66.36||No. 4, WR Michael Westbrook||10|
|19||1994 Notre Dame||66||No. 7, DT Bryant Young||10|
|19||1977 USC||66||No. 1, RB Ricky Bell||12|
Ohio State's 2004 draft had five players picked after the fourth round. Ohio State's 2016 draft packed an entire dozen into the first four rounds.
Pitt's 1981 class had three in the top 20. Ohio State's 2016 class had five in the top 20.
Miami's 2004 (60 Draft Points) had six first-rounders, but nothing after that until the seventh. Similar story for Oklahoma's famed 2010 (52.4).
This isn't a perfect scoring system. There aren't any. It errs in the name of simplicity, and that's a sacrifice I'm happy with. There are many other ways to judge draft value, most of which are NFL-focused. OSU's 2016 would do extremely well in any of those, too.
4. This was largely the product of Meyer's first recruiting class.
Meyer's first full recruiting cycle produced Ohio State's 2013 class, which ranked No. 2 in the country behind Alabama. The earliest any of its members could've possibly been drafted was this year. That group still has two more drafts to go before exhausting its pro potential, and it's already produced four first rounders (Joey Bosa, Ezekiel Elliott, Eli Apple, Darron Lee) and a second rounder (Vonn Bell).
Meyer's next three classes at OSU ranked No. 3, No. 7 and No. 4, BTW.
5. And this will only boost the 2017 class, which is currently No. 1.
The Buckeyes have 13 early commits, including two of the country's top 13 prospects and 10 four-stars.
Recruits in various class years say they're impressed. The comments on social media by several top-300 recruits during the draft expressed the same sentiment.
Here's 2017's No. 1 receiver, for example:
Bro what. Ohio State with 3 of the Top 10 picks— Donovan P. Jones (@dpeoplesjones) April 29, 2016
And now everyone can get sick of Ohio State shoving this information in faces, as in the following video, but OSU's earned the right to do so.
6. Surely the roster is depleted now, right? Nah.
The Buckeyes have two in the top 29 of Dan Kadar's way-too-early 2017 mock draft, and most NFL Draft folks aren't even high on quarterback J.T. Barrett yet. As a freshman, his passer rating was second only to a junior named Marcus Mariota, he can run and he was still OSU's steadiest QB in a weird 2015. If Jared Goff can be a No. 1 pick, surely Barrett can be a first-rounder.
Plus, about a dozen others could consider leaving early. (If they don't, then 2018 is probably another big crop of Buckeyes.)
That so many players happened to leave at once is partly coincidence, and an equally impressive record is Florida State's three-year total picks record. Let's see if the Bucks can make a run at 29.
7. "So what? None of this matters, and the only things that impress me are either national championships or accomplishments by the team I happen to root for."
In Meyer's four years, Ohio State is 50-4 (FBS's best record) with a national title, a Fiesta Bowl win, a Sugar Bowl win, a Big Ten championship, two division championships, a 4-0 record against Michigan, a 1-0 record against Alabama and a fifth straight top-10 recruiting class inbound.
The NFL thinks the players who did all that are good players, and now OSU can use that to add even more good players.
It matters, whether it makes OSU's rivals happy or not.
8. "So what? Let's wait and see how they play as pros before we cause all this commotion."
This is a college football newsletter, friend, not an NFL newsletter. Our time with these players is done. The NFL newsletter is right this way.