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May 24, 2013

CT Recruiting Class of '05

UConnReport.com is going back to do a year-by-year look back review and list every FCS commitment in the state of Connecticut. On the list will be the players' star ranking, state ranking, the school they signed with and then come to a conclusion: Overrated, Underrated, Got it Right or Incomplete (for players who never made it to the college level).

This feature is not an indictment on the Rivals star ranking. Instead, it is more of a look to see what kind of talent the state has produced over the period from 2005-2009. 2005 is the starting point because that's the first time that Rivals gave clear state rankings for Connecticut. 2009 is the ending point as those players have finished their college careers.

Here is an explanation of the Rivals rating system.

5 Star- Franchise Player; considered one of the elite prospects in the country, generally among the nation's top 25 players overall; deemed to have excellent pro potential; high-major prospect

4 Star- All-American Candidate; high-major prospect; considered one of the nation's top 300 prospects; deemed to have pro potential and ability to make an impact on college team

3 Star- All-Region Selection; considered among the region's top prospects and among the top 750 or so prospects in the country; high-to-mid-major prospect; deemed to have pro potential and ability to make an impact on college team

2 Star- Division I prospect; considered a mid-major prospect; deemed to have limited pro potential but definite Division I prospect; may be more of a role player

0 Star-Sleeper; no Rivals.com expert knew much, if anything, about this player; a prospect that only a college coach really knew about


1. Andre Jones (Boston College) 4-star, Overrated- The safety was actually a Maryland native that prepped for a year at Avon Old Farms. Jones signed with BC, but failed to qualify and transferred to Akron. At Akron, Jones was a premier kick returner, and made All-MAC 3rd team as a junior. If Jones performed like that on the BCS level then his 4-star ranking would've been warranted. For not dominating the MAC, Jones did not live up to the hype.

2. Matt Shaughnessy (Wisconsin) 3-star, Underrated- Shaughnessy had a stellar career at Wisconsin where he compiled 174 tackles, 18.5 sacks, and 41.5 tackles for a loss. The defensive end earned All-Big Ten 2nd team honors as a junior, and All-Big Ten honorable mention as a senior. Shaughnessy was selected in the 3rd round of the 2009 NFL Draft by the Raiders and had had a solid NFL career. UConn was in Shaughnessy's final four, but ultimately Barry Alvarez won that recruiting battle.

3. Willie Harriott (Penn State) 3-star, Overrated- Harriott was a role player at Penn State that saw some spot duty on special teams and a little bit on defense.

4. Asaph Schwapp (Notre Dame) 2-star, Underrated- Schwapp was a starter for the 'Irish during his last two seasons at the school and recognized as one of the best fullbacks in America. Sadly, Schwapp died too young at the age of 26 after a hard fought battle with non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.

5. Mike Hicks (UConn) 2-star, Underrated- Hicks wasn't an NFL-caliber right tackle, but he was a solid right tackle on the college level for sure. Hicks started all 13 games as a senior, 12 as a junior, and 10 as a sophomore. His contributions certainly exceeded the expectations of a two star offensive lineman.

6. Chris Baker (Penn State) 2-star, Underrated- Baker played three years at Penn State before being thrown off of the team for an off-field incident. At Penn State, Baker started 7 games as a junior and had the most tackles out of any defensive tackle. Baker transferred to Hampton and dominated in his one season there by racking up 62 tackles and 8.5 sacks.

7. Dan Ryan (UConn) 2-star, Underrated- Like his teammate Hicks, Ryan was a solid offensive lineman for two years with the Huskies.

8. Dan Cascone (Wisconsin) 2-star, Got it right- Cascone was a reserve defensive tackle at Wisconsin and saw a little bit of game action during his time in Madison. Cascone was exactly what you'd expect out of a 2-star player.

9. Brevon Williams (Buffalo) 2-star, Incomplete- We could not find any data for Williams and he never suited up for Buffalo.

10. Julian Cartie (Buffalo) 2-star, Incomplete- Like Williams, it doesn't look like Cartie played a down for the Bulls.

14. Glen Mourning (UConn) 2-star, Got it right- Mourning was a role player on special teams as a junior and did not play his senior year.

17. Brennan Coakley (Penn State) 2-star, Overrated- Coakley had some tough luck at Penn State as he suffered 3 different knee injuries which kept him off of the field for almost his entire career.

The class of 2005 totals:
5- Underrated
3- Overrated
2- Got it Right

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