Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014

Top football players at BYU over the last decade who weren't highly recruited

By Jay Yeomans, For the Deseret News

Published: Mon, March 24 2:25 p.m. MDT

 Brigham Young University's Jonny Harline celebrates his last minute touchdown catch leading his team to a 33-31 win over the University of Utah in football at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake, Utah Saturday Nov. 25, 2006.  August Miller/ Deseret Morning News

Brigham Young University's Jonny Harline celebrates his last minute touchdown catch leading his team to a 33-31 win over the University of Utah in football at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake, Utah Saturday Nov. 25, 2006. August Miller/ Deseret Morning News

(August Miller, August Miller/ Deseret Morning N)

National Letter of Intent signing day is squarely in the rearview mirror, and the hype over the Cougars' potentially great recruiting class has died down to some extent. The focus for BYU has shifted from recruiting to spring practice and the opportunity to prepare for the 2014 season.

Just like the focus of Cougars have shifted to what happens on the field, it is a perfect time to look at how past recruits actually translated on the field.

BYU has had very key four-star recruits in the past decade. Some have had a significant impact on the field (Kyle Van Noy and Bronson Kaufusi) while others never panned out the way fans expected.

Getting high-level recruits is an important part of college football, but it is what a program does with the not-so-big-name-recruits that is a major part of a school's success on the gridiron.

BYU has had plenty of greats rise from low-ranking players coming out of high school and junior college. Here is a look at the most impactful players from that category over the last decade.

Note: each star ranking comes from Rivals.com.

Here's a look at the list.

Jay Yeomans is a courier by day and a freelance writer by night. He is the creator and lead writer of the website jmoneysports.com. Contact him at jmoney34@hotmail.com. Twitter: @jmoneysports

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1. Naval Vet
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I'll bet it didn't take too long for Jay to put together a list of 10 cougar football players who weren't highly recruited.