Apr 8, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Michigan Wolverines former player Juwan Howard (left) and former player Jalen Rose (hat) cheer during the championship game in the 2013 NCAA mens Final Four at the Georgia Dome. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Was the Fab Five the greatest recruiting class ever?

With Kentucky seemingly bringing in multiple top 10 recruits each season, fans may begin to wonder what the greatest recruiting class of all-time is.

Kentucky has a case, actually many cases. In modern times, both their 2011 class (Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Marquis Teague) and their 2009 class (John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins, Daniel Orton, and Eric Bledsoe) have a fair argument. UNC’s Brandan Wright, Wayne Ellington, and Ty Lawson-led class of 2006 and Florida’s 2004 class with Joakim Noah, Al Horford, and Corey Brewer also could be included.

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Is the Fab Five, which featured three future NBA players in Chris Webber, Jalen Rose, and Juwan Howard, better than any of these?

Based off production at the college level, three of the five classes listed won national titles, with the 2009 UK class and the Fab Five the odd ones out. However, the Fab Five made back-to-back national title games, something only the 2004 Florida class can also lay claim to (and even they have the upper hand, having won both their title game appearances).

The 2009 UK class, however, has arguably the most NBA talent aside from possibly the Fab Five, with Wall, Cousins, and Bledsoe among the best young players in the league right now. Despite the talent, it’s hard to make arguments for their 2009 class considering they did not win a title.

All the remaining classes have at least three future NBA players, but 2011 UK’s class has the weakest third star in Teague. As good as Davis was and is, depth matters in this discussion, and that UK class didn’t have it in comparison to these other stellar classes. Similarly, as good as the 2006 UNC class was and in spite of winning a title, they don’t compare wit the Fab Five or Florida’s 2004 class.

Which brings us to the two sides who made back-t0-back title game appearances. While the easy answer is Florida considering they won twice, you’d be doing a disservice to Michigan and the Fab Five for what they accomplished. While the Gators repeated as sophomores and juniors, Michigan did it a season earlier. Even more, their entire class found themselves in the starting five, while Florida “only” had four starters from their class.

In reality, either answer could be right, with the right argument made. Personally, it’s hard to say that a recruiting class that entirely found their way into the starting five during their freshman season isn’t the greatest. But Florida obviously accomplished what they could not by winning two titles.

Which do you think is the better recruiting class, or is there a different one? Let us know down below!

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Tags: Duke Kentucky Michigan North Carolina Recruiting Unc

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