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April 26, 2012
Draft stars: How the first-rounders were rated
There were as many former two-star prospects as five-star prospects (four) taken in the first round of the NFL draft Thursday night.
Two of the former two-star guys starred at Boise State: defensive end/outside linebacker Shea McClellin, who was selected by Chicago, and running back Doug Martin, drafted by Tampa Bay. The other former two-star prospects were Memphis defensive tackle Dontari Poe and Syracuse defensive end Chandler Jones.
The five-star guys who went in the first round were Alabama running back Trent Richardson, USC offensive tackle Matt Kalil, Notre Dame wide receiver Michael Floyd and Alabama cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick.
Former four-star recruits led the way in the first round, with 13 selected. There were 10 former three-star signees, and one draftee (Oklahoma State quarterback Brandon Weeden) graduated high school before the Rivals.com ranking system was in place. Weeden played five seasons of minor-league baseball before enrolling at Oklahoma State to play football in 2007.
Among the conferences, the SEC again had the most first-round selections, with nine. Four of the top 10 picks were SEC players. Five Big 12 players were picked, followed by four from the Big Ten (all after pick 22) and Pac-12, three from the ACC, two each from the Big East, Mountain West and independent ranks and one from Conference USA.
Both independent players were from Notre Dame, which was one of 10 schools that had at least two players picked. Alabama had four, and Baylor, Boise State, Illinois, LSU, Oklahoma State, South Carolina, Stanford and USC were the others with two. It was the second year in a row Alabama had four first-rounders.
In terms of high school ball, there were five former Texas prep stars selected. Second-most among the states was Tennessee with three; there were two players each from Alabama, California, Florida, Ohio, Oklahoma and Virginia, and one each from Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, South Dakota, Washington and Wisconsin.
(Click each player's name for prospect profile with high school highlights and more.)