Today (December 16th) is the first day of the early signing period for college football programs to sign their high school recruits.  The early signing period runs through Friday.

There never used to be an early signing period in football (there is in every other sport).  But with coaches being fired, or leaving a school for another opportunity in December on an annual basis, the NCAA created the early period (The late signing period is in February).

Here's a look at Michigan State's 2021 recruiting class

I don't need to tell you that recruiting is the lifeblood of every major college football program.  If you have little or no talent on your roster, you can't win consistently.  But how many times do you see a HS five-star recruit completely flame out and the two or three star guy become a great player and head to the NFL?  Every single year you see it.

Whenever people tell me "Hey Brock, we got this five-star kid to commit to Michigan/Michigan State, isn't that great??!!"  I just say "That's great, but let's wait a couple of years to see if they pan out."

Mark Dantonio made his mark (no pun intended) at Michigan State as a guy who developed 2-3 star guys into NFL players in three years.  The most classic examples are former QB Kirk Cousins and OL Jack Conklin, who were not highly thought of out of high school.  But they turned into NFL players in 3-5 years.

Recruiting is vital, don't get me wrong, but it can be overrated.  People get fixated on the stars they see on high school prospects.  I also think that while recruiting services have a place and are good reference points, those are overrated too.

Having said all of that, best of luck to all the signees who are officially committing today.

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SEE MORE: The Ten Best Running Backs in MSU Football History