Combine performance descriptors and predictors of recruit ranking for the top high school football recruits from 2001 to 2009: differences between position groups

J Strength Cond Res. 2011 May;25(5):1193-203. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318215f546.


Several studies have documented the normative data for football combine performance measures in college and professional players. The primary purpose of this study was to examine the anthropometric and combine performance differences between highly recruited and recruited high school football players. A secondary purpose was to provide a historical basis of descriptive data for elite high school football players from 2001 to 2009. Height, weight, 40-yd sprint time, 20-yd shuttle time, vertical jump height, angle drive drill time, and broad jump distance were extracted for 2,560 players from a commercially available website. Mean scores across star value and playing positions were compared using analysis of variance (ANOVA) and 1-way ANOVAs. Statistical significance was found between highly recruited (5 and 4 stars) and recruited players (3 and 2 stars) for height (highly recruited = 1.878 ± 0.06 m, recruited 1.85 ± 0.11 m), weight (highly recruited = 99.77 ± 4.76 kg, recruited = 97.54 ± 4.84 kg), 40-yd sprint (highly recruited = 4.76 ± 0.327 seconds, recruited = 4.84 ± 0.142 seconds), and vertical jump (highly recruited = 0.775 ± 0.11 m, recruited = 0.750 ± 0.121 m). Ten backward stepwise regression models were calculated (position × variables) with statistical significance set at the p < 0.05 level. The 40-yd sprint time, height, and weight were significant predictors of star value across 10 positions. These data provide anthropometric and performance profiles for highly recruited high school football players. Sprinting ability and physical size are the most consistent predictors of subjective ranking. The results may help strength and conditioning specialists better understand the anthropometric and physical attributes that distinguish highly recruited from recruited players and which attributes are likely to predict higher star value scores.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Anthropometry
  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Exercise Test / methods*
  • Football / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Personnel Selection / methods*
  • Physical Fitness / physiology
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Regression Analysis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Young Adult