(KMOV.com) -- This was not the recruiting class Gary Pinkel needed coming off a very disappointing season at Mizzou. When MU joined the Southeastern Conference Pinkel said that recruiting, especially in the deep south, would have to improve to keep pace with the big boy football played in the SEC. Pinkel went so far as to discard the traditional Missouri uniforms in favor of a drastically new design from Nike in hopes of attracting better recruits with an updated look. Apparently recruits weren't impressed.
Mizzou's recruiting class has been ranked dead last in the SEC. They got only two players from Georgia and one from Florida, typically hot spots for finding talent. They signed no five star recruits, and only one four star- running back Chase Abbington of Fort Zumwalt South.
Pinkel and his staff could have saved face had they landed Ezekiel Elliott, the running back from John Burroughs rated the 9th best RB in the country. Elliott's dad played football at Missouri and his mother was a track athlete for the Tigers. None-the-less, Mizzou was unable to convince Elliott to stay in-state and play for MU. Instead he chose Ohio State.
Obviously, it's way too early to judge the quality of a recruiting class. It's only fair to see how the new players respond to the challenge of playing division one college football. But if the people who rank high school players are correct, this not a promising class for Missouri. In fact, this class may be the beginning of the end for Gary Pinkel. Coming off a 5-7 record, 2-and-6 in the SEC, Pinkel has already used up one year of the job security equity he banked after making Mizzou football relevant again. He'll need to do one of the best coaching jobs of his career to get the Tigers turned around next season, and he now faces that challenge having just recruited perhaps the weakest incoming freshman class in the entire SEC.