UCLA is the nation’s biggest recruiting overachiever?

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Over the last two days over at ESPN.com, John Gasaway has taken a look at how some of the nation’s best programs stack up from a recruiting perspective.

His first look was at recruiting overachievers, which can also be read as the programs that have underachieved on the court. And, it should come as no surprise, that UCLA ranks at the top of that list. Conversely, no program in the country has won as much as Wisconsin with limited — in terms of how the recruitniks rank them — recruiting success.

The most interesting fact that has come out of this study is easily Kentucky’s placement: as a recruiting overachiever.

The way that Gasaway came to this determination is by putting the high-major programs into three classes, one of which is elite. That elite class, which is based on NCAA tournament wins, includes Kansas, North Carolina, Kentucky, Michigan State, Duke, Connecticut, Louisville, Ohio State, Syracuse and Wisconsin. By scoring the recruiting classes over the last five seasons (using this method, developed by Drew Cannon), Gasaway’s number indicate that Kentucky’s recruiting has been out of this world even when compared to the best programs in the country:

This is just how insane John Calipari’s success in talent-delivery has been. Even when you judge his record against the North Carolinas and Dukes of the world, Coach Cal still stands out statistically.

For instance, in Drew Cannon’s scoring system, Kentucky’s 2011 class (remember Anthony Davis?) was the best recruiting class assembled by any program in the past five years — a judgment the NBA seconded last month.

This doesn’t come as a surprise. We all know that Coach Cal has absolutely cleaned up on the recruiting trail. But it always is interesting to see just how strong Cal’s recruiting has been.