It's the biggest factor in deciding the success - or failure - of any major college athletic program.
For no matter how talented of a coaching staff is running the program, if that staff doesn't recruit the talent necessary to win, it won't win.
All indications are West Virginia University head football coach Dana Holgorsen and his staff are off to a good start in the summer recruiting battles.
The most exciting news to come out of Morgantown this week - that didn't involve the ongoing legal feud over broadcast rights - was the transfer of University of Houston running back Charles Sims, who shunned entering the NFL Supplemental Draft as well as offers from UCLA and California to become a Mountaineer. A senior who has one year of eligibility remaining, Sims touched the ball 364 times in Houston's high-powered offense his first two years as a Cougar, before an injury slowed his progress his junior year. He has averaged 6.2 yards per carry and 10.8 yards per catch.
Sims picked WVU because he was familiar with Holgorsen's offensive scheme as he was on the Houston staff when Sims signed with the Cougars.
That isn't the only potentially good news.
WVU also landed a pair of highly-regarded senior wide receivers from Miami high schools who will be part of the Mountaineers' recruiting class of 2014.
If you are looking for the next Tavon Austin, keep an eye on Lamar Parker, a 5-foot-8, 155-pound speedster out of Booker T. Washington High School. Scout.com describes his as "hell on wheels in the open field and can flat run past defenders with his exceptional speed."
Then there's Jacob McCrary, a senior wide receiver at Coral Reef High School, who announced he will become a Mountaineer and be part of WVU's 2014 recruiting class after initially casting his lot with Florida State. The 6-foot-1, 175-pound had offers from such prestigious programs as Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Kansas State, Miami, Notre Dame, Ohio State and UCLA.
WVU already has its first commitment for the recruiting class of 2015. It didn't have to look far to get him and he has a name that is quite familiar to Mountaineer fans.
Stone Wolfley, a 6-foot-4, 238-pound tight end and defensive end who will be a junior at Morgantown High School this fall, already has committed to play for WVU in two years.
His father, Dale Wolfley, was a four-year lettermen for the Mountaineers from 1987 to 1990 and serves as coordinator of player relations for WVU. His uncle, Ron Wolfley, was a West Virginia running back from 1981 to 1984.
Dale Wolfley endorsed his son's choice.
"I know the kind of people these coaches are because I've watched them up close," he said. "I know they've got the program headed in the right direction."
Contact Dave Poe at email@example.com