Top 10 classes of the past 25 years

When the assignment came in to rank the top 10 basketball recruiting classes of the past 25 years, I was not excited. More than once I looked at the list and just cringed. This project made me nervous. Reading the final list still does.

But with all the hype about Kentucky assembling perhaps the best class of all time this year, the questions were begging to be answered. Where does this UK class rank historically? And if not No. 1 -- yet -- then who was?

Before we get into the list, let's define the criteria. This is the 10 best classes of the past quarter century as they looked on paper at the time of their signing. That's how we rank classes in the recruiting world. No benefit of hindsight, no factoring in how the players turned out in college or the pros. This is recruiting classes at the time they signed. (Of course, easier said than done. You try doing this without having a bias of how the players eventually turned out seep into your mind.)