An argument can easily be made that recruiting stars are not infallible (edit due to auto correct on my iPad) . However, ND has not consistently recruited consecutive top notch recruiting classes since Holtz.
I think that Coach Kelly has a good track record of developing players. however, if the recruits came in at a higher level, then combining that with development means much greater success. Pete Carroll did both...Saban is doing the same...Meyer is another example.
Look at the glory days at ND. ND had great talent. Even Kuharick and Devore loaded up with talent that made Ara able to come within :30 seconds of a NC in '64 and a NC in '66. Ara also recruited very well and came close to a NC in '70 and '74 and had a NC in '73.
The talent that Coach Leahy was able to recruit will probably be unparalleled in college recruiting ever again...plus he was an exceptional coach in development.
You need the best talent and the best coaching to be in a NC race on a consistent basis. ND needs to recruit much better than they are currently doing.