tedster - 4:15 am on Dec 8, 2010 (gmt 0)
Welcome to the forums, Derrick. Good to hear your experience with backlinks.
Backlink reclamation is usually one of the first SEO steps I take on when working with huge sites. One example I remember with shudders was a site that had 750,000 backlinks for a URL that was now 404. Seriously. Any small site SEO would break down and weep!
That was a relatively easy win, however. When the 404 backlinks point all over the place, then it can be a major challenge just to know where those URLs should redirect. It's even better if they can resolve 200 again, even if they use new content that explains why it changed. Then the internal links that appear in the template can do their "circulation" job.