Starting with coupled atom-molecule Boltzmann equations, we develop a simplified model to understand molecule formation observed in recent experiments. Our theory predicts several key features: (1) the effective adiabatic rate constant is proportional to density; (2) in an adiabatic ramp, the dependence of molecular fraction on magnetic field resembles an error function whose width and centroid are related to the temperature; (3) the molecular production efficiency is a universal function of the initial phase space density, the specific form of which we derive for a classical gas. Our predictions show qualitative agreement with the data from [Hodby et al, Phys. Rev. Lett. 94, 120402 (2005)] without the use of adjustable parameters.