The state of recruiting

Mergz at Saurian Sagacity has a couple of posts up exploring the 2008 recruiting class, one that looks at how much talent was generated on a state by state basis and one that measures how well programs did in keeping their in state talent. Both posts are well researched and worth a read, but I wanted to focus more narrowly on what he wrote about Georgia – both the state and the football program.

For a talent pool, Mergz used the top 300 high school seniors listed at He sorted the players out by state and compared the percentage of players from a state against the talent pool versus the population percentage of the state against the national population.

The state of Georgia comprises a little over 3% of the total population of the US. Based on that percentage, if the high school talent pool matched the overall population, Georgia should have placed nine or ten kids in the Scout 300. The actual number of seniors in the talent pool was 21. On a percentage basis, that was the second highest overproduction of talent in the country (only Alabama was higher).

The good news for Dawg fans is that not only did the state overachieve in the production of top high school talent, but the Georgia program did an excellent job locking down that talent. Of those 21 recruits, 9 committed to Georgia (42.9%). No other school got more than 2 of the players in that pool. Only one of those kids signed with Georgia Tech.

Just to compare that percentage with a few of the other heavy hitters in recruiting, Texas hung on to 25% of its in state talent pool, USC checks in with 25.7% (and was second to UCLA in that regard), Florida signed 14.3% of the state’s top talent and Ohio State signed 30.8%.

There were a couple of schools which did an extremely impressive job of locking down the in state talent. LSU signed six of the top eight players in state and Alabama signed a remarkable eight of the top eleven.

With the numbers down for the class of 2009 (although if tight ends keep walking away, who knows?), it will be difficult for the Georgia program to lock down as much of the best in state talent as it did this year unless the overall numbers also decline. It will be interesting to see which schools take up the slack, if any develops.


UPDATE: has produced a handy chart that breaks down the total number of 2008 signees by state, showing how many kids stayed in state and how many signed outside of their home states. Looking at Georgia’s numbers there, you can see why some think there’s room for another D-1 football program in the state.

(h/t The Wizard of Odds)


Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting, Stats Geek!

3 responses to “The state of recruiting

  1. Looking at Georgia’s numbers there, you can see why some think there’s room for another D-1 football program in the state.

    Yeah, a state like Georgia really ought to have two, don’t you think?

    (Yeah, I know it was obvious. Just wanted to get there before anyone else did.)


  2. I threw that fastball down the middle hoping that someone would turn on it. 😉


  3. Thomas Brown

    I find it interesting that we would sit in here and quote a Florida Gator WebPages site that states that “in your lifetime, Florida has a winning record over Georgia” when the facts of that study indicate that not only does Florida not have an advantage in the series over even the last four years with it split 2-2, but that in fact 47-37-2 record over Florida a lead of double-digits that Georgia has enjoyed in the series over Florida my entire lifetime.

    As to this study, the Gator fan states that Pennsylvania has a more talented recruits who signed with colleges than Ohio, when the results actually are (disregarding JUCO recruits and disregarding PREP school recruits), that Pennsylvania had in fact 78 high school football seniors sign with colleges in 2008 out of a population of 12 million. Ohio, by the way, had 146 with over 11 million in population.

    Read the Gator’s study of recruiting 2008, and one would surmise that in fact Pennsylvania is better for the high school football talent than Ohio. Yet, in fact, Ohio is smaller and produces twice as many as Pennsylvania.

    He also has an interesting manner in which to slice up the recruiting 2008 where he shows a nice graphics of how Alabama with 95 high school football recruits is made to look better than Georgia’s 158.

    And, the Gator fans who write on that Gator Blog you reference here, wouldn’t have a clue.