The Mobile Press-Register has a series of articles posted looking at the cost of recruiting in the SEC over the past three years. It’s not a completely clear cut comparison, because (as is acknowledged in the story) it’s hard to figure out how much spending on facilities to attribute to recruiting, not to mention how much a coach’s salary to allocate to his skills as a recruiter. Still, if you just look at the recruiting budgets of every school in the conference except for Vanderbilt, the sole private school member, it’s an entertaining read.
Here’s the three-year average spent on football recruiting.
Ole Miss: $410,608
Miss. State: $286,467
S. Carolina: $273,909
That Tennessee tops the list isn’t surprising, given all that we hear about how the Vols have to recruit nationally. But Auburn number two? (Although if you look at the recruiting class rankings over that time, it’s arguable that the Tigers got better bang for their buck than UT did.) It’s also intruiging that South Carolina finds itself last in the conference in spending, not that Spurrier’s classes in that time have been too bad on paper.
Anyway, more to come is promised, including a look at where things are headed, given the regime changes at Tennessee and Auburn. Interesting, isn’t it, that the two schools already spending the most have decided to double-down on their recruiting emphasis? Let’s let a high school coach have the last word.
Said Gadsden City High School football coach Joe Billingsley: “The day it becomes more important than actually playing the game, it will be the downfall of what we’re trying to accomplish.”