In a year when the in state talent base is so deep that Mark Richt is maneuvering to sign his largest recruiting class in years, Georgia Tech is going a different route.
Georgia Tech’s 2013 recruiting class may turn out to be the smallest since Paul Johnson has been the coach at the ACC school.
The Yellow Jackets project to sign around 14-15 football recruits next February, according to Johnson.
What I can’t figure out is why there’s a numbers crunch at Tech in the first place. It’s not like Johnson’s been loading up on recruits. According to Carvell, Tech’s classes under Johnson run like this: 17 in 2012, 23 in 2011, 19 in 2010, 21 in 2009 and 20 in 2008. Do the math and you’ll find that’s an average of 20 per year. The NCAA allows 85 football players to be on scholarship at any given time, so the only way I can figure that Tech is squeezed now is if there’s been almost no attrition and a boatload of players from his first two classes redshirted. Otherwise it looks like Johnson has left scholarships on the table.
Is there a method to his madness? You tell me.
“I don’t know if we’ll ever get close to 25 signees like some of the other schools because we try not to over-sign. We try to hit our number.”
Two things from this: one, if you’re looking for the real reason the Johnson Doctrine has been crumbling of late, here you go. When you limit your numbers and you’ve got a kid who’s qualified and given a verbal commitment, drawing a line in the sand about taking visits to other schools gets harder and harder. And, two, if Georgia Tech follows a deliberate strategy of not offering the full amount of scholarships it has to make available, it’s an invitation for some other schools to come into this state to pick up the slack. Which it appears many are now doing with some success.
Of course, the other possibility is that Johnson truly believes that when it comes to the triple option, it really is more a matter of the Xs and Os than the Jimmies and Joes. Me, I think it’s just proof that Tech misses Giff Smith badly.