Come on in, the water’s fine.

The more I read about Missouri’s Gary Pinkel, the more I’m impressed with him.  It’s clear he and his staff have already put a lot of thought into preparing for their program’s entry into the SEC (it helps that he’s not stepping into a new situation, as Kevin Sumlin is at Texas A&M).  That thinking isn’t just about schemes and personnel matchups.  It extends to recruiting, too.

Georgia’s going to be rubbing elbows with the new kid on the block.

… Pinkel said the main areas of importance outside of the Tigers’ home state are Dallas and Atlanta. The good thing for Pinkel and his staff is that it’s only about an hour longer drive to Atlanta compared to Dallas. It still accounts for 10-plus hours on the road, but if you’re going to take the time to head to Dallas, you might as well make it out to the hub of the South.

And for Pinkel, it’s well worth it.

“If you look at statistics and analysis of BCS players, they come out of the metroplex around Dallas and then you look at the greater Atlanta area,” he said. “The parallels are staggering between those two cities. They produce a lot of athletes.”

The good news, at least in the short term, is that Missouri’s staff has little experience recruiting Georgia.  The bad news is that over time, Pinkel’s got a solid track record of building recruiting pipelines to Missouri – his first roster had around 10 or 11 players from Texas and now has more than 30.

7 Comments

Filed under Recruiting, SEC Football

7 responses to “Come on in, the water’s fine.

  1. budro

    Missouri’s working South Georgia, too. They’ve got a billboard–”Proud to be SEC”–on 75 in Valdosta, right across from Lowndes High.

  2. Scott W.

    Wax that ass on Sept 8 and those billboards will be as effective as Auburn’s were.

    • retwely

      Although to be fair, Auburn’s billboards are as much about getting the Georgia high schoolers who don’t get into UGA/GT to consider applying to Auburn. Their student body is increasingly made up of metro-Atlantans that got letters from Athens and North Avenue beginning with: “we regret to inform you…”

      • stoopnagle

        There’s some of that, but Bama, Auburn and South Carolina are using scholarship $ to build pipelines into Georgia’s highest performing (and UGA/Tech’s feeders) high schools. Bama, for instance, is making a serious push at attracting better students and recognizes they’ll have to raid Georgia and Texas (high population growth states) to do it. Sometimes getting a fat scholarship to an out-of-state flagship will trump HOPE (especially with the tighter standards).

  3. Scorpio Jones, III

    I wonder if Pinkel will drive to Atlanta…could be an opportunity for the Georgia State Patrol to level the playing field.

  4. Ubiquitous GA Alum

    My Mizzou buddy says that of those TX guys they get they are typically 2-3 star players … then again Cordy Glenn and Kenarious Gates were 2 star guys …

  5. Uglydawg

    Becoming an SEC team is a great step up for Missouri. They will now be the closest SEC campus to everything to the west and north of their campus. If a big old boy from Nebraska or Iowa wants to play in the SEC, he’ going to look at Missouri, already hunting and gathering here in Georgia and in Texas. Oklahoma studs will look at A&M and Mo before UGA or Tn.

    On the other hand, with the seeming degradation of the ACC,the SEC East may harvest a windfall of talent from NC, Md, Va and even Fl.. Clemson, for instance, will find recruiting tougher than ever against UGA, SC, Tn, etc.. It may get to the point that FlSt and Miami aren’t the great choices they have been. Same for VT. I’m not saying they will become weak, but they won’t be able to sell, “and best of all, you’ll be playing in theACC” to kids. I can see this helping even Ky and Vandy.
    Can’t you just hear the pitch….
    “If we beat Duke, Wake, and a few powerhouses like NC St. and GT, and win the ACC championship game…. well, we won’t get to play in the National Championship game, but we will get to play the second or third place SEC team in a bowl and finally get a national television audience””

    The SEC gets stronger from top to bottom. It’s going to be real interesting to see who is at the top in a few years. I’m betting that Missouri and TA&M will be right there, and that the bottom of the SEC will look stronger than many or most conferences’ top.

    And it may be that the middle of the SEC will be much stronger than it is now, and that’s saying a lot. The SEC is going to be amazing.
    If the SEC can avoid a slip up (for instance losing consecutive National Championships to Ohio State or maybe USCw , etc) the ball is going to keep on rolling.