Signing day and the usual suspects

One thing to remember this week:  the names may be slightly re-ordered from year to year, but in the end, the rich always get richer.

Consider that in the past five recruiting classes (2013-17, using the 247Sports Composite rankings):

• Four schools have ranked in the top 10 in each year: Alabama, Auburn, LSU and Ohio State.

• Three other schools have ranked in the top 10 in four years: Florida state, Georgia and USC.

• In all, just 17 schools have had a top-10 ranking in those five years (the others are Michigan three times; Florida, Notre Dame, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Texas and Texas A&M twice each; and Clemson, Oklahoma and UCLA once each).

• When it comes to a top-20 ranking, the group is even tighter, as 29 schools have been ranked in those five years. But there are few outliers: Of those 29, five (Arizona State, Maryland, Michigan State, Mississippi State and Washington) have been ranked once in that span. Thus, that means that just 24 schools have had multiple top-20 recruiting classes in the past five years. That’s not a wide variety.

• In the current top-20 rankings – and, yes, they will change on NSD – every single school has finished in the top 20 at least once and 19 have finished in the top 20 more than once in the past five years.

Same as it always was.

Sure, it’s noteworthy that Smart has apparently taken Georgia to the next level, particularly because no other school in the division has followed along.  But the real message here is that if you haven’t been part of the party before, it’s hard to get an invite today.


Filed under Recruiting

19 responses to “Signing day and the usual suspects

  1. For those who think Boom is going to be Smart’s foil in the East, he has a long way to go to close the talent gap. USCe has always gotten Georgia and Clemson’s leftovers. Spurrier could coach them up. No one is saying Muschamp’s name in the same breath.

    Pruitt is an unproven commodity as a head coach after really only being considered a real candidate for any position in the last 60 days. I have no doubt he’ll recruit, but will he come into Atlanta as Fulmer and Garner did? I doubt it.

    Mullen is the one to be concerned about. He had no problem generating offense with Florida quality recruits with Meyer. When the Gators are at their best, they score points in bunches. Thank goodness he brought that boat anchor, Todd Grantham, with him.

    Kirby could dominate the East like no one has since 1990s Florida or the Cocktail Party could become the East version of Bama/LSU.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Macallanlover

      FU scored points in bunches while Spurrier was there, not so much since then. Tebow was a special talent during his time there but there was a defensive balance in Gainesville while he was there. Gators were hard to stop but not a blow you away offense.

      I am mixed in my expectations about Mullen, he certainly should be able to beat the likes of Boom and Jimmy Mc, but his MSU teams were pretty well contained by good defenses. I do think it will be a UGA and FU battle for the East in the coming years, but expect it will lean our way.


  2. Uglydawg

    Florida, Tennessee, South Carolina and Missouri.

    Those are the teams we keep discussing as potential challengers to Georgia’s chances of being the dominant team in the East

    . I suppose they are all going to improve, esp. Tennessee since they have nowhere to go but up. None are recruiting on the level of CKS right now.

    Who know what coaches will be able to pilot their team back into contention the quickest? Missouri is probably in the best position, though. They are geographically on the northwest corner of the SEC map, which gives them better access to the sparse but vast recruiting grounds to the north and west of the ” Show Me” State..not to mention that they are almost without competition for players in that State. So I think Missouri will be the quickest threat to Georgia’s quest for Eastern dominance.

    All of these coaches cannot succeed. At least one or two of them will eventually get fired because of unrealistic expectations from their fan bases. I would think that CJP will be that guy. Tennessee just isn’t going to be what it used to be again. CJP at UT may look a lot a re-run of Boom at UF.

    UF (or FU, as Cojones calls it) is the team that will do well with a veteran coaching staff, IF Mully can get players on the same level as CKS is..tall order.
    I don’t so easily dismiss Boom and USCe as ee does. He will be solid if not spectacular at USCe , and will be a bigger problem in the East than UF or TN for the next few years. USCe may be better than Tennessee forever.. Not saying he’s going to dominate the East, but he’ll be in the mix.


    • My problem with Boom is that he wasn’t successful at Florida while sitting in the most fertile recruiting territory in America. He doesn’t even have that to lean on at South Carolina. Unless BMac proves to be an offensive genius, I just don’t ever seeing the Cocks scoring enough to beat the elite SEC teams.


    • rchris

      “Sparse but vast recruiting grounds to the north and west” It is vast, but unfortunately it’s way way more sparse. 247 composite 4 and 5 stars there:
      Iowa, Minnesota, Dakotas, Wyoming, Montana -ZERO
      Nebraska, Kansas -1 each
      Colorado 2
      Missouri can compete, but their key state is Texas… 50 4 and 5 stars there this year. Also to a lesser extent Illinois… 5 blue chippers there this year. And of course they have to lock down their state… 6 4 and 5 stars from Missou this year.


      • Uglydawg

        Yep.. I wonder how much playing for an SEC team matters to these kids from the heartland. There’s enough there if Mizzo can pull them.


        • They don’t. Kids from the Midwest want to play in one of the “Big” conferences. Missouri isn’t a destination for those kids. They want to go to Nebraska, Iowa, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Michigan or Ohio State. Those schools are much more serious football schools than Missouri … another reason we should have never admitted them.


    • DawgByte

      I don’t dismiss Boom either, because he seems to have learned from his past mistakes and has SCe moving in the right direction. I’m a little more bullish on Pruitt than others seem to be. If he can temper his behavior he could be formidable. Dealing with Fulmer second guessing him 24/7 is the 100 ton gorilla in that situation. Like most, I think Florida will rebound, but it may take Mullen a couple of years.


      • Boom may have the Cocks rising, but is he going to build that talent base into a real contender? I don’t see it.

        Pruitt may be a good head coach. I personally don’t think he has the temperament for it either on or off the field. The only reason Fulmer was successful was the Atlanta recruiting pipeline … that spigot has been shut off for 15 years now.


  3. The Truth

    One top 10 class in 5 yrs and a natty and multiple playoff appearances means nobody’s been coaching them up like Clemson. That or they’re the best at identifying talent the recruiting services miss.


    • Or they sign the best QB prospect since $Cam right under our noses.

      I think Dabo does an excellent job of identifying “under the radar” blue chips. Nobody seems to be better at developing them and using them than Brent Venables does with that defense.


    • You comment is a big reason why Bama is going to be calling Dabo first when the cyborg finally retires.


  4. LakeOconeeDawg

    I’m wondering if the Coke bottle got thrown around the other day. Saban loses a 4* QB to Princeton…….


  5. steve

    Using past performance in recruiting to predict UT’s likely future success ignores a huge confounding variable…..FAT PHIL’s addition to the ‘UT traveling 3 stooges show’. The magic happens when Tracy Rocker (UT’s new defensive line coach) shucks the sweater off a 4-star recruit’s Mom in the kitchen and tries to ‘brew her coffee-Knoxville style’. Jeremy Pruitt is trembling on the sofa wound up tight as a retarded boy’s pocket watch, and FAT PHIL won’t take his hands out of the Original Recipe bucket. His entire face is greasy and he ran out of napkins so he uses the furniture.
    The three stooges were cross generational legends…much like the UT fan-base sees their own version. How can UT not be the number 1 school? Peyton went there….ask any UT fan…Oh wait, you don’t have to ask them…they immediately tell you.


  6. Raleigh St. Claire

    This is actually more ingrained than you might imagine. If you look at the list of winningest football programs of all time, it pretty much mirrors the recruiting rankings today.

    There are some notable outliers – Nebraska (the biggest), Pittsburgh and Arkansas (fallen programs), and West Virginia.

    Demographics have a lot to do with Nebraska, and to a lesser extent Pitt and West Virginia.

    Arkansas is getting crushed by playing in a conference where its competitors simply have more going for them.


    • 69Dawg

      The problems with Nebraska began when the NCAA limited the number of walkons, prior to that they had about every football player in Nebraska walking on. This gave them a chance to redshirt and grow some of the best offensive lineman in the country. After the limit it all went south. Nebraska should have never left the Big 12. They can’t recruit against the OSU, Mich, MSU of the B1G in their territories and they are effectively out of Texas because of Ok. UT, and the rest of the Texas schools. Scott Frost will be the greatest coach in their history if he can win the B1G and get them to the CFP.


      • Raleigh St. Claire

        I agree. Its hard to see a path to success for them these days. They’re going to have to bring in guys from TX, CA and FL, which they used to do in the 70s, 80s, and 90s.

        However, that is much harder these days with the rise of other programs and Nebraska’s decline.

        That plus your point about walk-ons (plus more stringent testing for certain types of behaviors) suggests they’re not likely to enjoy again their past successes.


      • Macallanlover

        Yes, a very difficult challenge for Nebraska, if Frost can turn things around it will have to be immediate while he is the hot name in the CFB market. I wouldn’t rule it out because that division can be had, but the odds are against them ever regaining a similar position of national rank. They may steal a Big14 title or two, perhaps make the playoffs a time or two, but never get back to a consistent Top 10 program again. Just too much geography to overcome, imo. Great, great fans though; wish them well.