Which out-of-state schools are most successful in poaching Georgia talent?

Which out-of-state college has done the best job of recruiting the state of Georgia’s elite prospects over the last five years?

Which one is doing the best at luring the biggest fish (the 5-stars) away?

We did an inexact science project.

Without Georgia talent, Saban wouldn't be able to hoist the crystal (AP)

Without Georgia talent, Saban wouldn’t be able to hoist the crystal (AP)

To determine “elite prospects,” we took the state’s top 15 overall prospects over the last five years from the 247sports.com composite rankings, which combine the ratings from ESPN, Scout, Rivals and 247sports. We stopped at 15 rather than 20 or 25 because the top 15 seemed to have the most across-the-board offers each year.

Here are some observations:

  • Not surprisingly, Auburn and Alabama were the top out-of-state invaders, luring 12 and 10 signees, respectively, out of Georgia’s top 75 overall the past five years. Nick Saban has had Georgia boys carry him to his crystal balls. Third place was a little bit of a surprise with South Carolina with six, including four this year. The Gamecocks fought off UGA and Alabama for Bryson Allen-Williams.
  • The SEC owns the state’s “elite prospects,” with the conference grabbing 80-percent with 60 of 75, including Tennessee (5), Florida (3), Ole Miss (1) and LSU (1). Is anyone surprised by this?
  • Some people complain about UGA losing too much in-state talent but is it fair? The Bulldogs got 22 out 75. Looking at the Big Picture, is that enough or not? Ironically, UGA got ridiculed for its  “Dream Team” campaign in 2011 but that was its most successful year in landing top homegrown talent with seven out of the top 15. Why has UGA shied away from using that concept every year? If James Franklin can tell kids that he was going to compete for a national championship (or even an SEC Championship) at Vanderbilt – and have them believe it, why doesn’t UGA and Georgia Tech both do the same? Why not?
  • The ACC has some work to do in Georgia, and maybe FSU’s national championship will get things moving in that direction. Clemson was the ACC’s top school with four, including three from this year. The rest of the ACC comprised of Miami (2) and FSU (1). There were none from Georgia Tech.
  • Ohio State coach Urban Meyer is slowly but surely making in-roads in Georgia. The Buckeyes are a legitimate recruiting threat to the SEC with three signees in the last two years. Their proudest moments were luring away Raekwon McMillan from Alabama, UGA and Florida, and beating Tennessee in a head-to-head battle for Vonn Bell.
  • Notre Dame is hit-or-miss with grabbing three signees, including Stephon Tuitt. You know how everybody rags on the recruiting services about Russell Wilson or every NFL player who wasn’t ranked high enough? They got it right with Tuitt, ranking him as the state’s No. 3 recruit in 2011. It was the college scouts (with the exception of Notre Dame and Georgia Tech) who vastly missed the boat on Tuitt. Meanwhile, USC has barely registered a pulse in Georgia after securing Markeith Ambles, who was ranked as a 5-star by Rivals.com in 2010.
Urban Meyer is emerging recruiting threat in Georgia (AP)

Urban Meyer is emerging as a recruiting threat in Georgia (AP)

Finally, the headliners – the 5-stars. Georgia has produced 16 players who have been ranked as 5-stars over the past five years (they are denoted by an asterisk) by one of the four recruiting services. There’s a perception that UGA struggles with 5-stars after not getting any consideration from Robert Nkemdiche (state’s first-ever national No. 1) but the numbers may suggest otherwise. The Bulldogs have landed more than 40-percent of the 5-stars (7 out of 16), and came so close to reaching double digits with Da’Rick Rogers, Montravious Adams, and Ja’Waun James. Tennessee, Auburn and Ohio State have gotten two 5-stars each, while Clemson has one.

Top 15 in Georgia’s Class of 2014

  1. *Norcross DE Lorenzo Carter (UGA)
  2. *Liberty County LB Raekwon McMillan (Ohio State)
  3. *Cedartown RB Nick Chubb (UGA)
  4. *Gainesville QB DeShaun Watson (Clemson)
  5. Brooks County DB Malkom Parrish (UGA)
  6. Cedar Grove LB Bryson Allen-Williams (South Carolina)
  7. North Gwinnett DE Dante Sawyer (South Carolina)
  8. St. Pius DB Nick Ruffin (Auburn)
  9. Camden County DB Kalvaraz Bessent (Auburn)
  10. Carrollton DT Dontavius Russell (Auburn)
  11. Buford LB Korie Rogers (Clemson)
  12. M.L. King DB Wesley Green (South Carolina)
  13. Sandy Creek WR Demarre Kitt (Clemson)
  14. Locust Grove DB Cortez McDowell (Tennessee)
  15. Walton DB DJ Smith (South Carolina)

Top 15 in Georgia’s Class of 2013

  1. *Grayson DE Robert Nkemdiche (Ole Miss)
  2. *Dooly County DT Montravius Adams (Auburn)
  3. *Milton DE Carl Lawson (Auburn)
  4. *Ridgeland DB Vonn Bell (Ohio State)
  5. Norcross RB Alvin Kamara (Alabama)
  6. Walton RB Tyren Jones (Alabama)
  7. Peach County WR Demarcus Robinson (Florida)
  8. Newnan DB Tray Matthews (UGA)
  9. Mill Creek DT Kelsey Griffin (South Carolina)
  10. Camden County QB Brice Ramsey (UGA)
  11. Central Gwinnett LB Trey Johnson (Ohio State)
  12. ELCA DE Isaac Rochell (Notre Dame)
  13. Sandy Creek DB Shaq Wiggins (UGA)
  14. Alpharetta QB Joshua Dobbs (Tennessee)
  15. Elbert County RB Tyshon Dye (Clemson)

Top 15 in Georgia’s Class of 2012

  1. *Lowndes OLB Josh Harvey-Clemons (UGA)
  2. *Harris County DE Jordan Jenkins (UGA)
  3. Stephenson RB Mike Davis (South Carolina)
  4. Jenkins County DT Jonathan Taylor (UGA)
  5. St. Pius DB Geno Smith (Alabama)
  6. Stone Mountain LB Markuss Eligwe (Florida State)
  7. Callaway TE Ricky Parks (Auburn)
  8. Sandy Creek WR JaQuay Williams (Auburn)
  9. Buford LB Dillon Lee (Alabama)
  10. Cedar Grove OL Brandon Greene (Alabama)
  11. Hillgrove RB Kenyan Drake (Alabama)
  12. Dodge County LB Leonard Floyd (UGA)
  13. Stephenson LB Raphael Kirby (Miami)
  14. Creekside DB Joshua Holsey (Auburn)
  15. Buford OL Vadal Alexander (LSU)

Top 15 in Georgia’s Class of 2011

  1. *Carver-Columbus RB Isaiah Crowell (UGA)
  2. *Thomas County Central DE Ray Drew (UGA)
  3. Monroe Area DE Stephon Tuitt (Notre Dame)
  4. Valdosta WR Malcolm Mitchell (UGA)
  5. Griffin DT Xzavier Dickson (Alabama)
  6. Grady CB Damian Swann (UGA)
  7. Valdosta TE Jay Rome (UGA)
  8. Tucker LB James Vaughters (Stanford)
  9. Troup County ATH Quan Bray (Auburn)
  10. Carver-Columbus DT Gabe Wright (Auburn)
  11. Gainesville DE AJ Johnson (Tennessee)
  12. Griffin DB Corey Moore (UGA)
  13. Cook County LB Shannon Brown (Alabama)
  14. Wilcox County QB Nick Marshall (UGA)
  15. Harris County DT LaMichael Fanning (Alabama)

Top 15 in Georgia’s Class of 2010

  1. *Calhoun WR Da’Rick Rogers (Tennessee)
  2. *Newnan DB Alec Ogletree (UGA)
  3. *North Gwinnett OL Ja’Waun James (Tennessee)
  4. *Henry County WR Markeith Ambles (USC)
  5. SW DeKalb DE TJ Stripling (UGA)
  6. ML King RB Mack Brown (Florida)
  7. Gainesville WR TJ Jones (Notre Dame)
  8. Norcross DE Adrian Hubbard (Alabama)
  9. Douglass DT Garrison Smith (UGA)
  10. Warner Robins DT Jeffrey Whitaker (Auburn)
  11. SW DeKalb RB Ken Malcome (UGA)
  12. Loganville RB Storm Johnson (Miami)
  13. Washington WR Antonio Goodwin (Auburn)
  14. Westlake LB Michael Taylor (Florida)
  15. Buford OL Kolton Houston (UGA)

Note: The top 15 is from the 247sports.com composite rankings, and * denotes a 5-star recruit.




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— By Michael Carvell, AJC’s Recruiting Blog

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