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Who Recruits South Georgia?

By Barry Every
SouthernPigskin.com
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Over the past two recruiting cycles South Georgia has produced a total of 104 FBS signees out of high school.

Over the past two recruiting cycles South Georgia has produced a total of 104 FBS signees out of high school. During that same time period the region has also generated 31 FCS signees. This area encompasses the Savannah/Coastal Region which produced 48 of those FBS signees and 15 of the FCS signees.

Breaking down the South Georgia Class of 2018 we see that 51 FBS signees were produced. The SEC led the way with 13 signees followed by the ACC (9) and the Sun Belt (8). The Southern Conference led the FCS with eight signees. In the Savannah/Coastal Area it was C-USA leading the way with five signees at the FBS level and the SoCon was the top FCS conference with five.

The South Georgia Class of 2019 produced a record number of FBS signees with 53, while the FCS produced one more than the previous year. Again the SEC led the way with 13 signees followed by the Sun Belt (10) and the ACC (8). At the FCS level the Southern Conference reined king again, this time signing seven prospects from South Georgia.

The biggest difference in the Savannah/Coastal Region in 2019 was the fact that the ACC led the way with five signees, followed by the SEC with four. The SoCon took top honors with four FCS signees from this sub-region of South Georgia.

Georgia Southern leads the way for FBS signees from south of the gnat-line over the last two years with eight. They are followed by Georgia (7), Florida State (6), Auburn (5), Georgia Tech (4) and South Carolina (4). The one college outside this area that has left its mark is West Virginia. The Mountaineers signed four players over the past two recruiting cycles.

FCS schools have significantly smaller recruiting budgets when compared to most FBS Conferences. In turn their recruiting outreach tends to be more regional. So it should come as no surprise that Mercer leads the way with six players signed from South Georgia. They are followed by Kennesaw State (4), Jacksonville (3) and Gardner-Webb (3). Just a reminder FBS schools are allowed 85 total scholarships while FCS has only 63 full scholarships to work with.

Moultrie (Ga.) Colquitt County has produced the most FBS level players the past two seasons with ten. Leesburg (Ga.) Lee County is right on their heels with nine. This all makes sense considering the Packers played in the GHSA-AAAAAAA State Championship game during this time frame. The Trojans have captured back-to-back GHSA-AAAAAA State Titles with this group of players.

Looking at the Savannah/Coastal Region four schools have produced five FBS/FCS signees during this time frame, they are Savannah (Ga.) Benedictine, Savannah (Ga.) Calvary Day, Kingsland (Ga.) Camden County and Richmond Hill (Ga.). They are followed by Waycross (Ga.) Ware County (4), Brunswick (Ga.) (3) and Savannah (Ga.) Jenkins (3). Richmond Hill has had the most FBS signees as all five that signed are either playing college ball at the highest level or about too.

So what does this all mean? For starters prospects in future classes will now know which conferences and colleges are more likely to seriously recruit their area. Yes, schools from all over the country come to this fertile ground. But in the end the proximity to home and how often family members will be able to make Saturday trips plays a major role in the decision process.

Last year Oregon signed Tifton (Ga.) Tift County defensive end Andrew Johnson. This past season Leesburg (Ga.) Lee County defensive tackle DeAngelo Griffin signed with Minnesota, marking the second year in a row that the Gophers nabbed a prospect from South Georgia.

Secondly there are other options outside of playing Power-5 or even FBS football. This region is heavily recruited by schools from the Big South, OVC and the Southern Conference. You may think they offer less, but that is simply not true. Everyone one of these schools is offering full rides.

Our goal at SouthernPigskin.com has always been to help as many prospects as possible play at the highest level while receiving a free education. The cold reality is that playing football comes to an end sooner than later. Having an education should help open other career opportunities that will last you the rest of your life.

In return we only ask that the student athlete do their part in the classroom. You’re not underrated or overlooked if you can’t meet the NCAA minimum requirements. Some colleges require even higher standards than the NCAA minimum; so the better your academic standing the more doors you will open.