Wins and Losses in Recruiting

Every single recruiting season regardless of how teams do on the field in terms of wins and losses certain players are destined to attend that particular school. This year more than maybe any other you will find players that because of strong family ties, childhood fans and other reasons it appears the choices are obvious.

Christian Green comes to mind as does Jeff Luc and others. Christian Green has been to Florida around eight times and is scheduled to attend this weekend. He will be on hand to watch as the No. 1 ranked Florida Gators host the Tennessee Volunteers. On the surface it appears that Green is likely headed to Florida State. His mother went to school at Florida State and his cousin played for the Seminoles and those are only a few ties to the program. Why has Christian Green not announced his intentions to play for Florida State if that is where he intends to play? Why has he taken eight trips to Gainesville with his parents if he is not strongly considering the Gators? All of these questions might not be answered for several months but one thing is certain. No matter how many times Florida State gets beat if that is his choice that is where he will play his college ball.

Many times I read "why on earth would such and such player want to play for that team?"

It is simple to be honest with you many of these top ranked players feel they are the one that will come in and turn the program around. Some players think it's better to be the big fish in the little pond than the small fish in a big pond. If I am the most talented player on my team then I will stand out more, get more attention, score more touchdowns and improve my draft status. That is clearly not the case and if you are the only option on your team you will find yourself getting double coverage or teams run away from you and your stats could actually not represent the kind of player that you truly are.

When you are on a team that is loaded with players what happens? You will find yourself drawing more single coverage allowing you to create more opportunities to show what you can do. Not many prospects look at it this way, one that did realize that was Andre Debose. Debose knew that at Florida he would not face double coverage as much as he might had he opted to play elsewhere. More talented players around you means more opportunities and more yards or touchdowns or whatever position you play.

If Carols Dunlap was the "only" player on the Florida defense that could hurt you then offensive coordinators would game plan accordingly and his stats would decrease drastically in my opinion. With Jermaine Cunningham on the opposite side teams cannot run away from Dunlap the entire game because they are then creating opportunities for Cunningham.

Jeff Luc was a big fan of Florida State early on in the process and still is to this day. He once told me had Florida State offered him early in the recruiting process it would probably be over by now. They did not and he started to take some visits namely to Florida.

What he saw in Gainesville blew him away but was it enough to sway him away from the Seminoles? Again, only time will tell with some of these players but as fans you need to understand these players do not look at only wins and losses number one because they are not a part of that team yet so that is not a reflection on them and what they bring to the table.

At the level in which the Florida Gators recruit all potential prospects feel as if they are good enough to play anywhere in the country and most of the time they are correct. You are dealing with the top 10 percent maybe in the nation and the one thing they do not lack is confidence. I used Christian Green and Jeff Luc as examples only and this is not intended to single those two out by any means. Green and Luc are two of the most talked about prospects left on the board and they meet the requirements in which this was intended for.

Again, if all prospects looked at was wins and losses then Boise State would land every major recruit in America. That is NOT a knock on that program at all. I respect what that team has been able to accomplish. What winning will do is draw players from a national level to come give you a little bit more of a look than they previously might have in years past like a Ronald Powell.

Ronald Powell is the top ranked player on the entire West Coast and one of the top five players in America. In year's past a player of Ronald Powell's caliber might have been thought to be a slam dunk to USC and rightfully so. When Pete Carroll and the Trojans come calling they get their man. What is different about this year in particular is fascinating if you stop and think about it. The Florida Gators have won the BCS national title two of the last three seasons. They are in prime position to win it again this year. If the go wire to wire it will mean the top high school players in America since they were in ninth grade have seen the Gators win it three out of their four years in high school. Trey Burton, Mack Brown, Ronald Powell, Chaz Green, Jeff Luc, Chris Dunkley and many others have seen nothing other than the Gators being on top of the college football world during a time when teenagers are very impressionable.

Having said that it is one of the reasons players such as Ronald Powell and others from across the country are giving the Gators a serious look. However, it does not mean for players such as Jeff Luc and Christian Green they will end up in Gainesville solely based off what the Gators have done the past couple of seasons and what they will do this season. Again, it is not only about wins and losses. If it was that easy then recruiting wouldn't be any fun.


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