One of the main reasons that Texas A&M decided to join the Southeastern Conference was because they wanted to change the perception of their program inside the state of Texas and nationally. A&M is the only school in the best state for football talent that offers recruits the chance to play in-state and play in the top athletic conference in the nation.
Most expected the move to help the Aggies in recruiting with respect to the other programs in Texas. The surprising side effect of this move is that it has already affected recruiting for Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.
In 2012, Oklahoma signed five recruits from the state of Texas. Over the past five years, Oklahoma has averaged 11 signees from Texas every year. These classes included notable players like Jamell Fleming, Ben Habern and Tom Wort,
Oklahoma State signed 14 recruits in 2012. Over the past five years, they have been averaging 15 signees from Texas in every class. These classes included notable players like Dez Bryant, Parrish Cox, Shaun Lewis and Justin Gilbert.
With A&M's decision to join the SEC this year, a lot of the recruits in the state that would consider the out of state option decided to stay home for their college years.
The Aggie coaches were able to flip Polo Manukainiu and De'Vante Harris from their verbal commitments to Oklahoma and convince them to sign with A&M.
They were able to convince Kenneth Marshall to re-consider his verbal pledge with Oklahoma State and sign with the Aggies.
if you are an Oklahoma State fan or coach, you have to wonder how you can go 23-3 over the past two seasons with two top 10 rankings in the AP Poll, yet you cannot not bring in a top 25 recruiting class.
Oklahoma was able to bring in a top 10 class, but they are missing the stay power from Texas. You can usually count on the Sooners to grab a top defensive tackle or a top running back or wide receiver from Texas every year.
In 2012, they did not grab anyone like that.
While A&M was able to grab the top quarterback, wide receiver and defensive back in the state, Oklahoma was relegated to signing offensive linemen that the Aggies had passed on.
Oklahoma State's highest ranked recruits in 2012 were from Illinois, Georgia and California. That is a far cry from the past five years, when they used to have a field day recruiting in Houston.
The Aggies move to the SEC helped them lock up the Houston area in 2012, and they made noticeable gains in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area and East Texas.
With a coaching staff that includes four former recruiting coordinators on it, the Aggies appear to be just getting started on the recruiting front.
They can offer recruits the chance to play in the best football conference in the country, which is something that no one else in Texas or Oklahoma can offer.
Oklahoma and Oklahoma State saw first hand how much the Ags' move to the SEC is going to affect them this year. It should provide a sneak preview for the rest of the state and region of what will happen in the coming years.
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