Auburn Football Recruiting: Power Ranking the Last 5 Recruiting Seasons
Recruiting is the lifeblood of every college football program. Power ranking the last five recruiting seasons for the Tigers, it's easy to see how the secret science of player selection and development effects on-field production.
The Auburn Tigers have been hot on the recruiting trail in the past four years, entering the national elite in regards to recruiting.
The Tigers have consistently landed in the top-10 of the recruiting rankings since Chizik’s arrival, guiding the Tigers to what seems to be a bright future.
Looking at the past five years of recruiting, here's a look at the last five recruiting classes and how they stack up against each other.
No. 5: 2008 Recruiting Class
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2008 is a year that will never leave the minds of the Auburn family.
2008 saw the end of a decade-long regime when Tommy Tuberville left the Tigers' program. Before his final season began, however, he was able to land a decent recruiting class.
The Tigers were able to bring in guys like T’Sharvan Bell, Barrett Trotter, Darvin Adams and Eric Smith. Auburn lost a lot of battles in-state but was still able to land then-big-time recruit Cameron Henderson from in-state.
Tuberville appeared to be taking a very backseat approach to recruiting with this class, enraging Auburn fans as it appeared the Tigers were conceding the state to Nick Saban and Alabama.
Only one member of the 2008 class remains on the Tigers' roster—T’Sharvan Bell. This was the beginning of the end for the Tuberville coaching tenure at Auburn, as the class was pieced together in a way that made the Tuberville staff appear disconnected from the demands of SEC football.
No. 4: 2009 Recruiting Class
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Chizik and staff scrambled to put together a recruiting class in less than two months in 2009. The Tigers were coming off their first losing season since 1999, with high expectations after the departure of Tommy Tuberville.
Auburn was able to piece together a strong class of players all things considered. The Tigers had success bringing in Onterio McCalebb, Philip Lutzenkirchen, Emory Blake and Demond Washington to name a few.
With the amount of Tigers that were major contributors to the past few seasons and the current seniors that are being looked to for major contributions this season, it's hard to label this class as the fourth best in this list.
No. 3: 2012 Recruiting Class
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The latest recruiting class for the Tigers included some big-time offensive line talent. After last season’s terrible showing up front, the Tigers needed to increase the talent level and bring in guys who would push the linemen already on roster.
Auburn was able to land key recruits like Jordan Diamond, Alex Kozan, Patrick Miller, Avery Young and Shane Callahan to name a few. The Tigers coaches showed their ability to recruit nationally with the addition of Diamond, Kozan and Callahan.
The Tigers finished the recruiting season with the No. 10 class according to Rivals.com, No. 14 class according to 247sports.com, No. 8 class according to Scout.com and the No. 17 class according to ESPN.com.
Gene Chizik and Co. built a great class this past season, but this haul lands at the No. 3 position in the power rankings.
No.2: 2010 Recruiting Class
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Gene Chizik signed his first full recruiting class in 2010. The Tigers landed a host of high-profile players, including JUCO transfer Cameron Newton.
This class showed that Chizik and his staff would recruit the best players in the country, and they could bring them to Auburn. The Tigers landed Michael Dyer and Trovon Reed in this class, as well as Corey Lemonier and big-time kicker Cody Parkey.
The Tigers landed a very highly ranked class, but a number of the players are no longer with the team, or they have not been consistent contributors. Ten of the 33 signees are no longer on the Tigers' roster. Shon Coleman is another Tiger who has not made it to the field just yet.
The 2010 class was the highest consensus ranking that the Tigers have had nationally in the past five seasons. The Tigers were ranked No. 4 according to Rivals.com, No. 6 according to 247sports.com, No. 4 according to ESPN.com and No. 6 according to Scout.com.
Despite the all-lifetime player that Cam Newton obviously was, the overall contribution from this class drops them just below the 2011 group, making it the second-best class in the past five years for Auburn.
No.1: 2011 Recruiting Class
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The 2011 class was one of the highest rated classes so far in the Gene Chizik era. The Tigers were able to bring in a phenomenal defensive back class as well as a wealth of talent scattered on both sides of the ball.
When this past season came to a close, 12 of the 24 signees in the incoming freshmen class had seen significant playing time. This class will provide a number of starters for the coming 2012 season.
The 2011 class was very highly regarded by all the national recruiting services. This class was ranked No. 7 according to Rivals.com, No. 6 according to 247sports.com, No. 3 according to ESPN.com and No. 2 according to Scout.com.
With the level of contribution that came from this class so early, the 2011 Tigers take the top spot as the best class in the past five years for Auburn.