College Football Coaches Who Recruit Specific States the Best

Edwin WeathersbyAnalyst IMarch 11, 2013

College Football Coaches Who Recruit Specific States the Best

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    College coaches who recruit the best know where the talent is year in and year out. Some coaches are fortunate enough to be at schools who are located in a brimming talent pool, while other programs like Indiana and Tennessee usually have to venture out of their local areas for most of their recruiting classes.

    There are many states who produce a consistent wealth of talent for college coaches to recruit. Some coaches just recruit those states better than others and have firmly planted their school's flag in a state's soil.

    For this piece, let's take a look at several coaches who recruit specific states the best. Whether it's a coach who reaps in the benefits of his local talent base or a coach who likes to travel to a specific state looking for recruits, the following coaches recruit specific states the best.

Bob Stoops: Oklahoma and More Importantly Texas

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    Stoops does a great job of picking players he wants in his home state of Oklahoma. Oklahoma State's recruiting profile is getting stronger, but the Sooners still run the Sooner State's recruiting trail.

    What Stoops does that is pretty impressive is he pipes talent from neighboring Texas. This is a recruiting move he makes every year that qualifies for what I like to call a "recruiting double whammy."

    Stoops has taken recruits like Keith Ford, Cody Thomas, Rhett Bomar, Adrian Peterson, Brodney Pool and Travis Lewis among many others from his rival in Texas and brought them to Norman.

    Stoops recruits Texas extremely well.

Jimbo Fisher: Alabama

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    I'll get to Fisher and his home state later on, right now, let's quickly discuss FSU's recent run in Alabama. 

    For starters, the 'Noles' raid into Alabama was mainly led by QB coach Dameyune Craig, who's joined the Auburn coaching staff this year. Fisher did hire former Alabama DB coach Jeremy Pruitt as his defensive coordinator a few months ago, so it's going to be interesting to see if FSU's run in Alabama will sustain.

    You can't sleep on the results, however, as Fisher has gotten recruits like Jameis Winston, Justin Shanks, Chris Casher, Wilson Bell, Nate Andrews and Marquez White. 

    For awhile, Fisher even held a commitment from OL Austin Golson, who was from Alabama though eventually he signed with Ole Miss.

Lane Kiffin: Florida

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    Of course, Kiffin recruits California very well but Florida seems to be a state he really likes. He's signed classes at USC with good prospects from the Sunshine State almost every year.

    He almost signed OLB Matthew Thomas in 2013.

    Recruits like Leonard Williams, Nelson Agholor, Nikell Robey, Quinton Powell, Leon McQuay III and Javorius Allen have come under Kiffin's watch as head coach.

    Other Florida prospects to flock to Los Angeles include Keith Rivers, Mike Williams, T.J. Bryant and Frankie Telfort. 

Mack Brown: Texas

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    Brown has been dominant recruiter in Austin for two reasons among others: His school resides in a super hotbed for recruits and he locks up his state very well. 

    Texas has been a recruiting bully in the Lone Star State for years and Brown has strengthened the chokehold the Longhorns have on the recruiting trail.

    Sure, he's seen a few recruits sneak out of his fence, but Brown has an excellent percentage of landing top recruits in his state. He rarely leaves Texas to look for recruits and has built his program almost exclusively of Texan players.

Kevin Sumlin: Texas

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    Texas has had basically a recruiting monopoly on the Lone Star State recruiting trail for a very long time.

    At some point, monopolies must be broken down and it appears Sumlin is out to do just that. Texas A&M is making a lot of noise as an up-and-coming recruiting juggernaut and it is doing it by going head to head with the Longhorns for prospects.

    The Aggies have to the top class in the country right now for 2014 and it's a class of all Texan recruits. Sumlin knows where to get butter for his bread and he knows the butter is in his own state.

Will Muschamp, Al Golden and Jimbo Fisher: Florida

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    The "Big 3 Florida Schools" have to fend off each other for recruits while also going head to head with programs like USC, Alabama, LSU and Clemson for many prospects in their state.

    But the foreign land schools know it is very tough to get Florida kids to leave the state. Fisher, Muschamp and Golden all run programs who have a history of success and a history of recruiting extremely well.

    While all three have shown they are not against leaving Florida for a great prospect, they know where most of their recruiting efforts should go and it's in the state they live in. 

Brady Hoke: Michigan and Ohio

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    Michigan signed 27 players in 2013 and nine were from Ohio. The Wolverines signed 25 players in 2012 and another nine were from Ohio.

    Between 2011 and 2010, Michigan also signed 18 Ohio prospects, so it's pretty safe to say that the Wolverines don't like the Buckeyes but they like taking players from the Buckeyes' backyard.

    Brady Hoke has made the Midwest the main recruiting area for Big Blue and has a good fence up around his state. He's also starting to construct a fence of his own in Ohio, especially the northern part of the state. 

Urban Meyer: Ohio and Florida

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    Meyer is one of the best recruiting head coaches of all time and what he did during his Florida days by racking up elite Sunshine State talent was remarkable.

    Today, he's at Ohio State and has brought in three Florida natives during his initial two classes to Columbus.

    Texas is also a state to watch for Meyer, as he got Mike Mitchell, J.T. Barrett and Dontre Wilson from the Lone Star State in 2013.

    Of course Ohio is a state Meyer has been dominant in the past two years. His main competition for prospects in his home state in Michigan, but Meyer's Buckeyes seem to have to monopoly on the talented Cleveland area.

Les Miles: Louisiana

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    The Mad Hatter is perhaps the best in the country when it comes to locking up his backyard's fence. 

    Any recruit from LSU who's a top-level talent usually ends up at LSU. Sure, you have Tim Williams, Joe McKnight and Landon Collins as players who have left the state, but Miles still has a very strong fence around his state.

    He makes his hay on the trail by spending a lot of time harvesting Louisiana talent, then after that is when he goes into other states to add to what he has. 

    If you're a program coming into Louisiana, you immediately know that LSU is going to be a strong opponent for players you want. 

Nick Saban: Alabama, Georgia and Florida

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    Saban pretty much recruits every state well. He's gotten players from Michigan, Virginia, Tennessee, Maryland and the Carolina region, among other spots.

    He's got an amazingly strong presence in his base state of Alabama and rings a lot of bells in neighboring Georgia. Saban has also gotten talent from Florida, as he has signed five elite Sunshine State prospects in the past two years.

    He knows that the South is rich in talent and Saban's staff hits the bricks hard for him on the trail. Like I said, Saban recruits a lot of states well, but Alabama, Georgia and Florida have been kind to him.

    Texas and Louisiana too.


    Edwin Weathersby is the College Football Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. He has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants, Cleveland Browns and the Las Vegas Gladiators of the Arena League. He spent a year evaluating prep prospects and writing specific recruiting and scouting content articles for Student Sports Football (formerly ESPN Rise-HS). A syndicated scout and writer, he's also contributed to, and Diamonds in the Rough Inc., a College Football and NFL Draft magazine.