10 College Football Programs That Dominate out-of-State Recruiting

Edwin WeathersbyAnalyst IJune 9, 2013

10 College Football Programs That Dominate out-of-State Recruiting

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    Some programs choose to build their roster with homegrown, in-state talent. This approach has its advantages, as players may play a little harder for their home-state school, one they may have rooted for growing up.

    Texas is a school that comes to mind when thinking of a successful program with this approach. However, other programs like going out of state for recruits because they want a talented, but also diverse roster.

    Although many SEC schools can recruit out of state with confidence, this list features only two who dominate in that category. The Pac-12 also has two on this list, and there's another program featured that makes its rivals green with envy the way it dominates out-of-state recruiting.


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    The Wolverines have always had the ability to recruit well outside Michigan. In this year alone, OF Brady Hoke''s 12 commitments, nine from out of state.

    Hoke's top commitment is from cornerback Jabrill Peppers, who is from New Jersey. Utah, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia and Florida also have players in the 2014 Wolverine recruiting class.



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    The Cardinal must be dominant at out-of-state recruiting due to their special standards. Stanford has tremendous academic requirements and must scour the country for recruits who can be admitted into the university.

    David Shaw may have only three commitments, but two (RB Christian McCaffrey and DB Brandon Simmons) are from Colorado and Texas. In 2013 recruiting, seven of 12 Stanford commitments were from non-California players.


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    It is clear that Butch Jones understands that to be successful recruiting at Tennessee, he must be successful recruiting out of state. The Vols have 15 commitments, 11 from out-of-state players.

    The state of Tennessee is not the best hotbed for talent, so to assure Rocky Top is quota of good players, the Volunteers must pound the pavement out of state.

    With Jones having the nation's No. 3 recruiting class (247Sports) with mostly non-Tennessee recruits, the Vols definitely deserve to be on this list.

Ohio State

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    Throughout the years, the Buckeyes have quietly established themselves as a school to be reckoned with in Florida. From landing Santonio Holmes in 2002 to Ryan Shazier in 2011 and now Joey Bosa in 2013, Florida has served Ohio State well.

    With Urban Meyer now at the helm, look for the Buckeyes to be even more dominant recruiting in Florida and other states. The Buckeyes have landed players from California, Texas, Missouri, Colorado and New Jersey already during Meyer's tenure in Columbus. 

Florida State

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    Jimbo Fisher has three non-Florida players committed this year. However, if one needs recent proof of Florida State's OUT-OF-STATE [out of state] recruiting dominance, look no further than the 2012 class.

    Headliners such as Jameis Winston, Justin Shanks and Chris Casher are from Alabama. Mario Edwards is from Texas, Eddie Goldman is from Washington, D.C., and Ronald Darby is from Maryland.

    The 'Noles even signed a JUCO offensive tackle named Daniel Glauser, who is from New Mexico. FSU is a program that is very skilled at out-of-state recruiting.


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    Dabo Swinney is too passionate of a recruiter to only go after Carolina region prospects. Since taking over as head coach in 2008, Swinney has brought in players from states such as Delaware, Arkansas, New York and Georgia.

    Quarterback Tajh Boyd and receiver Sammy Watkins, two of Clemson's best players, hail from Virginia and Florida, respectively. 


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    Oklahoma makes this list because it is a dominant recruiter in Texas. Running back Adrian Peterson, perhaps the best player in Sooner history, is a Texan.

    Bob Stoops mines the good talent from inside his state as well, but the coach also knows that the state of Texas is a dream for a college football coach looking for recruits. Oklahoma signed 13 players from Texas in 2013 and six others from outside the state.


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    Although the state of Alabama is an excellent hotbed for recruits, the Tide would not be where they are today without the help of out-of-state prospects.

    Running back Mark Ingram, who is from Michigan, won the Heisman Trophy in 2009. And Trent Richardson, who is from Florida, was the No. 3 pick in the 2012 draft.

    Wide receiver Amari Cooper, who is from Florida, enjoyed a stellar freshman campaign. Starting left tackle Cyrus Koundjio, who is from Maryland, figures to be first-round NFL draft pick when eligible. And  nose tackle Jesse Williams, who is from Australia, was selected in the fifth round of the 2013 draft by the Seattle Seahawks.

    The list goes on and on for Nick Saban, as he can go anywhere he wants to get a recruit.

Notre Dame

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    The Irish are forced to be dominant when it comes to recruiting out of state, as Indiana is not prime real estate for football recruits. So Brian Kelly and his staff reach out to many states across America to bring in good classes every first Wednesday in February.

    California, Texas and Florida are the best three states for talent and are all represented on the Irish roster. Notre Dame is one of the best recruiting schools in the country today, and the Golden Domers have ascended back into elite status thanks to their ability to recruit nationally at a high clip.


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    The Trojans reside in Los Angeles, but they certainly are not restricted to the borders of the great state of California. USC is a problem for the rest of the recruiting juggernaut schools. They know the Trojans pose a serious threat in any recruiting battle in their backyard. 

    Throughout the years, the Trojans have beaten out the Florida powers for receiver Mike Williams, plucked Dwayne Jarrett and Brian Cushing from New Jersey, beaten out LSU for running back Joe McKnight and even signed Jarvis Jones coming out of high school in Georgia.

    No school in college football is as dominant when it comes to luring out-of-state talent to its campus than USC.

    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 and Cleveland Browns.