NCF Nation: Feeding Frenzy

SAN DIEGO -- From 1990 until 2008, the San Diego Section high school single-season rushing record went unchallenged -- surviving the likes of Rashaan Salaam, Arian Foster and Reggie Bush.

Then came 2008, and Gary Taylor's record fell not once, not twice, but three times in the same season. Robbie Rouse (Madison), Ricky Seale (Escondido) and Tyler Gaffney (Cathedral Catholic) all reset the standard. A year later, it fell a fourth time, and Dillon Baxter (Mission Bay) had the record all to himself.

[+] EnlargeRicky Long
AP Photo/Gregory BullRocky Long knows evaluating recruits is vital when competing against the likes of the Pac-12 and SEC for in-state recruits.
A common thread among these record-setting backs is that they went on to play at colleges in California. Colleges that weren't San Diego State. Rouse went on to have a brilliant career at Fresno State. Seale and Gaffney went to Stanford, where Seale hopes to contend for the starting job in 2013. Gaffney left football to pursue a professional baseball career. Baxter, a five-star recruit, went to USC but had a checkered career. He then ended up at San Diego State for a brief period but never played a down.

In 2010, Oklahoma came in and poached three players from the San Diego area: wide receiver Kenny Stills (La Costa Canyon), running back Brennan Clay (Scripps Ranch) and linebacker Tony Jefferson (Eastlake).

This is the double-edged sword San Diego State coach Rocky Long faces while recruiting at a midlevel school in California, just like Brady Hoke before him, and Chuck Long before him, and so on and so on. There is plenty of supply. But there is also tremendous demand. This year, Oregon has already plucked three from San Diego, the four-star Robinson brothers from Lincoln High -- Tyree and Tyrell -- and four-star wide receiver Darren Carrington (Horizon).

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