Monday, June 3, 2013
Pac-12 off to slow start in recruiting
By Ted Miller
ESPN.com released its latest recruiting rankings last week and USC ranked... ranked... well, how about that.
USC, typically the Pac-12 recruiting leader, didn't rank in the top-25, nor did any other Pac-12 program.
Michigan was No. 1, Texas No. 2 and Florida State No. 3. Perhaps it's a shocker that no SEC team was in the top-three, though the SEC did have five of the next six spots.
Again... no Pac-12. Boston College, Vanderbilt, Kentucky and Texas Tech are in the top-25. But no Pac-12.
And this isn't just an ESPN thing, as some of you often insist. Rivals has no Pac-12 team in its top-25, with Utah leading the charge at No. 34.
Same with Scout. It ranks USC 28th and the Pac-12 fifth among conferences is recruiting thus far.
Time to panic? Absolutely. Go nuts.
Kidding. Recruiting rankings in early June mean little. Here's a guarantee that the final recruiting rankings will feature Pac-12 teams in their top-25s.
But the apparent slow start is notable.
Kevin did a recruiting roundup last week, and just one ESPN 150 player had committed to a Pac-12 school: Athlete Cameron Denson of Tucson, Ariz., to his hometown Wildcats.
Part of the problem is just 18 players from the West Coast made the ESPN 150, suggesting it's a down year in the region.
Of course, it's no secret that high school players in the Southeast and Texas, where high school football is big business, get more media attention than they do on the West Coast. Players in those areas often play in front of tens of thousands of fans.
That leads to more hype. It also leads to more and better game film. And higher recruiting rankings. There's no conspiracy. It's just the way it is.
There's no question that more players from California are going to be better college players and better NFL players than Georgia or even Florida. Heck, there's no question that players from, say, Ohio are being underrated.
We know this because NFL rosters tell us this.
Still, as a Pac-12 blogger who must deal with you guys' handwringing over recruiting rankings, I'd appreciate if the Pac-12 coaches would pick things up a bit.