More of the same: Georgia has another strong recruiting class

A memory from 2011: Isaiah Crowell signs with Georgia. (AP photo/Mike Haskey)

A memory from 2011: Isaiah Crowell signs with Georgia. (AP photo/Mike Haskey)

A memory from 2011: Isaiah Crowell signs with Georgia. (AP photo/Mike Haskey)

As of 10 p.m. Tuesday, Rivals ranked Georgia’s 2015 class as sixth-best nationally. That’s in keeping with the Bulldogs’ accustomed finish, which — again using Rivals’ ratings — has averaged a national finish of 7.5 since 2002, the year of Mark Richt’s first full crop.

The best Georgia has done over that span was its No. 3 group of 2002; the worst was the class of 2010, rated No. 15. Before Christmas, Rivals had this group ranked No. 3 behind Alabama (but of course) and Southern Cal; the past six weeks have seen some slippage, if indeed such a thing exists in adjudging something as slippery as the athletic prospects of teenagers. Still, sixth-best in the land, third-best in the SEC — there’s nothing at all wrong with that.

As we know, Georgia rarely disappoints on the first Wednesday in February. The Bulldogs have, over Richt’s tenure, recruited well enough to have won SEC championships and national titles. It has taken two of the former, the most recent in 2005; it has managed none of the latter. Until that part changes, the narrative of Georgia football will remain status quo — a very good program but not quite a great one.

Some have labeled Georgia a serial underachiever, but the ratings over the past four seasons wouldn’t bear that out. The recruiting classes from 2011 through 2014 finished, per Rivals, fifth, 12th, 12th and seventh. If we add those together, we get 36. If we divide by four, we get nine. And where did the 2014 Bulldogs finish in the Associated Press poll? Ninth.

So sometimes recruiting rankings do reflect future performance. Other times they don’t. Take the team that finished eighth in last season’s AP poll. Its average recruiting ranking for the past four seasons was 57.5. That team was Georgia Tech. (Nick Bromberg of Yahoo! Sports has a handy breakdown of the past five years.)

Oh, and a word about Rivals: I use it because I consider it the most reliable service that, for historical and comparative purposes, dates back the longest. But others swear by other services. As of Tuesday night, ESPN Recruiting ranked Georgia No. 5; Scout had Georgia No. 4, and 247Sports had Georgia No. 7.

Reader Comments 0

134 comments
zonadawg61
zonadawg61

Anybody hearing anything about Van Jefferson possibly back to UGA? A number of pundits on 247 have him back to UGA as of today... like a bunch. Can't find anything else though. Most Ole Miss fans think he's on his way to Michigan.

OH_IO
OH_IO

Roquan has not sent LOI to UCLA. 


dogs still in the hunt?

MikeS777
MikeS777

UGA just needs to keep most of these guys on the field.  I don't know if Saban keeps his team in a closet somewhere after hours, but he's able to keep his players on the field.  You don't see him having to dismiss kids or play without his star players.  I'm sure there are some conspiracy theories on how that's happening, but the point is Bama doesn't win the SEC this past year without Amari Cooper, Yeldon, and Henry.

Bama has recruited better than anyone with Saban as coach, and they have consistently kept that talent on the field.  The fact that's the case and he only has 3 SEC titles in 8 seasons alone speaks to how tough the SEC has been and how much talent is in the league as a whole.

Meyer has only lost one Big 10 game in 3 years and he's also grossly out recruiting the rest of the conference.  FSU has won the ACC 3 years in a row thanks mostly to the fact that Clemson is the only team that can recruit even close to their level of talent.

ShootinTheHooch
ShootinTheHooch

@MikeS777 No, Saban just lets them do their drug deals from their dorm room. Tuscaloosa is Tallahassee North. Doesn't get any better than that. Play for championships and make some cash without getting in hot water from the NCAA!

OH_IO
OH_IO

@LADawg


drug deals?


dorm rooms?


TCH's digital scales come to mind

ShootinTheHooch
ShootinTheHooch

@OH_IO @LADawg University of Alabama Sophomore tight end Kurt Freitag was found with 112 grams of marijuana and $4,661 in cash in his dorm room the West Alabama Narcotics Task Force announced.

A Bama spokesman said they were going to look into it. 

ShootinTheHooch
ShootinTheHooch

Mark Richt is the queen of the Bulldog Nation. He gets paid ungodly amounts of money to smile and wave for the camera!

SeanLB
SeanLB

We can't even win the SEC East.  Where is all of this "championship" talk coming from?


I support the Dawgs, but dang...get realistic, people.  

bigmacondawg
bigmacondawg

@SeanLB

Why don't you ask the experts in Vegas in August.  We will be one of the top 10 favorites to win the national championship, even with a new QB.

SeanLB
SeanLB

@bigmacondawg @SeanLB But we're always "a favorite to win the national championship".  We just never actually do it.  When then enter the off-season with hopes and dreams only to fail to even represent the SEC East, much less win the conference.


Rinse and repeat.  

SeanLB
SeanLB

@OH_IO @SeanLB The Kool-Aid is sugary strong today.  I love my school (UGA), but never really understand the fans...

ShootinTheHooch
ShootinTheHooch

@bigmacondawg @SeanLB I guess Vegas don't factor in the Richt quotient. He's good for at least two or three goof ball decisions that will cost the Dawgs games each year.

SeanLB
SeanLB

@LADawg @bigmacondawg @SeanLB Like getting annihilated by Florida (with a 4 play offensive gameplan, no less) when everything is on the line.


That's quality coaching right there.  Takes a genius to sink that low.  I actually like Richt as a person, and if we're going to keep him around because it's a good business decision (Don't get it twisted, that's what it is), then so be it.  But, don't expect me to think he's capable of winning a title.  


Maybe I'm wrong and he can get there, but he's shown nothing that should make anyone believe that he can.  

bigmacondawg
bigmacondawg

Another big time recruiting class.  New DC and new OC.  I smell championship.

bigmacondawg
bigmacondawg

@TOJacket @bigmacondawg 

I guess if you're a Tech fan and have absolutely zero chance of ever winning another NC in anything other than ping pong, the best you can hope for is that Georgia doesn't either.

keendaddy
keendaddy

Ohio State finally gets one win against an SEC team and Buckykat forgets history! It's OK Buck, I've got to eat lunch and get back to work, don't have time to splain it to you....

TOJacket
TOJacket

@keendaddy Keen............they won the NC and made it look pretty easy................what are you going to explain?...............35 and counting Keen.

GTBob
GTBob

@keendaddy Ohio State just beat the best team in the SEC with their third string QB. They would probably beat UGA by 30+ points if they played them.

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@GTBob @keendaddy Highly unlikely.


And it was their first ever win against an SEC team ( UGA has handled them pretty good in the past )


Again if that trend continues ill tip my cap.


One year doesn't change a thing. Its called an outlier. 

GTBob
GTBob

@HeadleyLamar Yep, that one game UGA played against Ohio St in 1992 where they one by a touchdown is obviously proof that today's Ohio St team with Urban Meyer leading things would have no chance at beating UGA.

OH_IO
OH_IO

@GTBob


Yep, no chance at all. 


We can only beat teams that are ranked #1, #2  and those that have the top 3 Heisman vote getters. 

OH_IO
OH_IO

This is the dogs best day of the year. It usually goes South from here ending with a thud in a Toilet Bowl. 

keendaddy
keendaddy

Too bad the Tech blogs are so sad this time of year, nerds have nothing to do but be envious of the Dawgs Recruiting haul, lol!

I don't blame you nerds for being here, nothing in your recruiting news to crow about. Might as well come over here and make a fool out of yourselves....

GTBob
GTBob

@keendaddy I am envious of the guys you can sign every year, but we all know you aren't going to do anything with those guys as long as Richt is your coach.

keendaddy
keendaddy

Lol 2 SEC but whooping? TO, Richt gave you the game and it's obvious that you don't understand what a butt-whooping is....keep repeating 2-14, lol!

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@keendaddy They conveniently forget that.


We basically handed them the game. 


We only lose that game 1 out of 10 times. They got lucky. 

TOJacket
TOJacket

@keendaddy We set an Orange Bowl record against the #2 team in the Vaunted West?.....................and your pathetic Coach gave us nothing..........we whipped you Keen.....man up brother.

MikeS777
MikeS777

UGA has hardly gotten the playing time out of these recent classes either.

I think a lot of people forget how many games Todd Gurley, Malcolm Mitchell, Justin Scott Wesley, and Keith Marshall have missed the past two years.  Aaron Murray missed the final two games of 2013.  Sony Michel missed 5 games in 2014.  Add to that having to dismiss Zach Mettenberger, the pictured Isaiah Crowell and the other RBs after 2011, Nick Marshall, the whole secondary after 2013, and more.

Despite all that, they were one play away from an SEC title in 2012, and a blown end to the SC game from a 3rd SEC East title in 4 years.

2 top 10 finished in the past 3 years with or without that adversity is a "consolation" most programs would gladly take.

Hard to say he's got nothing out of it.


GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 Sure. We lost our best defensive player and possibly our best running back before the season started due to academics. We dismissed a likely starter at WR and another likely starter at DT before the season started. Lackey got hurt in the middle of the year, forcing one of our best A-Backs to move to B-Back. Smelter got hurt against UGA and had to sit out the two most important games of the season. Even Thomas himself played the majority of the season on an injured ankle. So yes, believe it or not, some teams besides UGA have to deal with injury and personnel problems. Not everyone else cries about it.

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@MikeS777 Exactly right.


Playing in by far the toughest conference we have done quite well.


Have we reached our ceiling. Nope. But to act like we have underachieved is just plain stupid.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 Most programs would fire their coach if he had gone 7 years without winning a conference title or playing in a major bowl game, all while having one of the most talented teams in the country every season.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @HeadleyLamar Funny how a "disappointing" bowl season for the SEC still ended up with a winning record at 7-5.  The PAC 12 was the only conference to do better.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 Yeah well to win the SEC the past 7 years has meant play for the National Championship, so I'm gonna say you're dead wrong about that.

Also, there are at least 3 SEC schools ahead of UGA in the recruiting rankings every year.  Right now Alabama is #1...again.  Tennessee and Auburn are ahead of UGA with LSU 1 spot behind them.

Florida is usually up there as well, but firing of Muschamp has their recruiting in a bind this year.

The whole "one of the most talented teams in the country" argument loses weight when half the top 10 recruiting classes every year is full of SEC schools.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 The best team that the SEC beat in a bowl game also lost to Virginia. Very impressive. Maybe the top teams in your conference will show up next year and the bottom feeders in no name bowls won't have to carry the banner for them.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 Again, that also assumes most of that talent they recruited stays on the field, which it hasn't been close to the case.  I wonder how Tech's season would have gone if Justin Thomas missed 7 of the final 8 games?  It's easy to take someone's best talent off the field and start talking about underachieving when you're playing with all your guys.

Hedley_Lammar
Hedley_Lammar

@GTBob @HeadleyLamar After the bowl season the SEC just had you are still going to trot out the toughest conference nonsense?


Yes


You are looking at a small sample size ( I thought you Techies were good at math ).


If that trend continues ill agree. But one year doesn't change anything. 

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 Name another major school with a head coach who hasn't won the conference or played in a major bowl game in 7 years yet somehow still has a job.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 GT has a good backup QB. We would do fine if JT went down. Some fans out there didn't even want JT to be the starter at the beginning of the season.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 OK so why don't you dazzle us with stories of ACC greatness this past bowl season?  I'm sure Tech's win was indicative of the conference as a whole...wait...it really wasn't was it?  lol  I mean at least the SEC "bottom feeders" could win their games.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 Tech's win had nothing to do with the ACC. Sorry, but some of us aren't braindead coattail riders beating our chests when our supposed rivals have success that we can't achieve ourselves. 

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 How about Steve Spurrier at South Carolina, or does the old Ball Coach not count anymore?  He just lost to Clemson for the first time in those 7 years yet he gets to watch them go to Orange Bowls because he coaches in the SEC while Clemson is in the ACC invitational.

Gary Pinkel of Missouri, Kurt Ferentz of Iowa...on and on.

You may want to add that Richt has 9 10 win seasons in 14 years as well as 2 SEC East titles in the last 4 years.

No one's been firing coaches with that kind of record.

GTBob
GTBob

@HeadleyLamar I always feel stupider after reading your posts. I enjoy it because it balances out my overwhelming intelligence.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 Ill give you Spurrier, although he took over a dumpster fire of a team and made them relevant which is a different situation. Ferentz has been to a major bowl game recently and people have been calling for his head for years anyways. Missouri, I'm not sure is what you would call a major program. Right has more talent come in every year than those three teams combined.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeS777 If you knew anything at all about our program then you wouldn't have asked the question in the first place. Do I really need to go down the list of guys we lost before the season and during the season? We overcame it and won the Orange Bowl. Some teams fight through adversity. Some others succumb to it.

GTBob
GTBob

@HeadleyLamar Here is a trend. The SEC is 2-7 in the last 5 years in major bowl games where they actually played another conference. 0-5 in the last 2 years.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 SC recruits in the top 20 every year under Spurrier and often is in the top 15.  They struggled this year because a lot of their players from 2013 are playing on Sunday now.  Again, who's firing coaches with Richt's record?  None of the major programs firing coaches have been near his record.  They've all been the same kind of dumpster fires you talk about with SC before Spurrier (Texas, Tennessee, Florida, Michigan, UCLA, USC, etc.)  Even Auburn collapsed a year after winning the national title.  They've put several terrible seasons around 2 great ones.

MikeS777
MikeS777

@GTBob @MikeS777 Yes please list all the guys you "lost".  I'm sure its a crowd of all Americans.  Laskey, Days, Thomas, Neely and all you're impact players were on the field.

I'm not talking about losing just a few guys.  Every team has that.  I'm talking losing your BEST players, you're impact players that win you ball games.  That's what UGA has been losing the past two years.  Not just a 2nd or 3rd WR.  Their BEST WR.  Their BEST RBs.  These are All American talent.  They "fought through" for a top 10 ranking.  You don't take those kind of players off the field and end up with an SEC title.

Tech may have still had a 8 or 9 season without Thomas and Laskey, but no way do they beat UGA without those guys, win the Coastal, or play in the Orange Bowl.  You're fooling yourself if you think otherwise.

GTBob
GTBob

@goblue86 I have no conditions. I didn't even say there were no other coaches. I just wanted him to name some. He named one, which happens to be a legendary coach who completely rebuilt a team.

GTBob
GTBob

@HeadleyLamar After the bowl season the SEC just had you are still going to trot out the toughest conference nonsense? Your division champion lost to Indiana.