The ranking of recruiting classes goes back decades, but interest took a huge leap forward in 2002 when online rankings began being posted by sites like Rivals.com and Scout.com. Here’s a look at how each SEC school ranked when all 13 years since 2002 were averaged, and no … Alabama didn’t run away with this. In fact, the Crimson Tide didn’t even finish first … or second, thanks to probation and postseason bans hurting their recruiting classes in the early 2000s. Today we take a look at No. 14 Vanderbilt.
Here’s a 14-day look at each SEC school and how it has performed in recruiting since the digital age of ranking of all the schools began in 2002. Fans may be surprised by which teams came out on top when all 13 years were averaged.
No. 7 South Carolina
AVERAGE NATIONAL FINISH: 17th.
NATIONAL RECRUITING TITLES: None.
SEC RECRUITING TITLES: None.
BEST NATIONAL FINISH: 6th (in 2007).
WORST NATIONAL FINISH: 24th (in 2006).
TOP 10s: Twice (2003, 2007).
TOP 25s: All 13 classes have been in the top 25.
THE SKINNY: South Carolina has been consistently good at recruiting, and this year’s class (2015 group) may end up being the best of them. The Gamecocks are currently rated No. 4 in the nation in the 247Sports.com composite ranking, and the class is nearly complete with a national best 28 commitments. Recruiting has certainly been a strong point at South Carolina in the past decade plus, whether it was under Lou Holtz or Steve Spurrier. Just the fact that South Carolina has been that consistently good and is still only No. 7 in the SEC tells fans how competitive this league is.
Editor’s note: For this particular series, Saturday Down South’s references to recruiting rankings are to 247Sports.com’s industry composite team ranking from 2010-14, and Rivals.com’s team rankings from 2002-09 before 247Sports did the composite ranking.