Distance from player's hometown to college

<LINK_TEXT text=“http://rukkus.com/blog/college-football … hometowns/”>http://rukkus.com/blog/college-football-player-hometowns/</LINK_TEXT>

Hopefully I linked this correctly. I’m new to the board and still figuring out how to do this stuff. Found this info and thought is was an interesting look at all division I football teams and the avg distance from their players’ hometowns to campus.

Let me preface this by saying I’m not a Beliema hater or a Petrino lover or HDN lover. So please don’t read too much into this link. Just think it provides one set of true numbers instead of the vague stats that are often tossed out. I’m sure these numbers can be interpreted differently by what you want them to show. My interpretation is that the ‘distance’ argument might be overstated a bit. Plenty of schools are in the same situation as us. There is less than a 30mi difference b/w us and Bama according to this.

Arkansas will never be a hotbed of football talent but this seems to tell me all the major schools recruit nationally a lot more than we want to admit. Bama isn’t just strolling up to Hoover High and reloading a roster each year. Honestly, I was most surprised by Fla, FSU and Miami who I assumed would have much shorter distances.

Excellent. Thanks. Sure puts to bed a lot of myths I read on here.
For those who may not read the link, this is from the article. Most surprising to me is Michigan, Miami, Ole Miss and Wisconsin.

Florida and Texas are big states. Not unusual to travel 5-8 hours inside each state. Ton of talent in between. Not so in a state like Arkansas.

Interesting info though. Welcome to the board and thanks for the link.

Which myths?

And I agree - nice find.

Maybe I shouldn’t have used “myths,” but rather “myth.” This idea that Arkansas is at a disadvantage because other schools in the SEC only have to travel in a 150 mile radius to get their recruiting class. Look at Miami, Ole Miss, Michigan for example.

Alabama’s roster average 29 more miles per player than Arkansas. They’re not signing 25 kids from Birmingham every year.

I don’t think the question is about what state the recruit is from, but rather distance from the campus. Oklahoma’s average is 515 miles and Michigan’s is 511, more than 100 miles further than the average Arkansas recruit. Goes to show that distance doesn’t stop a good recruiter.

I realize what they’re saying, but if you’re in a state that’s spread out and loaded with talent the in-state schools have a greater advantage. For instance, El Dorado to Fayetteville is around 300 miles. You might have 3-5 kids in between that could play SEC ball. Go to Michigan, Georgia, Florida, Ohio, Cal, Louisiana and even Alabama and you’ll find much more talent 300 miles away from campus. The elite programs recruit nationally so that increases their mileage.

Arkansas has disadvantages recruiting. Thats’s no myth.

It is also know myth that several other schools have a bigger pile of recruits to choose from closer to their campuses.

Arkansas does not recruit nationally - hasn’t ever and maybe never will.

That’s certainly no myth.

Only three schools in the SEC face similar recruiting
difficulties and all three play in the SEC-E.
You can probably figure them out.

Michigan is like Tennessee and us in one key way – if they had to depend on in-state talent to win, they’d be in deep trouble. They do recruit nationally and have for a long time (Tom Brady grew up in the SF Bay area, to cite one example). We don’t. We go to Florida because of BB’s connections there, and we’ll go after selected players a long away away (like Ragnow in Minnesota), but a five-star tailback in Akron is probably not going to hear much from us unless he somehow indicated he has a specific interest (like if he has family in Pine Bluff).

Everyone agrees that Arkansas doesn’t produce much Div 1 talent but that is never going to change. My disagreement is with the argument that all the good schools get their recruits from a 150mi radius of their campuses. And that 150mi number has been used by multiple folks on here just this week (not by Dudley or Richard). Sure recruiting would be easier if we had more instate recruits. But if it was easy, we wouldn’t be paying a coach $4 million dollars a year and be ok with 7-9 wins every year. I think Arkansas admin and fans have been extremely tolerant historically and given coaches a chance to ‘rebuild’ more slowly than at our counterparts at Bama or Auburn or Tenn. Those schools that have it ‘easy’ in recruiting also have higher expectations and a shorter leash to get it done.

I think its reasonable for the head coach to get creative and find ways to recruit the best 3-4* nationally (and an occasional 5*) and sell them on Arkansas. I don’t think we can get every “5* RB from Akron” as the previous poster mentioned, but I think its totally reasonable to win our share of recruiting battles for the best 3-4* who are just off the radar of Bama/Mich etc.

There just seems to be an excuse for our continual deficiencies in recruiting when other schools face their own set of challenges (smaller budgets, small stadiums, tougher academics):
Oregon has Nike, Ole Miss is cheating, Oklahoma has tradition, Michigan has tradition, Stanford has world-class academics, Miami has location, USC has LA and celebs. But all of these schools are currently or very recently had extended droughts so clearly its not JUST about getting recruits from close by. Certain coaches are able to sell a place/time/vision and others can’t. I would say 4 years in we are still waiting to see if CBB has that ability at Arkansas.

What are these disadvantages? If the answer is that other schools have “bigger pile of recruits to choose from closer to their campuses”, why then are these schools recruiting nationally and have such a large average of distance per recruit? Numbers do not suggest that these schools are signing this “bigger pile of recruits” that are so close to their campuses. I have no doubt that the state of Alabama has more D1 talent than Arkansas, by a fair margin. It just doesn’t seem that that is where Bama is getting their players.

Also, why doesn’t Arkansas recruit nationally? If the state doesn’t produce much D1 talent (and it is painfully obvious that it doesn’t), why isn’t the staff recruiting nationally?

As JRT mentions in the previous post, there does seem to be quite a bit of excuse making. I am not speaking to any single post, or any individual person, just the vibe I have gathered from message board reading for a decade.

I have wondered this for years. We talk and talk about how the state of Arkansas does not produce enough talent. Agree (the limited talent coming our of Little Rock is killing us!). We talk and talk about how we don’t recruit as well as Bama, LSU, A&M, Florida, Tennessee, UGA, etc., so why not spread our wings and try to get more talent???

A couple of things that I remember (going from memory here):

  1. Saw JFB say several times that he didn’t recruit nationally because if they flew out to California to recruit X, they were in effect flying over 20 other kids that were just as good as X. I bought that. Well, it appears that may not be the case, or we are not only not getting X, we aren’t getting any of the 20 kids that we would have flown over. Our talent level is simply not up to the talent level of our competition.

  2. I will always remember an long article in the paper right before we played Tennessee in the Cotton Bowl. Both Arkansas and Tennessee were ranked. The winner was going to be in the Top 10, the loser not. It talked about the history of the programs. At that point they were very similar in terms of success. It talked about how many instate players each school got, it was very similar. Of course Tennessee had a 100,000 seat stadium and we had half that, that was an advantage no doubt. The article was basically saying they two programs both have a chance to become big time, and one or maybe both would. Tennessee went on to win the game of course. Got ranked in the top 10, and went on to have a great run. We didn’t. The 1990’s sucked for us. Follow that up with an article I read in the 1990’s or early 2000’s about how Tennessee had decided to “recruit nationally” because there wasn’t enough talent in Tennessee (even though they are closer to Alabama, Georgia and Florida than us (further from Texas) they were looking nationally, not just in the south east.) The article talked about how Tennessee’s “national recruiting” had fueled it extended run.

  3. We have to decide to either fish or cut bait. We aren’t going to compete with Arkansas kids only (duh). If extending our reach will get us 3 or 4 more top kids a year, that alone would be a game changer. And I don’t mean 3 or 4 5 stars. While that would be nice, that is expecting to much. If we CAN’T get enough talented kids from Arkansas, CAN’T get enough talented kids from our traditional recruiting areas and CAN’T (for what ever reason) recruit nationally, aren’t we really done??

Below is the comparison just between Ala and Ark. its not that big of a difference. we have players from all parts of the nation also. so to say that they are NOT looking else where is simply not true.
What is true is the level of competition that the players may be playing. Ark has a lot of small school dist and a lot of players are from those. Ala has a lot from mobile. It would be better for us if LR would produce some football talent.

ALA recruiting:
23 different states
Here is the breakdown of # per state 39% ARE FROM THEIR STATE
ALA -33

18 DIFFERENT STATES and 40% home grown

I doubt we’ll see the LR district ever get back to producing the number of athletes back in the 70 and 80’s. The commitment and funding isn’t there. The district is struggling with funding period.