Interstate Blitz: Why college football programs are crossing state lines to recruit talent | Syracusefan.com

Interstate Blitz: Why college football programs are crossing state lines to recruit talent

Scooch

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Axios published this piece over the weekend. I highly recommend everyone here read it - takes all of 5 minutes to get through. Particularly those who opine about the state of recruiting in Syracuse's "home region".


Some highlights:

The era of hometown talent in college football may become a thing of the past.

State of play: The Southern schools that won the past eight College Football Playoff National Championships have historically relied on in-state talent. But an Axios analysis of recruiting data shows that, across the country, college football programs are increasingly recruiting from out of state.

  • And the trend is growing — Power Five rosters are increasingly composed of out-of-state recruits. From 2009 to 2022, Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota's in-state share dropped more than 20 percentage points.
Even the powerhouses are turning to out-of-state recruits. During this period, Texas’ in-state share dropped over 17 percentage points. Although Florida and California also had significant declines, Georgia’s in-state recruiting record stayed consistent.

What does this mean for SU, and our likely next head coach?
 
I did read it - and again and again, the school people like to scoff at for whatever reasons that we compete against (VT, Wake, Pitt, UNC, NCSU etc) are still based on the foundation of local kids. Superpowers can skim the cream wherever they want.

Whoever we get I assume would have the binders or whatever on how talent acquisition will look. All our hires have been centered on how the coach will recruit, this won't be different I wouldn't think.
 
I did read it - and again and again, the school people like to scoff at for whatever reasons that we compete against (VT, Wake, Pitt, UNC, NCSU etc) are still based on the foundation of local kids. Superpowers can skim the cream wherever they want.

Whoever we get I assume would have the binders or whatever on how talent acquisition will look. All our hires have been centered on how the coach will recruit, this won't be different I wouldn't think.
What's funny is that I'd say that Dino has recruited much, much better for defense, and Shafer recruited much, much better for offense. Overall both their recruiting was below average.

Personally, I think it's a mistake to categorize CNY as the region of SU's "foundation". Obviously it hasn't been for 25 years now, if not longer. To your point, the foundation of those Virginia and NC schools is a lot larger geographically and far more populous.

It's ~200 miles from Syracuse to Central NJ, and ~275 miles to western PA.

It's also ~175 miles from Raleigh to Charlotte, and ~240 miles from Harrisonburg (JMU) to Virginia Beach.
 
What's funny is that I'd say that Dino has recruited much, much better for defense, and Shafer recruited much, much better for offense. Overall both their recruiting was below average.

Personally, I think it's a mistake to categorize CNY as the region of SU's "foundation". Obviously it hasn't been for 25 years now, if not longer. To your point, the foundation of those Virginia and NC schools is a lot larger geographically and far more populous.

It's ~200 miles from Syracuse to Central NJ, and ~275 miles to western PA.

It's also ~175 miles from Raleigh to Charlotte, and ~240 miles from Harrisonburg (JMU) to Virginia Beach.

Yeah and our best top end talent was arguably was from GRob.

And I agree, it's not. More that yeah 25 years ago we were both better and had more local - ish kids.

And miles aside - which I also agree with from a practicality point of view - high schools and coaches and culture and all that is still oriented inside state lines. I'm 4 plus hours from VT and 30 minutes from the University of Maryland yet Tech (and UVa, JMU flags) are prevalent in these parts in the fall. Maryland might as well be Cuse.

Edit - my grouchy gripe is less about SU than how the other schools are doing it. Just more want to point out how are competitors manage sustained success.
 
What's funny is that I'd say that Dino has recruited much, much better for defense, and Shafer recruited much, much better for offense. Overall both their recruiting was below average.

Personally, I think it's a mistake to categorize CNY as the region of SU's "foundation". Obviously it hasn't been for 25 years now, if not longer. To your point, the foundation of those Virginia and NC schools is a lot larger geographically and far more populous.

It's ~200 miles from Syracuse to Central NJ, and ~275 miles to western PA.

It's also ~175 miles from Raleigh to Charlotte, and ~240 miles from Harrisonburg (JMU) to Virginia Beach.
I think the foundation to where kids are going now has changed nationally too.

Up here in Mass ALL the best players are in the ISL now. 25 years ago, that was not the case at all. They were in the publics and the catholic schools for the most part. Some kids still drift into the catholics that play the publics but they all go prep. I suspect that's the case in tri state, DMV, etc. The prep school holds the keys to these relationships
 
Yeah and our best top end talent was arguably was from GRob.

And I agree, it's not. More that yeah 25 years ago we were both better and had more local - ish kids.

And miles aside - which I also agree with from a practicality point of view - high schools and coaches and culture and all that is still oriented inside state lines. I'm 4 plus hours from VT and 30 minutes from the University of Maryland yet Tech (and UVa, JMU flags) are prevalent in these parts in the fall. Maryland might as well be Cuse.

Edit - my grouchy gripe is less about SU than how the other schools are doing it. Just more want to point out how are competitors manage sustained success.
I hear ya. My point is simply that we have to deal with reality. NYS HS football stinks at producing P5 talent, particularly relative to its population. That's just an "is". And it hasn't been good for decades.

If that's an insurmountable obstacle then SU should downgrade football, and I mean that sincerely.

When SU was good in the 90s we pulled a lot of talent from PA, NJ and the DMV. That talent is still there. We've just had a series of crummy coaches who can't go get it. And now thanks to NIL we have the avenue to grab talent from more far flung places. We need a coach who can do that too.
 
NYS HS football stinks at producing P5 talent, particularly relative to its population. That's just an "is". And it hasn't been good for decades.
Genuine question...was it ever good? My knowledge and history of NYS HS football only goes back to the late 80s when I played in Section 4. I left NY in the mid-90s, so I don't know what it's like now, but when I played it seemed none of the coaches in Section 4 were aware that the forward pass had been legalized. There weren't a lot of kids over 200 lbs, even on the OL and DL, and WR were essentially outside blockers for pitches and option runs. So from a skills standpoint, even if we had the physical traits to play D1 football (we didn't), we didn't have any coaching or teaching of skills that would be required to play college ball. Of all the kids I went to school with, which would be like 9 or 10 graduating classes or about 3000 kids, exactly one played D1 football (at Syracuse). And were a Class A school, so that wasn't the issue. So prior to the mid-80s, was there a higher percentage of NY HS kids that played high level college football?
 
Genuine question...was it ever good? My knowledge and history of NYS HS football only goes back to the late 80s when I played in Section 4. I left NY in the mid-90s, so I don't know what it's like now, but when I played it seemed none of the coaches in Section 4 were aware that the forward pass had been legalized. There weren't a lot of kids over 200 lbs, even on the OL and DL, and WR were essentially outside blockers for pitches and option runs. So from a skills standpoint, even if we had the physical traits to play D1 football (we didn't), we didn't have any coaching or teaching of skills that would be required to play college ball. Of all the kids I went to school with, which would be like 9 or 10 graduating classes or about 3000 kids, exactly one played D1 football (at Syracuse). And were a Class A school, so that wasn't the issue. So prior to the mid-80s, was there a higher percentage of NY HS kids that played high level college football?
I have no idea, to be honest.

People suggest that our late 80s resurgence was built on the backs of "local" players. But I don't know if that means we had a huge chunk of our two-deep from upstate NY, or if that means we had a few standout contributors from there and the rest coming from elsewhere.
 
I have no idea, to be honest.

People suggest that our late 80s resurgence was built on the backs of "local" players. But I don't know if that means we had a huge chunk of our two-deep from upstate NY, or if that means we had a few standout contributors from there and the rest coming from elsewhere.

I'd say it was likely the latter.

It would be one thing if we could lock down the best "local" talent, and build around that.

Bottom line - we can NOT do that.
Because most of them don't wanna play for a mediocre (at best!) "local" college, when they can go anywhere and be involved with a winning program that goes to bowl games on the regular.

Today's Tim Green and Rob Konrad aren't walking thru that door.

We're lucky if we can get under the radar local types who can (hopefully) blossom once they're here.
Like the Jones brothers, or some of the D-line guys the past few years.

So - you recruit good prospects wherever you can find them.
Period.
 
Genuine question...was it ever good? My knowledge and history of NYS HS football only goes back to the late 80s when I played in Section 4. I left NY in the mid-90s, so I don't know what it's like now, but when I played it seemed none of the coaches in Section 4 were aware that the forward pass had been legalized. There weren't a lot of kids over 200 lbs, even on the OL and DL, and WR were essentially outside blockers for pitches and option runs. So from a skills standpoint, even if we had the physical traits to play D1 football (we didn't), we didn't have any coaching or teaching of skills that would be required to play college ball. Of all the kids I went to school with, which would be like 9 or 10 graduating classes or about 3000 kids, exactly one played D1 football (at Syracuse). And were a Class A school, so that wasn't the issue. So prior to the mid-80s, was there a higher percentage of NY HS kids that played high level college football?

I looked at my senior year (gah) and without having to look it up on offense at least Reagan, Adams, Walker, Gedney were dudes that don't seem to exist in quantities today. And those guys could play with anyone.
 
I hear ya. My point is simply that we have to deal with reality. NYS HS football stinks at producing P5 talent, particularly relative to its population. That's just an "is". And it hasn't been good for decades.

If that's an insurmountable obstacle then SU should downgrade football, and I mean that sincerely.

When SU was good in the 90s we pulled a lot of talent from PA, NJ and the DMV. That talent is still there. We've just had a series of crummy coaches who can't go get it. And now thanks to NIL we have the avenue to grab talent from more far flung places. We need a coach who can do that too.

Our NY Class A size HS runs a wishbone. Then I turn on ESPN and I watch two HS teams from (Texas, Georgia, Florida) and it looks like I'm watching a college game. Shotgun, spread offense, throw the ball around. It's a waste of time to recruit NY.

Buffalo has some prospects. Downstate has some prospects. Recruit those kids but after that go where the talent is.

Personally I think it's smart to hammer NJ, and Pennsylvania where there is good talent and parents can have a reasonably easy drive to see their kids play. After that I would target from DMV/MD/VA to Florida. The conference footprint. For many parents (and kids) it's important to be able to see the kids play in person and if you can get a game or two where the kid is from that's huge.
 
Last edited:
Genuine question...was it ever good? My knowledge and history of NYS HS football only goes back to the late 80s when I played in Section 4. I left NY in the mid-90s, so I don't know what it's like now, but when I played it seemed none of the coaches in Section 4 were aware that the forward pass had been legalized. There weren't a lot of kids over 200 lbs, even on the OL and DL, and WR were essentially outside blockers for pitches and option runs. So from a skills standpoint, even if we had the physical traits to play D1 football (we didn't), we didn't have any coaching or teaching of skills that would be required to play college ball. Of all the kids I went to school with, which would be like 9 or 10 graduating classes or about 3000 kids, exactly one played D1 football (at Syracuse). And were a Class A school, so that wasn't the issue. So prior to the mid-80s, was there a higher percentage of NY HS kids that played high level college football?
We may have patrolled some of the same fields= Section 4, 1986 and 87, Class B school. Well, I at least warmed up on the fields. Our O-line had maybe 2 guys over 200 pounds. We put the footballs away in November and that was it other than weight room for those who were into it. A good passing game was a QB going 6-9 for 73 yards. But we had some great RB's in the area. I agree with you- so much of it is coaching and culture. Similar sized schools in southeast and western PA were and still are so much more sophisticated than even the most dominant section 4 schools, even now, based on my game-watches. That said, I think football in Section 4 is a little better, and now that it seems the forward pass is here to stay, some schools have adapted to it.

I played against and with Ivy and Patriot level kids, probably a lot of D3 level, and some D2. No D1, and I can count those I-AA kids on one hand. U-E had several D-1 players in the mid-late 80s, SU had some Elmira-Corning kids- LeBaron and Grosvenor were starters. Oliver from Delhi played at BC and I think briefly in the NFL. There hasn't been much else out of Section 4 that I have been aware of since Jared Kimmel of Harpursville at SU and Stanton from Walton in the late 90s or early 00's. Daquan Jones of JC at Penn State, Korutz (JC) and Palmer (M-E) at BC, and of course the U-E Jones brothers at SU were the only P5 kids, although Forks and M-E have each had one kid play at Army.

Granted it's one small-school dominated region of NY, but it's close to SU. Even the Rochester, Buffalo, and Albany metros aren't football hotbeds. Syracuse needs a strong local base, because the football brand isn't going to make a lot of noise in other areas with its current status.
 
Our NY Class A size HS runs a wishbone. Then I turn on ESPN and I watch two HS teams from (Texas, Georgia, Florida) and it looks like I'm watching a college game. Shotgun, spread offense, throw the ball around. It's a waste of time to recruit NY.

Buffalo has some prospects. Downstate has some prospects. Recruit those kids but after that go where the talent is.

Personally I think it's smart to hammer NJ, and Pennsylvania where there is good talent and parents can have a reasonably easy drive to see their kids play. After that I would target from DMV/MD/VA to Florida. The conference footprint. For many parents (and kids) it's important to be able to see the kids play in person and if you can get a game or two where the kid is from that's huge.
I agree. It's funny that the biggest reason why Pitt got into the ACC over UConn was because FSU/Clemson, etc. wanted access to western PA recruiting. We should live there, and even if we get the scraps it's 10X better than anything in NY.

I think our extended recruiting footprint in the ACC is fine. Just drive south on I-81 and I-95 for 400 miles, essentially.

Accessible for parents, and loaded with P5 talent.
 
Our NY Class A size HS runs a wishbone. Then I turn on ESPN and I watch two HS teams from (Texas, Georgia, Florida) and it looks like I'm watching a college game. Shotgun, spread offense, throw the ball around. It's a waste of time to recruit NY.

Buffalo has some prospects. Downstate has some prospects. Recruit those kids but after that go where the talent is.

Personally I think it's smart to hammer NJ, and Pennsylvania where there is good talent and parents can have a reasonably easy drive to see their kids play. After that I would target from DMV/MD/VA to Florida. The conference footprint. For many parents (and kids) it's important to be able to see the kids play in person and if you can get a game or two where the kid is from that's huge.
Rochester / Buffalo is worth the time IF we can get results
 
Genuine question...was it ever good? My knowledge and history of NYS HS football only goes back to the late 80s when I played in Section 4. I left NY in the mid-90s, so I don't know what it's like now, but when I played it seemed none of the coaches in Section 4 were aware that the forward pass had been legalized. There weren't a lot of kids over 200 lbs, even on the OL and DL, and WR were essentially outside blockers for pitches and option runs. So from a skills standpoint, even if we had the physical traits to play D1 football (we didn't), we didn't have any coaching or teaching of skills that would be required to play college ball. Of all the kids I went to school with, which would be like 9 or 10 graduating classes or about 3000 kids, exactly one played D1 football (at Syracuse). And were a Class A school, so that wasn't the issue. So prior to the mid-80s, was there a higher percentage of NY HS kids that played high level college football?
Parents of lacrosse players will tell you that all the great athletes are playing lacrosse
 
Rochester / Buffalo is worth the time IF we can get results
The difficulty with Buffalo location. Although geographically near Syracuse, it's more like the east end of the Midwest. Ohio State and Pitt have had better success in Buffalo than Syracuse.
SU was successful with Rashard Perry, so maybe the team is making inroads.
 
Parents of lacrosse players will tell you that all the great athletes are playing lacrosse

Well they are elite athletes as are any division 1 athletes.

Can't speak to the OLine and DLine prospects because nobody 300lbs plays lacrosse, but this is UAlbany's Lacrosse roster and the NY kids. When you see the sizes of these kids is it a stretch to think there would be more Division 1 football players in NY if they were all devoted to playing football year round from age 5 to age 18?

It's like having Justin Barron and Alijah Clark running around with a stick. These kids can get after it.

Wil PepeD6'5
215​
Watervliet, N.Y. / Shaker
Parker WinkkyA6'5
220​
Horseheads, N.Y. / Horseheads
Dillon MehtaM6'4
185​
Farmingdale, N.Y. / Farmingdale
Connor FundisD6'3
205​
Fairport, N.Y. / Fairport
T.J. McNicholasLSM6'2
190​
Rockville Centre, N.Y. / South Side
Sam StrattonD6'2
205​
Fayetteville, N.Y. / Fayetteville-Manlius
Jacob MoranM6'2
210​
Central Square, N.Y. / Central Square
Darien LaPietroM6'2
200​
Burnt Hills, N.Y. / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Conlon CrowleyD6'1
185​
Vestal, N.Y. / Vestal
Conner FingarM6'1
200​
Penn Yan, N.Y. / Penn Yan Academy
Austin OppenheimFO6'1
195​
Mount Sinai, N.Y. / Mount Sinai
Alex PfeifferM6'1
183​
Lake Grove, N.Y. / Sachem North
Connor GerlachD6'1
200​
Goshen, N.Y. / Don Bosco
James ReidM6'1
182​
Central Islip, N.Y. / Sachem North
Kevin CarneyA6'0
180​
Schenectady / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Amos WhitcombA6'0
220​
Salamanca, N.Y. / Salamanca
Patrick MaiM6'0
175​
Islip, N.Y. / Islip
CJ SchwarzFO5'11
185​
West Islip, N.Y. / West Islip
Joey CarinoM5'11
212​
Somers, N.Y. / Archbishop Stepinac
Timmy VineGK5'11
186​
Lindenhurst, N.Y. / Lindenhurst
John PrizziM5'11
173​
Kingston, N.Y. / Kingston
Jackson PalumbA5'11
205​
East Syracuse, N.Y. / East Syracuse-Minoa
Caeden LaPietroM5'11
175​
Burnt Hills, N.Y. / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Tyler ShookM5'10
185​
West Islip, N.Y. / West Islip
Regan EndresFO5'9
175​
Farmington, N.Y. / Victor
Jack VanValkenburghGK5'9
160​
Syracuse, N.Y. / Fayetteville-Manlius
Jake PisenoLSM5'8
180​
Liverpool, N.Y. / Liverpool
Jezayd HallFO5'4
165​
Mastic, N.Y. / William Floyd
 
Well they are elite athletes as are any division 1 athletes.

Can't speak to the OLine and DLine prospects because nobody 300lbs plays lacrosse, but this is UAlbany's Lacrosse roster and the NY kids. When you see the sizes of these kids is it a stretch to think there would be more Division 1 football players in NY if they were all devoted to playing football year round from age 5 to age 18?

It's like having Justin Barron and Alijah Clark running around with a stick. These kids can get after it.

Wil PepeD6'5
215​
Watervliet, N.Y. / Shaker
Parker WinkkyA6'5
220​
Horseheads, N.Y. / Horseheads
Dillon MehtaM6'4
185​
Farmingdale, N.Y. / Farmingdale
Connor FundisD6'3
205​
Fairport, N.Y. / Fairport
T.J. McNicholasLSM6'2
190​
Rockville Centre, N.Y. / South Side
Sam StrattonD6'2
205​
Fayetteville, N.Y. / Fayetteville-Manlius
Jacob MoranM6'2
210​
Central Square, N.Y. / Central Square
Darien LaPietroM6'2
200​
Burnt Hills, N.Y. / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Conlon CrowleyD6'1
185​
Vestal, N.Y. / Vestal
Conner FingarM6'1
200​
Penn Yan, N.Y. / Penn Yan Academy
Austin OppenheimFO6'1
195​
Mount Sinai, N.Y. / Mount Sinai
Alex PfeifferM6'1
183​
Lake Grove, N.Y. / Sachem North
Connor GerlachD6'1
200​
Goshen, N.Y. / Don Bosco
James ReidM6'1
182​
Central Islip, N.Y. / Sachem North
Kevin CarneyA6'0
180​
Schenectady / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Amos WhitcombA6'0
220​
Salamanca, N.Y. / Salamanca
Patrick MaiM6'0
175​
Islip, N.Y. / Islip
CJ SchwarzFO5'11
185​
West Islip, N.Y. / West Islip
Joey CarinoM5'11
212​
Somers, N.Y. / Archbishop Stepinac
Timmy VineGK5'11
186​
Lindenhurst, N.Y. / Lindenhurst
John PrizziM5'11
173​
Kingston, N.Y. / Kingston
Jackson PalumbA5'11
205​
East Syracuse, N.Y. / East Syracuse-Minoa
Caeden LaPietroM5'11
175​
Burnt Hills, N.Y. / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Tyler ShookM5'10
185​
West Islip, N.Y. / West Islip
Regan EndresFO5'9
175​
Farmington, N.Y. / Victor
Jack VanValkenburghGK5'9
160​
Syracuse, N.Y. / Fayetteville-Manlius
Jake PisenoLSM5'8
180​
Liverpool, N.Y. / Liverpool
Jezayd HallFO5'4
165​
Mastic, N.Y. / William Floyd
Casey Rogers, DL Nebraska / Oregon

Lax player originally committed to Rutgers (I think?) (or was that only TJ Conley who.committed to Rutgers?)

6'5 304
 
Well they are elite athletes as are any division 1 athletes.

Can't speak to the OLine and DLine prospects because nobody 300lbs plays lacrosse, but this is UAlbany's Lacrosse roster and the NY kids. When you see the sizes of these kids is it a stretch to think there would be more Division 1 football players in NY if they were all devoted to playing football year round from age 5 to age 18?

It's like having Justin Barron and Alijah Clark running around with a stick. These kids can get after it.

Wil PepeD6'5
215​
Watervliet, N.Y. / Shaker
Parker WinkkyA6'5
220​
Horseheads, N.Y. / Horseheads
Dillon MehtaM6'4
185​
Farmingdale, N.Y. / Farmingdale
Connor FundisD6'3
205​
Fairport, N.Y. / Fairport
T.J. McNicholasLSM6'2
190​
Rockville Centre, N.Y. / South Side
Sam StrattonD6'2
205​
Fayetteville, N.Y. / Fayetteville-Manlius
Jacob MoranM6'2
210​
Central Square, N.Y. / Central Square
Darien LaPietroM6'2
200​
Burnt Hills, N.Y. / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Conlon CrowleyD6'1
185​
Vestal, N.Y. / Vestal
Conner FingarM6'1
200​
Penn Yan, N.Y. / Penn Yan Academy
Austin OppenheimFO6'1
195​
Mount Sinai, N.Y. / Mount Sinai
Alex PfeifferM6'1
183​
Lake Grove, N.Y. / Sachem North
Connor GerlachD6'1
200​
Goshen, N.Y. / Don Bosco
James ReidM6'1
182​
Central Islip, N.Y. / Sachem North
Kevin CarneyA6'0
180​
Schenectady / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Amos WhitcombA6'0
220​
Salamanca, N.Y. / Salamanca
Patrick MaiM6'0
175​
Islip, N.Y. / Islip
CJ SchwarzFO5'11
185​
West Islip, N.Y. / West Islip
Joey CarinoM5'11
212​
Somers, N.Y. / Archbishop Stepinac
Timmy VineGK5'11
186​
Lindenhurst, N.Y. / Lindenhurst
John PrizziM5'11
173​
Kingston, N.Y. / Kingston
Jackson PalumbA5'11
205​
East Syracuse, N.Y. / East Syracuse-Minoa
Caeden LaPietroM5'11
175​
Burnt Hills, N.Y. / Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake
Tyler ShookM5'10
185​
West Islip, N.Y. / West Islip
Regan EndresFO5'9
175​
Farmington, N.Y. / Victor
Jack VanValkenburghGK5'9
160​
Syracuse, N.Y. / Fayetteville-Manlius
Jake PisenoLSM5'8
180​
Liverpool, N.Y. / Liverpool
Jezayd HallFO5'4
165​
Mastic, N.Y. / William Floyd
I doubt it. Maybe Chris Hogan is in there.
 

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