Welcome back to another edition of Which State Produces the Best Player at Each Position! The last article we saw Florida win its third position in a row! Florida just keeps on winning and winning. Can they be stopped? Will they be stopped? Keep reading and find out!
To add numerical value to this argument, I pulled recruiting information using 247 Sports recruit ranking and Sports Reference from the last 5 years that have had draft eligible players (2015-2019). The top 50 players per position were added to the database based on the state in which they played High School football and a value was added to that state based off the number of stars they had (5 Stars = 5pts, 1 Star = 1 pt.). Then for the draft, I added ALL players drafted for that specific position and points were given based on which round they were drafted (1st Rd = 7 points ,7th Rd = 1pt).
– Athletes from Washington D.C. were put into the Virginia group.
– Athletes that may have transferred to a sports specialized school such as IMG, were included in the state of the specialized school. Too many transfers occur and it’s virtually impossible to determine why the transfer occurred.
Linebackers are the nucleus of the defense. They set the defense, they’re making pre-snap adjustments, they have to stop the run and cover receivers. This position and TE are probably the most athletic positions in all of sports in terms of height, weight, speed, and leaping ability, so finding out where these monsters grow, is of utmost importance. This data revealed itself to me quickly – the two most glaring things I found were: 1) the same area (Gulf Coast) was dominating again and 2) we had a wildcard easing its way into the winner’s circle.
The top 5 states in terms of high school prospects (without population considered) are:
1. California (115)
2. Florida (111)
3. Georgia (110)
4. Alabama (80)
5. Texas (77)
The same old states are represented here, except for Alabama and like Forest Gump said, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you always know that California, Florida, and Texas will be in the box.” (I think that’s how it goes – give or take a word or two). Here are the top 5 states in terms of NFL draftees (without population considered):
1. California (76)
2. Florida (50)
3. Alabama (43)
4. Georgia (38)
T-5. Texas (32)
Same states, different order. At this point in the number crunching, I all but knew, which state was going to win this position, but I couldn’t count my chickens before they hatched. There was more number crunching to be completed.
*CRUNCH* Oh wow! A new winner has emerged, welcome to the show Alabama. The first state in the alphabetic song we learned in school (sorry for getting it stuck in your head, but I couldn’t suffer alone after making this reference) won by the skin of their tooth (does anyone in Alabama have 32 teeth…maybe that can be my next series?) Anyway, this makes sense, the state that wins this position also has the school that puts the most LB prospects into the NFL per year over the last decade (University of Alabama). So now we know that Alabama is known for three things: 1) Linebackers 2) Forrest Gump 3) Nick Saban walking the sideline looking like the Grinch scheming to steal Christmas.
I want to thank everyone for reading this article and I really hope you enjoyed it! If you didn’t, tell me you did, and forward all of your qualms to your state senator.