Monday, June 8, 2009

Vanderbilt football recruiting in familiar position in June

Maybe you've noticed that 15 kids have already committed to play for Alabama in 2010. The count is 12 at Florida and 11 at LSU.

It's two at Vanderbilt.

But not to worry — this happens every spring and summer. See, everybody offers scholarships to the top athletes, who get to pick from schools like USC and Texas and Alabama.

So the 17-year-old kids who look like players get snatched up by the big boys. But don't worry, there will be plenty of solid guys and late bloomers left in the fall.

It's best not to get too emotionally invested in following Vandy's recruiting right now. For example, QB Andrew Hendrix and OT Matt Rotheram have offers from the Commodores and have shown interest; but both are from Ohio and are also interested in Ohio State, who I hear will continue to field a football team.

Linebacker Justin Maclin of Memphis had an offer from Vandy but he had an offer from LSU, too, and guess where he just announced he's heading.

The Commodores also like ATH Julian Horton and OT Max Garcia, both of Georgia, but Alabama likes them too. Vandy might have a decent shot at landing Horton, but I wouldn't put any money on it.

Another possibility is DT Jeremiah Jackson (above) of Spain Park, Ala. He's a really nice looking tackle prospect, and those guys are gold on the defensive side of the ball. Last season, he was a teammate of Darrius McMullin, the DT who committed to Vandy's 2009 freshman class but didn't qualify academically. But he also likes Ole Miss.

Traditionally, the top six teams on the gridiron in the SEC are Alabama, Florida, LSU, Tennessee, Auburn and Georgia, followed by South Carolina and Arkansas, then Miss State, Ole Miss, Kentucky and, alas, Vanderbilt.

Here's how SEC teams have fared with early commitments:

1. Alabama: 15
2. Florida: 12
3. LSU: 11
4. Tennessee: 8
5. Auburn: 5
6. Georgia: 4
6. South Carolina: 4
6. Arkansas: 4
6. Miss State: 4
10. Vanderbilt: 2
10. Ole Miss: 2
12. Kentucky: 1

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