One of the major takeaways for the 2017 recruiting cycle is how well Georgia has recruited this year, especially when looking at the class compared to the rest of the SEC East. In second-year head coach Kirby Smart’s first true class, he not only put together the nation’s No. 3 overall class, he has one that single-handedly dominated the Eastern division.
The Dawgs’ 2017 class is absolutely loaded with four and five-star recruits, with almost as many blue-chips as the rest of the division combined. This year, Georgia signed a whopping 20 blue-chips. The rest of the SEC East? It had a total of 26.
Let’s compare this year to the ones dating back to 2012, the first year with the newly expanded SEC East featuring Missouri.
As you can also see in this chart below, Tennessee and Florida have also done well in the past. But Georgia’s 2017 cleaned up.
In the below chart, the Ratio represents the ratio of UGA blue-chips to the rest of the SEC East's combined. Typically, the division has around three times as many blue-chips as Georgia. This year, Georgia had almost an equal 1:1 ratio.
UGA blue-chips vs. the SEC East
|Ratio of UGA blue chips vs East||1.3||2.4||2.8||3.5||2.1||3.8|
|Rest of SEC East Combined||26||31||39||46||32||38|
Georgia’s early-enrollee class also ended up being quite impressive, consisting of four four-stars and one five-star, in safety Richard LeCounte III.
The Bulldogs finished second in the SEC overall behind Alabama, which had the No. 1 overall class.
The rest of the SEC East? Not so great, for the most part. The second-best class in the division was Florida, which finished 10th, followed by Tennessee and South Carolina in the top 25.
In 2012 and 2013, Florida finished inside the top five nationally and first in the division. Tennessee had the upper hand in the East in 2014 and 2015. In the last two seasons, Georgia has reversed that trend, finishing first in the East in both 2016 and 2017.
Georgia finished this cycle with a 247Sports Composite class score of 301, topping any class by an SEC East school in more than half a decade. It’s also the highest score ever for a Georgia class in the years tracked by the Composite, going back to 2000.
SEC East class scores
What’s equally impressive is how well Smart has been able to get commitments from in-state recruits. In total, Georgia’s 2017 class is made up of 26 members; 18 are from the state of Georgia alone, including 16 blue-chips. Smart has been able to successfully recruit the state of Georgia stronger than Mark Richt did during final years in Athens, it appears.