November 23, 2009

Talent pool: Where does the talent come from?

MORE: Greatest State Debate Finals | Rank the states 1-50 | Top 100 HS football teams

Dallas Jackson is the high school sports expert for RivalsHigh.com. Send him a question or comment at DallasJ@Yahoo-Inc.com and follow him at twitter.com/rivalshigh.

Our quest to determine which state is best for high school football continues - mainly because the e-mails about our efforts continue to pour in.

First, there was the RivalsHigh Greatest State Debate, our own tournament creation.

Then, there were my personal rankings.

But still, the e-mails persist.

How can you not rate California higher? It produces the most D1 players, our readers write.

Our readers are right on that point.

But my continued analysis that the Golden State is a bit down remains accurate. Here's why: Much of California's success comes from its huge population base.

California produced the third-highest number of signees in 2009. But when you average the number of signees against the number of participants, California's success rate goes way down.

At just one signee for every 438 players, it doesn't even make the top 15 states for producing talent.

Is that you laughing Texas? I hope not. You're just two spots ahead of California. And both of you are below Hawaii, Nevada and Utah.

These rankings were created by dividing the number of D1 signees in the Rivals.com database into the number of participants in the sport, according to the National Federation of High School Sports participation survey.

Not buying it? Think these rankings must be flawed? Think again. Traditional high school strongholds Georgia, Louisiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania all fared well, ranking above California and Texas.

As did Florida.

Hate to break it to you California and Texas - but in these rankings, Florida is No. 1. The Sunshine State's number is amazing as it produced one D1 signee for every 127 participants.

As with our previous rankings, it is open to interpretation and debate. So send us an e-mail... or post on the board.

Class of 2009 Signees Per Participant
StateNo. of PlayersNo. of Division I signeesOne signee in every...
Florida40456319127
Louisiana1252087144
Hawaii495527184
Georgia32209162199
Oklahoma1141555208
Maryland/DC1614562260
Nevada659423287
Utah787627292
Alabama2228374301
Virginia2586476340
Ohio55392157353
Pennsylvania2691076354
South Carolina1861747396
Texas160893390413
North Carolina2917967436
California104224238438
Delaware31937456
Mississippi2230248465
Tennessee2287548477
Arkansas1200024500
Kentucky1384226532
New Jersey2762351542
Arizona1892034557
Indiana2324141567
Colorado1400024667
Michigan4525762730
Illinois5095660849
Missouri2443328873
Connecticut1062912886
New Hampshire37534938
Idaho76108951
Washington1939620970
Kansas14518141037
West Virginia653451307
Nebraska1089281362
Wyoming277821389
Oregon13992101399
Iowa20316141451
New York38354221743
New Mexico743041858
Alaska195811958
Wisconsin30823142202
Massachusetts2078992310
Minnesota26018102602
North Dakota300713007
Montana487514875
Vermont15020--
Rhode Island29500--
South Dakota38570--
Maine41480--

-- Brandon Risner contributed to this report


 

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