More than 4,000 former Georgia high school players have been on college rosters this season, according to the annual research of Steve Slay, a member of the Georgia High School Football Historians Association and football fan who has tracked these numbers in Georgia for the past 10 years.
His 4,191 Georgia players on 2017 rosters are the most he's counted. They range from the 585 playing in Power 5 Conferences such as the SEC and ACC to the 372 on the rosters of junior-college teams such as the Eastern Arizona College Gila Monsters of the Western States Football League. Fun fact: There are 28 former Georgia high school players who were Gila Monsters this fall.
There also are six recently selected Associated Press All-Americans from Georgia.
Those include Oklahoma tackle Orlando Brown (Peachtree Ridge), N.C. State defensive end Bradley Chubb (Hillgrove) and Georgia linebacker Roquan Smith (Macon County), all on the first team. On the second team are Clemson tackle Mitch Hyatt (North Gwinnett) and Colorado State receiver Michael Gallup (Monroe Area). Clemson defensive end Austin Bryant (Thomas County Central) made the third team.
Which Georgia high school has produced the most current college players?
That would be McEachern in Cobb County. The Indians are now the state leader with 56 alumni on college rosters. Their players are spread from Southern Cal (Chuma Edoga) and Oregon (brothers Taj and Ty Griffin) to College Football Playoff participants Georgia (Julian Rochester and Tyler Simmons) and Clemson (Tremayne Anchrum).
"That's a good distinction," McEachern coach Kyle Hockman said. "That's a big part of what we do here, get them some money to go to school. And we're blessed to have a lot of good kids."
McEachern has an assistant coach, Bryan Jacobson, who is dedicated to college recruiting. He corresponds with coaches and sends video, transcripts and test scores, among other things. It's almost year-round.
"We work pretty hard at it," Hockman said. "We spend as much time on a kid that's going to Pikeville or Pima Community College as we do one going to UGA or Florida State. It takes a lot of effort, and not a lot of coaches want to spend that kind of time."
Stephenson, which for years had led, is now second with 52. Others with 40 or more are Buford (49), Norcross (46), Grayson (45), Sandy Creek (43), Peachtree Ridge (41) and Colquitt County (40).
Here is the breakdown of Georgia players by college division:
1,089 - FBS (formerly called Division I-A)
585 - Power 5 conferences
504 - Mid-majors and independents
873 - FCS (formerly called Division I-AA)
815 - Division II
516 - Division III
526 - NAIA
372 - JUCO
4,191 - TOTAL
Below are the numbers of college players from each GHSA school. If the totals are off, it's likely because of an error on the college roster or an omission due to red-shirting. But it's safe to say that Slay nailed more than 99 percent of them in work that has not been replicated in many states.
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