Student Sports asked over 2,000 high school football players what would be their first choice as their College Football team to play for, and ended up producing some surprising results, which place the Florida Gators and the Oregon Ducks as the most popular programs among future prospects.
It shouldn’t be that surprising, especially if you’re asking Florida kids, who seem to be the most talented in the country when it comes to high school football, but still, it’s been a few years since the Gators won two national championships, and haven’t been able to dominate or even win the SEC East for the last few seasons.
Oregon is a different matter. This isn’t a school with a long tradition of success and championships. In fact, it seems the last few years have been the best in the history of the program, winning two consecutive BCS Bowl games under Chip Kelly prior to losing two in a row. The Nike connection and the awesome helmets and outfit don’t seem to hurt as well.
The rest of the survey might be a bit more surprising, with schools like California and Stanford ranking in the top 10. In fact, all four major California schools ranked higher than either Texas and Oklahoma, which might tell us something about the prospect of playing in Los Angeles being much better than being in the creme de la creme of the Big-12, or at least how it sounds to teenagers.
The Big Ten, as some would expect, has taken a lot of hits in recent years, which doesn’t make it a very appealing destination to most high school football players. The weather obviously doesn’t aid in recruiting talent as well. Ohio State were the only team to get over 1% of the votes out of the conference, while schools like BYU, Boise State and Baylor finished ahead of Michigan, Wisconsin and Penn State.
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