5-star question: Which SEC programs have been best at developing elite talent?

T.G. Paschal/BamaCentral

Crimson Tide easily tops league for most 5-star players drafted and selected in first round during the Nick Saban era

It’s one thing to land a top recruit, but it’s another to turn him into a high-level pro prospect.

Just because a player was considered outstanding at the high school level doesn’t mean that it’ll translate to the college or pro level.

Being designated a 5-star prospect means being considered the elite of the elite. However, it doesn’t guarantee anything.

Players get injured, make bad choices or don’t continue to develop. Nowadays, a lot of them transfer, especially at the quarterback position.

A good example is Alabama’s recruiting Class of 2016, during which Nick Saban landed three players who were hailed as being consensus 5-star talents.

Linebacker Ben Davis, who was considered the consensus No. 10 player in the nation per the 247Sports composite rankings, has yet to make an impact with the Crimson Tide. Linebacker Mack Wilson, the No. 16 player, left early for the NFL after a sub-par season and fell to the fifth round.

Offensive lineman Jonah Williams, the No. 17 prospect, was the No. 11 pick in the 2019 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals.

During the Nick Saban era, Alabama’s been better at landing 5-star players in the NFL than just about any program in college football, but even the Crimson Tide has been far from perfect.

Overall, out of the 386 recruits who were designated as being a 5-star talent since 2008, nearly half signed with an SEC school (177, 45.8 percent). Among them, 45 are still active with the same team so that leaves a possible 132 who could have been selected in the NFL draft.

Among them, 76 were drafted, or 57.6 percent.

Just 35 were selected in the first round, or 26.5 percent.

If you think that percentage is low, it’s actually high. Very high. It only helps put the following numbers into perspective:

Alabama’s percentages are 72.2% drafted, and 41.7% selected in the first round.

Those figures include the recent departure of sophomore linebacker Eyabi Anoma, who entered the NCAA transfer portal this week. If he was in the mix, Alabama would be at 74 and 43 percent, respectively.

Here’s how the Crimson Tide stacks up against the rest of the SEC during that time period, but note the following:

  • Any player who left his program and was still drafted from another team doesn’t count toward his original school.
  • Ole Miss is listed at the end due to NCAA sanctions.
  • Every other SEC team has had at least one coaching change since Saban arrived in Alabama in 2007.
  • Florida’s numbers are largely reflective of the Urban Meyer years (through 2010). The Gators haven’t landed a consensus 5-star talent since 2015.
  • The only SEC programs that haven’t signed a consensus 5-star player since 2008 are Kentucky and Vanderbilt.
  • The player listings status includes which round he was drafted and year. A blank status indicates the player wasn't drafted.

SEC 5-Star Draft picks

Minimum five players

Program, Total, Active, Drafted, Percentage

Alabama 47 11 26 72.2

Florida 20 0 12 60.0

Georgia 36 14 13 59.1

LSU 22 7 6 40.0

Texas A&M 12 2 4 40.0

Tennessee 8 3 2 40.0

Auburn 12 3 2 22.2

Ole Miss 9 2 4 (57.1)

SEC 5-Star First-round selections

Minimum 5 players

Program, Total, Active, First-round, Percentage

Alabama 47 11 15 41.7

Florida 20 0 6 30.0

LSU 22 7 3 20.0

Tennessee 8 3 1 20.0

Georgia 36 14 3 13.6

Texas A&M 12 2 1 10.0

Auburn 12 3 0 0.0

Ole Miss 9 2 3 (42.9)

SEC consensus 5-star players (2008-present)

Year, Overall ranking, Name, Position, Status

Alabama

2019 5 Antonio Alfano SDE (active)

2019 6 Trey Sanders RB (active)

2019 7 Evan Neal OT (active)

2018 4 Eyabi Anoma WDE Transferred

2018 6 Patrick Surtain II CB (active)

2017 2 Najee Harris RB (active)

2017 4 Alex Leatherwood OT (active)

2017 13 Dylan Moses OLB (active)

2017 21 Jerry Jeudy WR (active)

2017 28 LaBryan Ray SDE (active)

2017 32 Tua Tagovailoa DUAL (active)

2016 10 Ben Davis ILB (active)

2016 16 Mack Wilson OLB Drafted 5 2019

2016 17 Jonah Williams OT Drafted 1 2019

2015 12 Calvin Ridley WR Drafted 1 2018

2015 20 Kendall Sheffield CB Transferred

2015 22 Blake Barnett PRO Transferred

2015 29 Da’Ron Payne DT Drafted 1 2018

2015 30 Minkah Fitzpatrick CB Drafted 1 2018

2015 31 Damien Harris RB Drafted 3 2019

2014 4 Cam Robinson OT Drafted 2 2017

2014 5 Da'Shawn Hand SDE Drafted 4 2018

2014 9 Tony Brown CB

2014 11 Marlon Humphrey CB Drafted 1 2017

2014 14 Rashaan Evans OLB Drafted 1 2018

2014 16 Bo Scarbrough ATH Drafted 7 2018

2013 6 Reuben Foster ILB Drafted 1 2017

2013 12 Derrick Henry ATH Drafted 2 2016

2013 15 Jonathan Allen OLB Drafted 1 2017

2013 19 O.J. Howard TE Drafted 1 2017

2013 23 Robert Foster WR

2013 31 A'Shawn Robinson OT Drafted 2 2016

2012 7 Landon Collins S Drafted 2 2015

2012 17 Eddie Williams ATH

2012 27 T.J. Yeldon RB Drafted 2 2015

2011 2 Cyrus Kouandjio OT Drafted 2 2014

2011 7 Ha Ha Clinton-Dix S Drafted 1 2014

2011 30 Trey DePriest ILB

2010 14 Dee Milliner CB Drafted 1 2013

2010 31 Phillip Sims PRO Transferred

2009 6 Trent Richardson RB Drafted 1 2012

2009 14 Dre Kirkpatrick CB Drafted 1 2012

2009 17 Nico Johnson ILB Drafted 4 2013

2009 30 D.J. Fluker OT Drafted 1 2013

2008 3 Julio Jones WR Drafted 1 2011

2008 23 Tyler Love OT

2008 27 B.J. Scott CB Transferred

Georgia

2019 1 Nolan Smith WDE (active)

2019 19 Nakobe Dean ILB (active)

2019 22 Travon Walker DT (active)

2019 24 George Pickens WR (active)

2019 26 Clay Webb C (active)

2018 2 Justin Fields DUAL Transferred

2018 9 Zamir White RB (active)

2018 10 Jamaree Salyer OG (active)

2018 12 Tyson Campbell CB (active)

2018 18 Adam Anderson OLB (active)

2018 22 Cade Mays OT (active)

2018 23 Brenton Cox SDE (active)

2017 16 Isaiah Wilson OT (active)

2017 25 Richard LeCounte III S (active)

2017 33 D'Andre Swift RB (active)

2016 5 Jacob Eason PRO Transferred

2016 12 Mecole Hardman ATH Drafted 2 2019

2016 14 Isaac Nauta TE Drafted 7 2019

2015 1 Trenton Thompson DT

2015 27 Terry Godwin ATH Drafted 7 2019

2014 18 Lorenzo Carter WDE Drafted 3 2018

2014 20 Sony Michel RB Drafted 1 2018

2014 33 Nick Chubb RB Drafted 2 2018

2012 13 Keith Marshall APB Drafted 7 2016

2012 15 John Theus OT Drafted 5 2016

2012 22 Josh Harvey-Clemons OLB Transferred

2012 34 Jordan Jenkins WDE Drafted 3 2016

2011 6 Isaiah Crowell RB

2011 18 Ray Drew SDE

2010 19 Alec Ogletree ILB Drafted 1 2013

2009 18 Branden Smith CB

2009 19 Aaron Murray DUAL Drafted 5 2014

2009 27 Marlon Brown WR

2008 7 A.J. Green WR Drafted 1 2011

2008 18 Richard Samuel RB

2008 28 DeAngelo Tyson DT Drafted 7 2012

LSU

2019 3 Derek Stingley CB (active)

2019 13 John Emery Jr. RB (active)

2019 32 Marcel Brooks OLB (active)

2018 13 Terrace Marshall WR (active)

2018 18 JaCoby Stevens S (active)

2016 22 Kristian Fulton CB (active)

2016 23 Rashard Lawrence DT (active)

2015 9 Kevin Toliver II CB

2015 28 Tyron Johnson WR Transferred

2015 37 Maea Teuhema OG Transferred

2014 1 Leonard Fournette RB Drafted 1 2017

2014 17 Malachi Dupre WR Drafted 7 2017

2014 29 Clifton Garrett OLB

2014 32 Jamal Adams S Drafted 1 2017

2012 3 La'el Collins OT

2011 5 Anthony Johnson DT

2011 15 Jarvis Landry WR Drafted 2 2014

2009 3 Russell Shepard DUAL

2009 8 Rueben Randle WR Drafted 2 2012

2009 9 Craig Loston S

2009 29 Chris Davenport DT Transferred

2008 6 Patrick Peterson CB Drafted 1 2011

Florida

2015 2 Martez Ivey OT

2015 7 CeCe Jefferson SDE

2014 15 Teez Tabor CB Drafted 2 2017

2013 3 Vernon Hargreaves III CB Drafted 1 2016

2013 21 Kelvin Taylor RB Drafted 6 2016

2012 3 D.J. Humphries OT Drafted 1 2015

2012 12 Jonathan Bullard SDE Drafted 3 2016

2012 36 Dante Fowler WDE Drafted 1 2015

2011 17 Jeff Driskel DUAL Transferred

2010 1 Ronald Powell WDE Drafted 5 2014

2010 4 Dominique Easley DT Drafted 1 2014

2010 6 Sharrif Floyd SDE Drafted 1 2013

2010 16 Matt Elam S Drafted 1 2013

2010 22 Josh Shaw CB Transferred

2009 7 Jelani Jenkins OLB Drafted 4 2013

2009 10 Gary Brown DT

2009 15 Andre Debose WR Drafted 7 2015

2009 21 Xavier Nixon OT

2008 5 Will Hill S

2008 17 Omar Hunter DT

Auburn

2019 25 Owen Pappoe OLB (active)

2019 33 Bo Nix DUAL (active)

2017 26 Calvin Ashley OT Transferred

2016 9 Derrick Brown DT (active)

2015 3 Byron Cowart SDE Transferred

2014 23 Roc Thomas RB Transferred

2014 27 Tre' Williams ILB

2013 10 Montravius Adams DT Drafted 3 2017

2013 22 Carl Lawson WDE Drafted 4 2017

2011 10 Christian Westerman OT Transferred

2010 8 Michael Dyer RB Transferred

2010 25 Trovon Reed ATH

Texas A&M

2019 15 Kenyon Green OT (active)

2019 16 DeMarvin Leal DT (active)

2015 14 Daylon Mack DT Drafted 5 2019

2015 25 Christian Kirk WR Drafted 2 2018

2015 34 Kyler Murray DUAL Transferred

2014 2 Myles Garrett WDE Drafted 1 2017

2014 8 Kyle Allen PRO Transferred

2014 10 Speedy Noil WR

2013 24 Ricky Seals-Jones ATH

2012 18 Trey Williams APB

2012 33 Thomas Johnson WR

2009 22 Christine Michael RB Drafted 2 2013

Ole Miss

2019 29 Jerrion Ealy RB (active)

2016 3 Greg Little OT Drafted 2 2019

2016 4 Shea Patterson PRO Transferred

2016 25 Benito Jones DT (active)

2013 1 Robert Nkemdiche SDE Drafted 1 2016

2013 4 Laremy Tunsil OT Drafted 1 2016

2013 14 Laquon Treadwell WR Drafted 1 2016

2013 33 Tony Conner S

2012 35 Channing Ward WDE

Tennessee

2019 10 Darnell Wright OT (active)

2019 28 Wanya Morris OT (active)

2017 14 Trey Smith OT (active)

2015 6 Kahlil McKenzie DT Drafted 6 2018

2015 36 Kyle Phillips SDE

2010 15 Da'Rick Rogers WR

2010 28 Ja'Wuan James OT Drafted 1 2014

2009 2 Bryce Brown RB Transferred

Mississippi State

2019 27 Charles Cross OT (active)

2016 18 Jeffery Simmons SDE Drafted 1 2019

2013 18 Chris Jones SDE Drafted 2 2016

Missouri

2015 13 Terry Beckner Jr. DT Drafted 7 2019

2012 1 Dorial Green-Beckham WR Drafted 2 2015

2009 28 Sheldon Richardson DT Drafted 1 2013

South Carolina

2019 8 Zacch Pickens DT (active)

2011 1 Jadeveon Clowney WDE Drafted 1 2014

2010 9 Marcus Lattimore APB Drafted 4 2013

Arkansas

2016 20 McTelvin Agim SDE (active)

2009 24 Darius Winston CB

This is the third story in a database series appearing this week on BamaCentral. For background information, check out a previous story for the website SEC Country.

Which program has signed the most elite players since 2008?

Which programs have the most elite players on the 2019 roster?

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