It is no secret that Kirby Smart has put together a recruiting powerhouse at UGA since he returned home from Alabama. While serving his apprenticeship under Nick Saban, the Banbridge native honed his skills and now regularly challenges his mentor on the recruiting trail.
Rivals.com National Recruiting Director Mike Farrell recently named Smart the most likely coach to win a first national title soon. Here is what Farrell had to say:
1. Kirby Smart, Georgia – Georgia has already had one chance and lost in overtime, but the way he is recruiting, he will have other chances. You can’t recruit as well as Georgia has been and be left out of the national title picture.
2. Lincoln Riley, Oklahoma – This is a tough call between Riley and Tom Herman, but Oklahoma is in slightly better shape to make a national title run before Texas is fully back.
3. Tom Herman, Texas – Herman is a great fit for the Longhorns and has them well on the way back to national prominence. The Big 12 is an interesting path to the title game because it’s always going to be either Oklahoma or Texas, at least in the short term. Texas will break through eventually.
4. Ryan Day, Ohio State – Ohio State is a juggernaut and Day can recruit and coach with the best of them so a national title is eventually in his future.
5. Jim Harbaugh, Michigan – This was a tough call between Harbaugh and Dan Mullen at Florida and this could be the wrong choice but I still think Harbaugh will put it all together one season and win it all.
Three-Point Stance: Coaches that will win a title
How has UGA managed to change it’s recruiting fortunes, seemingly, overnight? Jake Rowe of 247Sports offers suggestions:
…There are a lot of things Smart and his staff have done over the past few years that give you the impression that they fully understand everything it takes to recruit at an elite level. From the management of the number of players on the roster and in a particular signing class to the restructuring of weekend unofficial visits, what the Bulldogs are doing is working. Georgia is doing a tremendous job of signing full classes and when there are potential pitfalls with guys not qualifying, like with Devonte Wyatt and Tramel Walthour, the staff is proactive in getting them placed at a junior college and resigning them in short order. Prospects can visit when they’re available to visit and they don’t have to work around a scheduled event by the staff. UGA is also doing a really good job of making sure it has backup plans for its backup plans. All bases are covered.Why Kirby Smart, Georgia are here to stay in recruiting