Are you an NFL draft fan? Do you watch it each year and plan your time around the television? Do you follow the proceedings online and read all the analysis afterward?
If you’re an SEC football fan, you should.
There’s no question that NFL scouts scour the entire nation for future Pro Bowlers. They select players from big programs and small, the successful and the unsuccessful.
But when it comes to the SEC there’s a direct connection between a program’s success and it’s ability to produce draftable football players. That makes sense, only I wouldn’t have guessed that it would make such perfect sense.
Below you’ll see the SEC’s programs listed by the number of total draft picks they’ve produced between 2001 and 2010. Beside those numbers are each school’s record, winning percentage and SEC titles won between 2000 and 2009 (the seasons that correspond to the 01-10 drafts).
Notice how precisely the winning percentages and the number of NFL selections correlate.
I was amazed at how closely the results on the field matched the results on draft day. Those teams (except Tennessee) that produced 50+ picks all won right around 75% of their games… and they each won multiple SEC titles.
Alabama and Auburn produced 30+ picks and both won an SEC crown. Auburn won at a near 70% clip which gives a lot of credence to the idea that Tommy Tuberville knew how to “coach players up.”
Those schools churning out 20+ prospects all won in the 50% range. And those that produced fewer than 20 all won between about 30-40%.
So you might want to start looking at early 2011 draft projections. They might give you some idea as to who’ll be best in line for success this fall.