During the recruiting cycle, oftentimes you see where a lot of prospects garner lot of buzz in coaching circles (states that have historically produced a plethora of talent in a single year like California, Florida, Ohio, Texas, etc.). We're going to changes things up as we highlight five states that haven't been as prolific at producing talent historically, but manage to have a lot of depth each and every year.
It's hard to believe that a state that's mostly known for being in the desert also has a knack for having a deep well of football talent, but that's the case for Arizona. It has 72 players with two stars or more per 247Sports.com, including 18 players from the same high school (Saguaro, Chandler). It is interesting to note that 52 of the 72 players are skill players, so Arizona may be the place to go if a program needs some athletes.
Idaho is an interesting case, because it doesn't have a single player in the 2021 class with four stars or more. However, the state makes up for it in sheer volume with 60 players with at least two stars. Out of the six three-star recruits in the class, five of them play on the line of scrimmage, so Idaho might be getting a reputation of cranking out tough, physical football players to the rest of the country.
It can be easy to forget about Maryland when it comes to recruiting with more prolific states surrounding it (Pennsylvania, Virginia), but there's no doubt that there's a lot of talent on the coast. 54 of the state's 63 ranked players have three stars or more, with over half of that number signing with a Power 5 team this year. If you're a player in Maryland, you have to make sure you promote yourself because the secret seems to be out on that state.
The Show-Me State only has five four-star recruits in this year's class, but it makes up for it with its depth with 28 three-star prospects. With 22 players hailing from St. Louis and another 11 more from Kansas City, it's easy to see where the football hotbeds of this state are. Only two of the top ten players in 2021 are skill players, so it may be the move for colleges to visit Missouri in the hopes of winning the line of scrimmage.
We finish with another desert state that is turns out a lot of prospects year after year. 43 of the 65 ranked prospects have three stars or more, and 22 players have signed with a Power 5 school. What's unique about Utah is how balanced the class is in terms of offensive and defensive players as well as line and skill players, so the state can have a lot of value to the country with its recruits if they do a good job getting their names out there.
Jordan Rinard is a contributing writer for GMTM and a Recruiting Editor for Hustle Belt. He will always hold onto the belief that Jim Brown is the one true GOAT.