In college football, the Southeastern Conference (SEC) reigns supreme, consistently producing the top teams in the NCAA and the deepest talent pool for the NFL.
Statements like this are frequently referred to as the “SEC bias,” which is responsible for skewing the national rankings and the opportunities for teams outside of the SEC to have a shot at the national championship game.
But the facts speak for themselves, as a team from the SEC has won seven-straight national championship games. That’s the reason why advertising dollars and the national television audiences focus on SEC football, which in turn grants more exposure to the programs and players.
This exposure pays off when it is time for the annual NFL Draft, as prospects that played in high-profile bowl games have an easier time catching the eye of talent evaluators. Think that doesn’t make a difference? It turns out that 63-of-254 picks–or a full quarter of the 2013 NFL Draft–were used on players from the SEC.
The Redskins fell in line with the NFL average, spending two-of-seven picks on SEC players: Florida tight end Jordan Reed and Georgia safety Bacarri Rambo. But this was an unusual draft for the Washington front office under head coach Mike Shanahan and general manager Bruce Allen.
Since 2010, the Redskins have selected only four-of-34 draft picks from an SEC program. Here are some more facts:
–The first ever SEC player selected by Shanahan in Washington was inside linebacker Perry Riley, LSU, 103rd overall pick in 2010.
–The second SEC player was not selected until offensive guard Maurice Hurt, Florida, 217th overall pick in 2011.
–The Redskins did not select an SEC player at all in 2012.
–Tight end Jordan Reed, Florida, is the highest Shanahan & Co. have ever drafted an SEC player in Washington (85th overall).
–Safety Bacarri Rambo, Georgia, represents the first time Shanahan & Co. have taken two SEC players in the same draft.
During head coach Mike Shanahan’s tenure in Washington, the Redskins have scoured the nation for talent, selecting from 11 different college football conferences. The SEC ranks fourth with four selections:
|Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC)||6|
|Southeastern Conference (SEC)||4|
|Conference USA (C-USA)||3|
|Mountain West Conference (MWC)||2|
|Western Athletic Conference (WAC)||2|
So for football fans that bemoan the SEC bias and fall of parity in college football, fear not; the Redskins front office is doing their due diligence. The Redskins are searching under every stone from the SEC to the Sun Belt, on a quest for the best professional football roster possible.