College football has transformed into a billion-dollar industry and everything now is about the "brand."
While winning on the field will always be important to the success of programs, that's not all that goes into attracting recruits.
As part of a recent study, 224 incoming college recruits were asked to rank their top Power 5 teams based on their interest to attend the university if they were hypothetically considered the No. 1 recruit in the nation.
What the research revealed was very telling-- and unexpected.
According to 224 recruits, these are the TOP BRANDS in college football.— Pick Six Previews (@PickSixPreviews) February 10, 2018
"Brand Rank" vs. 2018 Recruit Class
Correlation = .851 (Very Strong)
Read the article here: https://t.co/Sh7Qumzctt pic.twitter.com/4915ydBAQT
Clemson, surprisingly enough, was ranked No. 1, while Ohio State, Penn State, Georgia, and Oregon rounded out the top five.
Looking at the list in its entirety, what does it tell us?
Alabama's brand isn't flashy. They're a team that goes out and wins. That's enticing to more than enough talented prospects, but we have to remember that these kids are 17 and 18 years old. There's more that goes into it.
Oregon's brand will always be top-notch because of their relationship with Nike. They haven't had much success on the national stage in the last couple years, but their uniforms are iconic and facilities are top-notch.
Oregon should be 1st. Nike invested generational money into that brand. UW would never get same treatment. Stay true to purple and gold.— El Guapo (@pancho_joe) February 9, 2018
It just goes to show all that really goes into the recruiting process. As the years go on, programs will continue to get more and more creative with every aspect of the game. They'll have to. Otherwise, you never know-- maybe Central Florida is a sleeping giant ready to take over the landscape? Stay tuned.