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Lather, rinse, repeat: SEC tops again in first-round draft picks

2013 NFL Draft Getty Images

By now, you know the drill.

With 12 players selected in the first round of Thursday night’s NFL draft, the SEC topped all conferences and tied the ACC (2007) for the most ever in the opening round.  The conference record had been 11 set in 2007.

The past three seasons, 32 of the 96 players selected have come from the conference that’s won the last six BCS championships.

Lagging well behind the SEC were the ACC (seven, which counts new 2013 member Syracuse), the Pac-12 (five) and  Big 12 (three).  Two players from football independents were taken, while the Big Ten, MAC (the No. 1 overall pick, with more on that below) and Conference USA had one player each taken.

The Big Ten, incidentally, narrowly avoided getting shutout in the first round of the draft for the first time since 1953 as Wisconsin’s Travis Fredericks (Dallas Cowboys) was selected with the second-to-last pick of the night.

The only conferences that did not have a player selected were the American Athletic Conference (née Big East), Mountain West and Sun Belt.

Of the 32 players taken last night, 14 were players who left collegiate eligibility on the table for early entry into the NFL.  10 of the 12 SEC draftees were early entrants, while four of the ACC’s seven fell into that category.

As far as individual schools go, Alabama from the SEC and Florida State from the ACC had three players apiece selected.  Florida, Georgia, LSU, North Carolina and Oregon were the only other programs with more than one player taken.

Just two of the 32 players selected came from non-BCS conferences (Central Michigan, Houston).

After the jump are some random notes and quotes sent out by the various sports information departments across the country regarding players selected in the first round of the NFL draft:

– Central Michigan offensive tackle Eric Fisher is the first-ever player from the MAC to be selected No. 1 overall; Marshall’s Byron Leftwich (the Herd didn’t move from the MAC to Conference USA until 2005) was selected with the seventh pick of the first round by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2003, the previous high-water mark for a player from that conference.  The only other Chip selected in the first round was offensive lineman Joe Staley, taken 28th overall in 2007 by the San Francisco 49ers.

– Selected by the Oakland Raiders at No. 12 overall more than five months after nearly dying on a Houston Cougars practice field, cornerback D.J. Hayden became only the second Conference USA player selected in that spot or higher.  Memphis defensive lineman Dontari Poe was chosen at No. 11 by the Kansas City Chiefs last year.

– For the second time the past three years, a Texas A&M Aggie was selected No. 2 overall.  A&M offensive lineman Luke Joeckel, taken by the Kansas City Chiefs, joined linebacker Von Miller (Denver Broncos, 2011) as Aggies selected in that slot.  All told, four Aggies have been selected second overall.  This draft also marked the first time in program history that an Aggie has been picked in the top-ten overall three consecutive years.

Ezekiel Ansah (No. 5, Detroit Lions) is the first BYU player selected in the Top Five since Jim McMahon was also taken No. 5 overall and also by an NFC Central/North club (Chicago Bears).

– With the selections of cornerback Dee Milliner (No. 9, New York Jets) and offensive lineman Chance Warmack (No. 10, Tennessee Titans), Alabama has seen a total of six of its players taken in the Top 10 of the draft the past three years.

– Offensive lineman D.J. Fluker was selected by the San Diego Chargers right after former teammate Warmack, marking the first time in NFL draft history that players from the same school had been selected with back-to-back-to-back picks in the first round (USC had three straight players taken in the seventh round of the 2011 draft).  Oddly enough, Alabama will be looking to become the first program in the BCS era to earn a crystal three-peat.

– Staying on the Tide tip, 14 players have been selected in the first round since Nick Saban took over in 2007, with 11 of those coming the past three years.

– North Carolina’s Jonathan Cooper (No. 7, Arizona Cardinals) is the first guard picked in the top 10 since Colorado’s Chris Naeole was selected by the New Orleans Saints at No. 10 in 1997.

– Defensive lineman Dion Jordan (No. 3, Miami Dolphins) and offensive lineman Kyle Long (No. 20, Chicago Bears) are the first two Oregon Ducks selected in the same first round since 1972.

– Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins is the first Clemson player to leave the school after his junior year and become a first round pick since Anthony Simmons was the 15th pick of the first round in the 1998 draft.  Trevor Pryce (1997) and Chester McGlockton (1992) are the other two Clemson juniors to come out early and be a first-round selection. At 20 years, 10 months and 13 days, Hopkins is also the youngest first-round draft choice in Clemson history.

– Saban, on adding to the Tide’s first-round legacy: “I think we are really proud of our players, first of all. We have had three first-round guys so far, and we have had three or four every year for the last few years. I am really proud of the coaches that helped develop them. It is great to be able to watch our player’s dreams come true in the draft.

– “While it took a while to find the right position for him to maximize his athletic potential,” Sooners head coach Bob Stoops said of Lane Johnson, who came to OU as a quarterback. “I have no doubt that he has a huge upside and will only get better with more experience playing tackle. Coach Kittle and Coach Patton did a tremendous job of quickly acclimating him to compete at a high level, while Coach Schmidt and our strength staff did an outstanding job of accelerating his physical development. Lane is a special individual and we’ll anxiously follow his progress this fall along with our many other Sooners in the NFL.

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22 Responses to “Lather, rinse, repeat: SEC tops again in first-round draft picks”
  1. suprmous says: Apr 26, 2013 1:28 AM

    I do believe the Draft like the BCS makes for some strange bed fellows: some surprises and some not so logical picks. For those surprises, you just wanna shake your head and think what were they thinkin. Glad to see Ed (Reid) go in the 1st roun. Just hope that the rest of the Howdy Doody Gang from LSU goes in the 2nd and there’s no disappointments. If the 1st roun taught me anything it’s taught me what patience is a l’il more. Congrats to all of the guys who got in the 1st roun and here’s to those to come up in the next couple of rouns.

  2. scalpemseminoles says: Apr 26, 2013 8:37 AM

    you can’t say they are the top if they aren’t #1…

    Way to go noles! take notice, recruits

  3. 8to80texansblog says: Apr 26, 2013 10:11 AM

    How many of those 12 were from the SEC West? Best division in football, hands down!

  4. mudhead123 says: Apr 26, 2013 10:22 AM

    ^^^^^^^^
    Another team SEC fan

  5. gamustangdude says: Apr 26, 2013 11:01 AM

    8to80texansblog says:Apr 26, 2013 10:11 AM

    How many of those 12 were from the SEC West? Best division in football, hands down!
    __________________

    12 SEC players were drafted, 6 (Bama x 3, LSU x 2, A&M x 1) from the West and 6 (UGA x 2, Florida x 2, Tenn. x 1, Mizzou x 1) from the East. I guess there goes that ‘hands down” theory.

    I personally think the SEC East has caught up to the west this year, if not passed them. However, I’m just a fan, no one important so don’t take it too seriously.

  6. normtide says: Apr 26, 2013 11:51 AM

    Team SEC all the way! Must be going something right.

  7. pb420 says: Apr 26, 2013 3:04 PM

    @ noles homer:

    Pretty pathetic coming onto an sec thread to crow about your crappy team. If fsu were to play in an actual competitive conference like the sec you’d get spanked annually. Now that EJ is gone you better come up with a new excuse as to why the noles are gonna be overrated and mediocre yet again.

  8. 8to80texansblog says: Apr 26, 2013 3:44 PM

    SEC West has won last 4 national titles….

    That said, as my school is only a sophomore this year in the SEC, I don’t have near as much “SEC Pride” as some others.

    I don’t root for other SEC teams. I definitely don’t root for LSU… ever. But it’s undeniable that the SEC in has the best overall set of teams in the country and of those teams, the SEC West has been dominating the SEC East over the last few years.

  9. amosalanzostagg says: Apr 26, 2013 5:19 PM

    Sigh,

    Let the actions on the field do the talking. There is more value in rounds 2 through 5 that will have more All Pros and Hall of Famers than the first round of the NFL draft.

    Remember Ryan Leaf?

    The SEC did well last night, but to say that the B1g and PAC-12 will not a significant impact on NFL rosters as will the rest of the MAC, CUSA, Big 12 et al
    is as ridiculous saving Alabama could play in the NFL.

    Saban would never go to the NFL because his players would have to take a pay cut.

    (drum riff)

    It’s a joke son ( Longhorn Leghorn voice)

    Roll Tide.

  10. noaxetogrind says: Apr 26, 2013 5:23 PM

    8to8, mustang already schooled you a little bit in terms of the draft picks. As far as the “West dominating the East”…time to get schooled again. You might not have noticed that the 2 best teams in the East last year were UGA and Florida and they were a combined 4-0 against the West in the regular season including the Gators beating your boys in their backyard. Not to mention that if UGA didn’t have a little clock mismanagement issue Bama may not quite have made it to the big dance. All that said, if you meant to say that the West has probably on the whole been better than the East over the last several years, no argument. One thing you haven’t learned yet, SEC fans know their stuff so you better bring your facts more than your opinions on here. Lastly, I am not an SEC guy but I also am not a sore loser. The SEC is by FAR, by any measurable standard the best conference. If I was in the conference I would take great pride in it as well. I have no problem with SEC fans chanting their mantra unti somebody can shut them up.

  11. craigmaitland says: Apr 26, 2013 8:26 PM

    SEC has high academic standards as well. No team seems to get hit hard with NCAA sanctions.. Well done!

  12. suprmous says: Apr 26, 2013 10:51 PM

    What seems to be your problem scalpem…..? Is it that you got dropped on your head when you were a baby or taught hate when you were growin up? I fail to see how anybody can be so cruel and judge folks they don’t know along with thinkin that others aren’t entitled to have an opinion. Oh wait, maybe it’s you feel females aren’t supposed to be welcome in a guy’s world unless they’re flat of their back and takin abuse; whether it be physical, mental, or verbal. Whatever it is you need to get a life Pal and realize you’re not the only person on the planet and not God’s Gift to Humanity. At 60 years old I dare say you’d last in my generation. You may come off as macho to others but you’d be just a l’il boy spittin out hatred for those my age. And I’ve got way too much livin to do than to put up with your crap.

  13. suprmous says: Apr 26, 2013 11:00 PM

    Update more congrats to the SEC on their guys gettin the nods. It looks like some good things are finally goin to happen within the NFL. Next maybe GOoDell will be on his way to the unemployment line, just hopin and sayin.

  14. amosalanzostagg says: Apr 27, 2013 7:56 PM

    SEC had 58 players selected

    ACC had 26 players selected

    PAC-12 had 24 players selected

    Big 12 had 20 players selected

    Big 10 had 16 players selected

    Big East had 15 players selected

    That is why the SEC is seen as the best football conference in college football.
    Players want to go to schools that offer a path to the draft, pure and simple.

    Roll Tide

  15. taintedlombardis says: Apr 28, 2013 9:48 AM

    Players want to play where they get paid.

  16. theonlyjagsfan says: Apr 28, 2013 2:22 PM

    Joeckel was drafted by the Jaguars, not the Chiefs.

  17. suprmous says: Apr 28, 2013 8:55 PM

    For you guys who’re thumbin me down well maybe everybody except Normtide have you ever thought that maybe it wouldn’t hurt to be nice to others? I realize that maybe my comin over here’s a mistake in some of you’s minds but all I want to do’s enjoy the company of others who enjoy football as I do. I don’t maintain I’m perfect nor do I maintain I know everything there is to know but I just enjoy the game and support those that I support. If the majority of you really feel that my presence on here’s such a disgrace and an embarrassment just come out and tell me. Geesh Louise, I’ve got nothin to lose by not bein on here but seein a few that have been nice to me but if havin to give up seein them’s what it takes I’ll gladly walk away. I’ve told John that as well. Laugh if you want to, chastize me if you care to, but all I ask is that you be honest and sincere about how you feel. Da Mous

  18. ndrick731 says: Apr 29, 2013 1:47 PM

    The real question here should be will the SEC have more arrests, player suspensions or draft choices. Smart money is on arrests with suspensions a close second. If they actually suspended all that deserve suspensions that would be the easy winner. But of course they don’t actually do any actual educating of the athletes there for the most part.

  19. normtide says: Apr 29, 2013 2:17 PM

    According to media reports, including SI, Oregon had the worst college athlete pot problem in America. Penn State and syracuse have had child molestation issues. A Baylor basketball player killed his teammate, and other members helped dispose the body and cover it up. A UW assistant AD pressured student assistants into coming to his motel room by threatening their positions in the athletic department. I could list more, but you hey my point. I wouldn’t trade the SEC’s issues for any of those.

  20. 8to80texansblog says: Apr 30, 2013 2:24 PM

    @ noaxetogrind

    You just contradicted me and then proved my point in the same breath…. wtf?

    You can’t just pick the teams you like and use their records…

    SEC West went 8-7 vs SEC East including SEC Title game.

    And by the way, I never said that SEC West dominated the East, just said the the SEC West was the best division in CFB, which I stand behind.

  21. 8to80texansblog says: Apr 30, 2013 2:31 PM

    or maybe i did….

    But 7 out of the last 10 SEC championships may or may not count as domination.

    Whatever…. I misspoke when I said the West has been dominating the East.

    Still believe the SEC West is the best division in CFB.

  22. amosalanzostagg says: Apr 30, 2013 6:54 PM

    ndrick731 wrote Apr 29, 2013 1:47 PM

    The real question here should be will the SEC have more arrests, player suspensions or draft choices. Smart money is on arrests with suspensions a close second. If they actually suspended all that deserve suspensions that would be the easy winner. But of course they don’t actually do any actual educating of the athletes there for the most part.
    __________________________________
    Na,

    We suspend them and let the felons go through the Judicial process and let the courts decide.

    Not like a major university, say Notre Dame, (whose team lost in a National Championship game to a University who kicked players off the team once news of crimes came to the fore) who just happen to slow walk a criminal investigation on a football player (Prince Shembo) and a University Administration just happen to have a influential alum be directed to represent a principal suspect in a criminal police investigation. Where did the retainer come from? Explain how the lawyer who represented the alleged suspect has access to information BEFORE any official investigation is ever concluded, much less have the results released. How about a County DA (in which the major university just happens to reside) who “chose” not to present the case in question to a grand jury because the victim was dead? Can you say Quid Pro Quo?

    We may have deranged fans from Wisconsin who kill trees, but we let them be tried before a jury of their peers, but we don’t lawyer allege felons up BEFORE the fact in order to keep them playing football.

    Roll Tide. (15 and counting)

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