Who is UGA’s top recruiter? Not who you might guess…

In the spirit of the season — Signing Day is Wednesday, you might have heard — ESPNU and ESPN The Magazine have ranked the 20 best recruiters in college sports.

There’s a University of Georgia coach on the list, and you might guess the UGA rep would be a football coach, given that program’s recent roll on the recruiting trail.

But guess again.

Georgia gymnastics coach Jay Clark is the ninth best recruiter in all of college sports, according to the rankings compiled by a panel of three dozen “experts.” He is the only gymnastics coach -– and the only coach from a Georgia school –- on the list.

Clark is in his second season as the Gym Dogs’ head coach and was a long-time assistant and lead recruiter under former coach Suzanne Yoculan.

Here’s the ESPNU/ESPN The Magazine list of college sports’ top 20 recruiters:

1. Pat Henry, Texas A&M men’s and women’s cross-country/indoor and outdoor track

2. Anson Dorrance, North Carolina women’s soccer

3. Ed Orgeron, USC football assistant

4. Chris Dailey, Connecticut women’s basketball assistant

5. Missy Meharg, Maryland field hockey

6. Mike Krzyzewski, Duke men’s basketball

7. Russ Rose, Penn State women’s volleyball

8. Burton Burns, Alabama football assistant

9. Jay Clark, Georgia gymnastics

10. Chad Holbrook, South Carolina baseball assistant

11. Dan Jordan, Alaska rifle

12. John Calipari, Kentucky men’s basketball

13. Mike McGraw, Oklahoma State men’s golf

14. Jovan Vavic, USC men’s and women’s water polo

15. Thad Matta, Ohio State men’s basketball

16. Kelly Inouye-Perez, UCLA softball

17. Mike LoPresti, Fairleigh Dickinson women’s bowling

18. Tosh Lupoi, Cal football assistant

19. Kelly Amonte Hiller, Northwestern women’s lacrosse

20. J Robinson, Minnesota wrestling

66 comments Add your comment

Ted Striker

January 31st, 2011
7:16 pm

Very interesting list. Thanks for sharing. By the way, thanks for all the hard work you do.


January 31st, 2011
7:21 pm

I would imagine “FREE BEER” would be a big NO NO to intice recruits to come Bowl for your school???


January 31st, 2011
7:22 pm

I know who is UGA football’s best-Mike Bobo..


January 31st, 2011
7:25 pm

You left out “Chainsaw” Jackson from Resume Speed, Alabama..Head recruiter for the Alabama mumbly peg team.


January 31st, 2011
7:40 pm

Kudos to Dan Jenkins at Number 11 the Alaskan rifle team. Anyone who could convince a 17 year old to come to Alaska and shoot Polar Bears in exchange for an education and possibly your life you have to admire. Richt should get this guy. Now that would be cutting edge.

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January 31st, 2011
7:42 pm

Last year not making the regionals after NEVER missing the Super 6, this year known as a top 10 recruiter in all of sports…. talk about hot seat!!


January 31st, 2011
7:45 pm

how does one come up with a system to compare the recruiting abilities of a rifle team coach to a football coach? this list is a joke.


January 31st, 2011
7:51 pm

This list should be called “Who can sell the biggest line of BS” (excluding Jay Clark, of course).


January 31st, 2011
7:51 pm

Well Blow Me Down , Maties !


January 31st, 2011
8:00 pm

Not sure you can compare apples to apples with this list and I don’t think there is a better recruiter in all of college sports better than Calipari, as much as I hate to admit that.

Dawgdad (The Original)

January 31st, 2011
8:10 pm

I think George Washington should be on this list and maybe Benjamin Franklin. Just ask Rev Newton, who dealt with both of these gents during his son’s recruitment at Auburn and Miss ST.

Git 'er done

January 31st, 2011
8:23 pm

Who really cares about this crap. I wanna know who’s gonna be UGA’s next offensive line coach ?


January 31st, 2011
8:25 pm

Tim trying to help you out here with hits cause thats what sports journalism is all about now days,,,, but what a waste of space. i mean this is awful.


January 31st, 2011
8:30 pm

if i were you i’d delete this piece ASAP. All time low guy you gotta see it.

Another One Bites the Dust

January 31st, 2011
8:40 pm

Thought for sure the bagman from Ugag would top the list.


January 31st, 2011
8:49 pm

Good to hear. Excited to see the Gym Dawgs back in National contention in the years to come.

Sopwith Camel

January 31st, 2011
8:54 pm

Wish they had published a list of the top recruiters in each sport……..that would have made more sense. Would like to see where UGA ranks in recruiting tennis players for example.


January 31st, 2011
9:08 pm

Who is the Victoryland guy for Auburn? It’s only 180K baby! Just don’t let your kid know about it. Hide your Benz, hide your house, hide your bling cause they investigatin’ everybody up here….

A. R. Melton

January 31st, 2011
9:19 pm

Sure isn’t the 20 most honest recruiters!!!

Dixie Redcoat Band

January 31st, 2011
9:34 pm

It’s kind of a goofy list. Who cares..this is football time.

Rusty Mutt

January 31st, 2011
9:48 pm

What is the dump fee at your landfill… er… campus?


January 31st, 2011
10:17 pm

Think there’s a bagman for the F.D.U. womens bowling team? I would hope ESPN didn’t waste a lot of resources on this bit.

Gen Neyland

January 31st, 2011
10:33 pm

Orgeron. Good recruiter, bad thief. I’d rather have 10 Lane Kiffin’s to answer for than 1 Ed Orgeron…

Frank Lane

January 31st, 2011
11:03 pm

Only one football recruiter on the entire list.

the sham

January 31st, 2011
11:13 pm

What? Where is John Luthi? He coaches the College Rodeo Team at the University of Tennessee at Martin… Surely the job he does is far more commendable than a women’s bowling team…

Seriously though – what is the methodology for these rankings? I think Dawg89 nailed it.

boise bulldog

February 1st, 2011
1:02 am

Stanford wins every one of the trophies for best overall sports programs and no one from there on this list? Oh I forgot Stanford sells ifself.


February 1st, 2011
6:27 am

Pretty subjective list, weighted a bit heavy on college b-ball.
How about Jack Parker for College Hockey at BU ? or Pat Summit ?

Alaska Rifle and FDU Womens Bowling ?

Dean Tate

February 1st, 2011
6:34 am

How much “recruiting” does Anson Dorrance really have to do at N.C.? It’s more like picking the ones he wants.

Beast from the East

February 1st, 2011
6:41 am

Really? Are they serious with this list?


February 1st, 2011
6:47 am

What? Ok…you got me to click your silly little article. My response is …okeedokee…so what.

Herschel Talker

February 1st, 2011
6:57 am

Paul Johnson is Georgia’s best…he scares them all away from Tech!


February 1st, 2011
7:47 am

hey knuckledraggers -
the blog gives props to UGA gymnastics program, which is pretty good if you haven’t heard. they pretty much sell out stegeman for every meet, so it’s a pretty big deal in athens.

[...] circumstances, will end up with a good haul on Wednesday. And Georgia’s top recruiter isn’t who you might guess, writes Tim Tucker of the [...]

Tech 54

February 1st, 2011
8:22 am

There is someone out there willing to analyze just about anything and then either make a list or write a book, or both. Comparing recruiting accumen across these various disciplines is silly.


February 1st, 2011
8:39 am

I must agree with RomeDawg about Calipari; at least being on the list.

How ’bout whomever recruits for the Arkansas cross country team?


February 1st, 2011
9:07 am

If coach Clark is so productive, what has happened to the gymnastics team?


February 1st, 2011
9:16 am

I figured we would see the ATM card distributor from Opelika’s Colonial Bank branch on that list near the top.


February 1st, 2011
9:35 am

If you put “UGA” and “recruiter” in the same headline, you should make clear if you are talking about something other than football. If you want to talk about gymnastic recruiting (and, really, who doesn’t?), please wait until Thursday when everything goes back to normal.

Savannah Native

February 1st, 2011
9:35 am

Chip Towers without a doubt!


February 1st, 2011
9:42 am

Louder, Pete Dye and MacGregor- Auburn football recruiters

Paul in RDU

February 1st, 2011
9:59 am

I wonder what the criteria was for creating this list. If it is how much talent you get and how many championship Anson Dorrance meets the requirements (20 out of the last 30 NCAA championships) – but where is Geno Auriemma?


February 1st, 2011
12:54 pm

OK, seriously…the rifle coach at Alaska????

If you’re going to post a list of top recruiters, post it for the sports that matter.


February 1st, 2011
12:55 pm

I knew this one, hands down!

who really give a ____

February 1st, 2011
12:59 pm


"Pete Dye"?

February 1st, 2011
1:11 pm

“Pete Dye” Isn’t he the golf-course guy? WTF

Bulldog Hack

February 1st, 2011
1:13 pm

I can’t believe that Bobo is not listed.

Bama Hack

February 1st, 2011
1:14 pm

Kirby Smart walks on water.

Bama Hack

February 1st, 2011
1:15 pm

Little Kirby should be the first on everyone’s list. He is the reason for Bama success. :)

I know everything...

February 1st, 2011
1:17 pm

James Quinn at Penn State is a great recruiter for water polo…He is the very best.