With National Signing Day having come and gone, look for high winds and gusty breezes in the rest of country the next few days.
The entire southeast is letting out a huge sigh of relief, or groan of frustration, depending on the school. The region's second season, and the pressure cooker that comes with it, has just come and gone.
The final verdict? The south wins again.
If college football in the south is king, then recruiting is his jewel-studded crown.
While growing publicity has made recruiting a more mainstream event nationally, the chase has long been a second season in the Deep South. The actual games are just one third of the college football fixation down here. Recruiting and spring practice carry almost as much weight. Success on the recruiting trails can prompt just as much celebration as a bowl victory and unfulfilled expectations can dampen momentum like a loss to an archrival. The emotions, the intensity and the enemies remain the same. Only the playing field and the definition of victory actually change. This, of course, is where it all begins. The obsession is a shared trait between the coaches and the fans. The programs and the masses that follow them do it best in the southern states and have the results to prove it.
ESPN.com's recruiting service Scout’s Inc. had two teams from the ACC (Miami, Clemson) topping their team rankings, followed by three consecutive SEC teams (Alabama, Florida, Georgia). SuperPrep.com, of Scout.com, echoed those sentiments, with just one non-southern school being ranked in their top six classes. Seven of Rivals.com's top 12 classes were ACC or SEC schools.