Michigan Football Players and the States/Regions They Call Home

Submitted by justingoblue on July 9th, 2012 at 3:41 AM

Earlier this morning, Maize.Blue Wagner posted a fantastic diary detailing the "Best Michigan Player From Each State". In order to finish his diary, he did an extraordinary amount of research into the amount of players hailing from each state (and Canadian provinces), which I'll base this post on. To be clear: I did not compile these numbers myself. Any and all credit for the research it took to get my raw data belongs to Maize.Blue Wagner.

I started by breaking down states by athletic conferences, with states able to double-count (Ohio skews the Big East numbers in a huge way) and took a look at who Michigan likes to deprive of talent. The results look something like this:

Big Ten  
Illinois 491
Indiana 181
Iowa 47
Michigan 2601
Minnesota 34
Nebraska 13
Ohio 683
Pennsylvania 141
Wisconsin 70
Total

4261

 

SEC  
Alabama 6
Arkansas 5
Florida 69
Georgia 13
Kentucky 26
Louisiana 18
Mississippi 1
South Carolina 7
Tennessee 13
Total 158

 

Pac 12  
Arizona 9
California 69
Colorado 24
Oregon 4
Utah 6
Washington 16
Total 128

 

BXII  
Iowa 47
Kansas 13
Missouri 37
Oklahoma 11
Texas 53
Total 161

 

ACC  
Florida 69
Georgia 13
Maryland 16
Massachusetts 46
North Carolina 7
South Carolina 7
Virginia 17
Total 175

 

Big East  
Connecticut 13
Florida 69
New York 133
Kentucky 26
New Jersey 50
Ohio 683
Pennsylvania 141
West Virginia 11
Total 1126

 

Non-BCS

 
Delaware 1
DC 13
Hawaii 2
Idaho 4
Maine 2
Montana 18
Nevada 2
New Hampshire 4
New Mexico 2
Rhode Island 3
South Dakota 13
Vermont 3
Wyoming 5
Total 72

 

Within the Big Ten:

 
Each conference, including the Big Ten:

Excising the Big Ten from the numbers:

As I said before, states double-counting skews numbers, especially Ohio in the Big East, and to a lesser extent Iowa in the BXII. Since I can't simply pretend Cincinnati and Iowa State aren't BCS schools likely to offer in-state talent, I decided to compare by region.

I'm sure there's some criticism headed my way for how the states are broken down (I have an entire book devoted to defining the concept of "Midwestern"), but I'll explain my rationale here. I went with six regions: Midwest, Colonial, Left Coast, Rocky, Cowboy and Dixie.

Midwest was the most straightforward, including the Big Ten footprint plus Missouri and Kansas.

Midwest  
Illinois 491
Indiana 181
Iowa 47
Kansas 13
Michigan 2601
Minnesota 34
Missouri 37
Nebraska 13
Ohio 683
Wisconsin 70
Total 4170

Colonial is the former colonies that didn't secede, plus Maine, DC and Vermont.

Colonial  
Connecticut 13
Delaware 1
DC 13
Maine 2
Maryland 16
Massachussetts 46
New Hampshire 4
New Jersey 50
New York 133
Pennsylvania 141
Rhode Island 3
Vermont 3
Total 425

Left Coast is made up of states with a Pacific coast. Hawaii is included in the Left Coast states simply because there was no other semi-logical choice.

Left Coast
California 69
Hawaii 2
Oregon 4
Washington 16
Total 91

Rocky states include Colorado, Idaho, Montana, the Dakotas, Utah, Wyoming, and Alaska for the same reason Hawaii is "Left Coast".

Rocky  
Alaska 1
Colorado 24
Idaho 4
Montana 18
North Dakota 9
South Dakota 13
Utah 6
Wyoming 5
Total 80

Cowboy is Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

Cowboy  
Arizona 9
Nevada 2
New Mexico 2
Oklahoma 11
Texas 53
Total 77

Dixie is the former Confederacy, minus Texas and with Kentucky and West Virginia added.

Dixie  
Alabama 6
Arkansas 5
Florida 69
Georgia 13
Kentucky 26
Louisiana 18
Mississippi 1
North Carolina 7
South Carolina 7
Tennessee 13
Virginia 17
West Virginia 11
Total 193

By region, Midwest included:

By region, Midwest removed:

Basically, breaking this down to its simplest form, Michigan, throughout its history, has been totally dependent on Michigan and Ohio recruiting to survive. Even with a "national brand", the vast majority of players (84.6%) come from within our conference footprint and 77.1% of players from the footprint hail from Michigan or Ohio. I hope this was informative, and again, make sure to go read and posbang Maize.Blue Wagner's diary.

Comments

justingoblue

July 9th, 2012 at 4:18 AM ^

This post might fit in better among the diaries, but I don't want to post a diary that didn't require individual research on my part and is simply manipulating data from what would be the diary below it. If one of the mods wants to move this to the diaries, that's fine by me, I just don't presume to start there, given the circumstances.

justingoblue

July 9th, 2012 at 9:28 AM ^

I figured they were different enough topics to deserve separate posts, but I've never seen a diary posted immediately after another that "piggybacks" or whatever this post's relationship to your diary is. I'm sure Seth will figure out what to do if he comes across my post here. Anyway, great work, I wouldn't have been able to create this post without your research.

Jasper

July 9th, 2012 at 6:14 AM ^

Nice work. RichRod's staff was apparently not the first to strike out in Mississippi (assuming that past staffs at least explored the area).

justingoblue

July 9th, 2012 at 12:26 PM ^

That reference was to the brewery in California. My understanding is that it can refer to politics, but I've never heard it used in a pejorative manner.

I certainly wasn't trying to say anything political, and if it's offensive to anyone I'll change it, but I was going for somewhat "fun" names for different sections of the country (obviously I came up empty for my home region. Rust Belt doesn't seem to fit for a good portion of the Midwest, or I would have used it) and that's the only term that came to mind.

WolvinLA2

July 9th, 2012 at 3:04 PM ^

As a left coast resident who votes right, "Left Coast" was originally just a different way to say West Coast, not meant politically at all, certainly not pejoratively since people out here say it about themselves. Personally, I prefer Best Coast.

That said, I'm surprised by how many players we've had from Montana and South Dakota.

snarling wolverine

July 9th, 2012 at 2:31 PM ^

Cool graphics, but your conclusion is a skewed a bit by the fact that we basically never recruited outside the Midwest for our first 90 years or so as a football program.  It wasn't until the 1970s or so that we really started to make an effort to recruit nationally.  Anthony Carter was one of the first players we'd ever recruited from Florida, for instance, and he came in our program's centennial (1979).

justingoblue

July 9th, 2012 at 2:37 PM ^

That wasn't the best wording. "Has been" is a better way to describe our dependence on Michigan and Ohio, since it would say more about the past than future, which is all the post was intended to do. I'll change the wording when I can get back on a real computer.

Guy above: Leaders/Legends would have been hilarious. If it was easier to edit, I might go back and plug those in for Midwest.

MaizeNBlueAboveALL

July 12th, 2012 at 5:41 PM ^

Very interesting piece. I was in no way aware that so many MI kids have made up the program. I am sure a lot of them came between team 1-55 then it probably started having a little more variety, considering the change in times. IMO.