Certainly lots of work to do in order to move up the Sun Belt Coaches Poll, and it begins with recruiting. If you can convince the best in the state to come to Statesboro, then you will start to see those polls change. The Eagles got off to a very good start in that department on Friday by going camping. It's the first of it's kind in Statesboro and already they are setting records. "We got close to 400 kids here today. We're anticipating about 250 or so." according to Eagles Head Coach Willie Fritz
Absolutely packed house at Paulson Stadium Friday afternoon. A field full of high schoolers looking to catch a coaches eye and one day land a scholarship offer, the players are on display and the coaches are keeping a close eye. "Well, we're looking for movement." says Fritz, who is about to start his first season at Georgia Southern. "We're looking for competitiveness." "We're looking for some of the intangibles that you're not able to see on film or when you go visit them in places or talk to the coach." They are also looking for the growth of a program. Larger turnouts means larger talent pools to draw from. The construction at Paulson Stadium makes the program more attractive, but no one will deny the opportunity to play at the games highest level makes a difference.
"Often times, I'd be recruiting a kid and their reason for not coming to my institution even thought it might be a better fit, was the opportunity to play at the highest level of collegiate football." says Fritz.
The high school football coaches in the area see that change is coming as well. "Southern always been an attraction to the local high school football players around here." says Ron Flott, Head Coach at Long County High Schooo. "And I think as they get into the 1-A mid-majors, I think the interest will bump up because undoubtedly, we'll be making some bowl games here pretty soon." he adds.
A few more groups like the one they had Friday in Statesboro over the next few years and there is no telling where this program will end up. Good problem to have.