1.) Trend of pitchers getting drafted into the MLB Draft
Analysis: The Georgia baseball team has had 43 consecutive seasons with a player being drafted into the MLB draft. In the last 10 seasons, the Bulldogs have had 34 pitchers be selected to one of 30 MLB teams. This pitchers include current pitchers Alex Wood (LAD), Josh Fields (HOU) and Brooks Brown (LAD). The list also includes 5 pitchers that were selected in the draft last season. I want to do a trend story on the development of pitchers at Georgia. With junior pitcher Robert Tyler likely to be a top draft choice, my plan is to talk with him about how his coaches helped him develop.
My goal is to focus with Tyler and his development under head coach Scott Stricklin. Then, I would get in touch with the Georgia pitching coach Fred Corral to fully understand the how he recruits and develops them into worthy MLB prospects. After those two, I would speak with volunteer coach Mitchell Boggs as he went through the process and got drafted in the fifth round by St. Louis. Finally, I would speak with a local scout on the pitcher’s development and how Georgia compares to other schools.
I find that this is a good trend story as it really shows the strength of Georgia’s program. The coaches have really focused on pitching and I think there is a story to be had here.
2.) Trend: Players named to SEC Academic Honor Roll
Analysis: Georgia has dominated on the field and in the classroom. They have had 99 players be named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll since it’s creation in 1984. Recently, they have had 20 players be honored in the three seasons under head coach Scott Stricklin. These players include current players like Stephen Wrenn and former players like Ryan Lawlor, Conner Jones, Sean McLaughlin and Brandon Stephens among others.
This is a trend as it continues to show the importance that Stricklin and staff put on education. If I were to do a story like this, I would try to find an angle that shows how Georgia is able to pull off this feat. For example, do they have a special session just for players to study? Is there anything that they do differently than other schools? Another thing I would look at is just how much does the athletic department play into making students go to class.
3.) Trend: Recruiting in State
Analysis: Georgia has kept it in state. All but three players have been recruited from outside the state of Georgia. This seems like a trend to me because of how difficult it is to get players to play close to home. In the MLB, there is a lure to go professional and start making “real” money. However, for head coach Scott Stricklin to recruit some of the best players in the state is impressive.
I think the trend to this story is how does he convince so many players to come to the university. I know that academics like Hope Scholarship plays a role, but just how much. I also know that there is a trend of recruiting from the Gwinnett and north Atlanta areas. In fact, the team has three players that were teammates at Walton High School. This isn’t a anomaly. There are a lot of players that have been on the same team before Georgia. So, I would also want to know why this is the case. I would try to contact high school/travel coaches to find out why this is happening. I would also look into the players deciding to all come to Georgia. I would want to exactly why they chose this institution. Maybe it had something to do with the coaches. This is something I would explore in this trend story.