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Smarter recruiting starts with studying geography

Recruiting’s a never-ending job for college hoops coaches. You’re scouting guys to fit your program and style, convince them your school’s the place to be and hope they stick around more than one or two years.

And it’s usually in places where everyone’s after the same players.

That’s why Drew Cannon’s story regarding recruiting and geography over at Basketball Prospectus is a must-read for every hoops coach.

He targets New York – not NYC, but the rest of the state – South Carolina, Oregon and Washington as places where hoops talent resides, but for various reasons often gets overlooked by coaches.

Meanwhile, Florida, Minnesota, New Jersey, North Carolina and Ohio are all over-recruited (talent’s easy to track down, every coach is there after it and there’s an abundance of in-state D-I schools those players can attend).

But that’s just the start of Cannon’s story. He also included a massive appendix of raw geographic data that I could spend hours reading. (And have.)

Take the breakdown of players from a state attending a specific conference. Noting that 70 percent of Big West players come from California shouldn’t come as a massive surprise, but it’s still a little shocking to see. The next highest percentages? California players in West Coast Conference schools (40.4 percent) and the Pac-10 (35 percent).

No wonder there are 412 D-I players from California.

You also can follow me on Twitter @MikeMillerNBC.