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JoePa churns out picks, Tressel gaining ground

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

ESPN Stats & Information published a very interesting piece (ESPN Insider) about the college football coaches who produce the most NFL draft picks and the best pro players. Coaches were ranked based on where players went in the draft and how their NFL careers panned out.

"We ranked players based on the following criteria: Hall of Fame induction, MVP awards, All-Pro first-team selections, All-Pro second-team selections, Pro Bowls, offensive and defensive player of the year and rookie of the year awards and membership on a Super Bowl-winning or -losing team. A player scores on our ranking system when he earns at least one of those honors."

Not surprisingly, Penn State's Joe Paterno coached more NFL draft picks (243) than anyone else in his 43 seasons at the helm of the Nittany Lions program. But only three Paterno players -- Jack Ham, Franco Harris and Mike Munchak -- went on to reach the Hall of Fame.

Former Michigan coach Bo Schembechler ranks fifth on the list with 126 players drafted in 27 years at the school.

Some other items of note:

  • Former Michigan coach Lloyd Carr ranks eighth on the list of coaches who got the most out of their NFL picks. Former Ohio State coach John Cooper finished right behind Carr despite having more players drafted (95 vs. 61). Cooper also coached at Arizona State and Tulsa.

  • Paterno and Florida State coach Bobby Bowden share the lead in first-round picks with 31.

  • When it comes to producing NFL draft picks in the last decade, Ohio State's Jim Tressel leads Big Ten coaches and ranks third overall with 50 draftees, including 11 first-round picks. Carr comes in right behind Tressel with 48 picks (eight first-rounders). Former Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez, who retired after the 2005 season, is tied for ninth place with 38 draft picks and eight first rounders.