BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – There is plenty of credit to go around for Indiana's dramatic college football turnaround in the past two years, but one person who often flies under the radar is Lee Wilbanks, Indiana's senior director of recruiting.
But for the experts who know the importance of that behind-the-scenes work, Wilbanks isn't a secret anymore. The national website FootballScoop.com has named Wilbanks their Personnel Director of the Year, the site announced on Wednesday.
Known as "a tireless grinder with an eye for talent,'' Wilbanks has a close relationship with Indiana coach Tom Allen. They worked together at several stops, and he became a critical part of Indiana's staff once Allen took over as the Hoosiers' head coach in late 2016.
Wilbanks was chosen for the award by its former winners. Indiana, a school with a horrible football history, has gone 14-7 in the past two years and spent most of last season ranked in the top-10. They've done that by elevating their recruiting, and adding a star or two worth of production by developing players at a high level.
"We don't have to out-recruit people, we have to out-evaluate people, and once you get them, you have to out-develop them," said Allen. "That's how you win at Indiana. It's finding those guys that fit our system and fit our culture.
"At a place like Indiana you have to do a tremendous job combing the country to find great fits and he's a tenacious bulldog in that endeavor. Tireless worker, watches hours and hours and hours of film, knows everybody that's out there. He does a tremendous job finding guys out there that can help us."
To read the complete story from FootballScoop.com on Wilbanks and the award, please CLICK HERE
Related stories on Indiana recruiting
- CARTER SMITH: Ohio offensive tackle Carter Smith is the seventh commitment in Indiana's 2022 recruiting class. CLICK HERE
- JOSH HOOVER: Indiana got its first offensive commitment in the class of 2022 on Tuesday night when Rockwall-Heath (Texas) quarterback Joshn Hoover committed to the Hoosiers. CLICK HERE
- ISAIAH JONES: Linebacker Isaiah Jones of London, Ohio committed to Indiana on Sunday. Jones is 6-foot-2 and 215 pounds, and received substantial interest from Minnesota, Cincinnati, Duke, Wake Forest and several MAC schools. CLICK HERE
- TREVELL MULLEN: Four-star Florida cornerback Trevell Mullen, the younger brother of Indiana All-American cornerback Tiawan Mullen, committed to Indiana on Sunday after his official visit to Bloomington. CLICK HERE
- DASAN McCULLOUGH: Four-star athlete Dasan McCullough, one of the top players in the Class of 2022, has de-committed from Ohio State and will join Indiana instead. His father is Indiana running backs coach Deland McCullough. CLICK HERE
- KAIDEN TURNER: Arkansas linebacker Kaiden Turner loves what Indiana's linebackers do, and he's thrilled to commit to the Hoosiers and join that outastanding group. CLICK HERE
- RICHARD THOMAS: South Florida defensive end Richard Thomas has committed to Indiana, keeping the Florida-to-Bloomington pipeline alive for Tom Allen and his Hoosiers. CLICK HERE
- INDIANA SCHEDULE: Here is the complete Indiana football schedule for the 2021 season. CLICK HERE