to recruit Polybian Principes or Marian Cohort. Considering upkeep and the 2 more defense point what would you choose? I would choose the Polybian principes. While you can't recruit in so many regions as Marian legionaries, still you can recruit principes in most of Italy which is at the center of Mediterranean sea.
If you consider other factions, not even them can recruit their best units in so many regions.
maybe not as the Carthagininan's one (29 defense, for sacred band) but 25-26 was what i was expecting.