Beating the system
A few tech-savvy college football coaches probably fired off a text similar to the one above (Great, now contacting recruits will take forever) on Saturday afternoon when they learned -- possibly by text message -- that
So what's a coach to do? A year ago, coaches still could only call once a week, but they could text to their hearts' content. And what did many of those text messages say? "Call me." But with their BlackBerrys holstered since Aug. 1, how do coaches get their message to recruits?
The ban may also force players to be more proactive. After getting caught in a scholarship crunch that squeezed him out of Florida's class, Sanders is looking at several other schools. He likes Georgia, but he also may check out Florida State, UCLA and possibly Miami. Sunday, he said he planned to call a Miami coach after his telephone interview with SI.com. A player in Sanders' position may have to make a few more calls to gauge programs' interest. Before, he could simply count the texts.
So is the ban a good thing? Coaches argue that it wasn't the text messages that helped build relationships, it was the phone calls those messages facilitated. Every year, coaches complain that the NCAA allows them less and less time to learn who they're recruiting. More contact, coaches argue, would help them discern who truly wants to win championships, who can handle the rigors of college life and who might get into trouble. Of course, coaches also could help by not accepting commitments 11 months before signing day, but why police themselves when they could blame the NCAA?
Love, the future Alabama lineman, agrees. Love said before the ban he would clear his inbox before going to bed and wake up to find a full inbox. He said he would get six or seven texts during each school day. He also said he once went over his monthly allotment by 300 messages, which stung when the bill came.
"So we got the unlimited plan," Love said. "Then three weeks later, the ban went into effect."
Fear not, Alabama fans. Yes, Crimson Tide commit
Stevenson said Scott visited Auburn to hang out with former teammate
Such visits may rile fans, but if it bothers you that much, think about how you would have felt at age 17 had someone offered you an all-expenses paid trip to hang out with a bunch of cool college kids. You probably wouldn't have turned it down, either.
The fourth year of Academic Progress Rate data will be released this spring, and
That competition may not be on the court, though. It may be in the classroom. As penalized programs try increase their APR and earn back those lost scholarships, they'll be far less likely to take a player considered an academic reach. That has raised concern among some NCAA members. One fringe benefit of the current system, some say, is that it allows access to higher education for some players who might never have had an opportunity to attend college otherwise. Now, coaches may not recruit those players out of fear that their APR could dip even lower if the player washes out. At the NCAA Convention on Saturday, NCAA president
"We want to continue to recruit the students for our teams that we have in the past," Brand said, "provided that with adequate assistance they can be successful academically."