TMCNet:  Rule changes to usher in a shameless era of recruiting

[January 21, 2013]

Rule changes to usher in a shameless era of recruiting

Jan 21, 2013 (Sun Sentinel – McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) — While 2013 prospects are closing in on their decisions, the Class of 2014 should start looking into unlimited phone plans.

Coming on Aug. 1, college coaches will be allowed to call, text, instant message or email recruits as frequently as they desire.

The development comes from rule changes approved by the Division I Board of Directors at the 2013 NCAA Convention, which took place last week in Texas.

The NCAA says it's slimming down its rulebook, but the changes mean that prospects in all sports can expect their inboxes to expand.

The only players that will be affected by this rule change are the ones who would already be inundated, and in many cases overwhelmed, by the recruiting process. Unlimited contact after a sophomore season won't result in full-ride scholarships for the small-school offensive guard without any scholarship offers — it will mean that five-star recruits can, and certainly will, receive, daily, countless phone calls, innumerable text messages and I don't even care to speculate how many instant messages, from any coach who can score the prospect's information.

In opening the electronic floodgates, the NCAA is legalizing the very thing that it has reprimanded coaches for doing before.

The NCAA had banned text messaging in 2007 and had limited coaches to one call per week.

Now, coaches don't even have to be the ones making the calls. The NCAA also passed a bylaw that says that "support staff" can communicate with recruits on behalf of coaches.

Cash-laden schools like Alabama, Florida, Texas and Ohio State, can now staff massive call-centers, telemarketing their programs to recruits 24/7. I haven't been able to confirm if the NCAA will allow those contact centers to be outsourced, but I hear India has great rates on that sort of thing.

Heck, why spend money on it I bet fans will volunteer to staff the call centers.

And don't think that won't happen. In the cut-throat world of recruiting, only one thing is absolutely certain — if a school can do something to get a recruit, it will. If they don't someone else will. That was the case when some of those actions were illegal. What will happen in this antiracists' paradise Who thought this was a good idea Coaches expressed massive trepidation with the proposed rule changes — their job was tough enough when they didn't have to call prospects all day — and the NCAA obviously never asked any current recruits.

No, the rule changes were proposed, and then they were supported by the NCAA's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and their vice-chairs, Maddie Salamone (a Duke lacrosse player) and Curtis Schickner (a former third baseman at Maryland-Baltimore County) — two people who, of course, who would know all about the perils of being contacted by coaches, looking for their commitment, day and night.

But don't think that the NCAA will help pay for these prospects' cell-phone bills, that would eliminate their amateur status.

For now, the full ramifications of the de-regulation can only be speculated upon, but it's easy to speculate that recruiting will never be the same.

Miami pushing for Robinson It seems that Al Golden has a type.

So if you're an elite cornerback prospect who is favoring LSU, look out.

Like his coaching staff did with Miramar's Tracy Howard in 2012, Golden is going after Blanche Ely's Rashard Robinson, a consensus four-star prospect, hoping to get him to flip on National Signing Day.

You might remember Howard was favored to go to LSU or Florida until an 11th hour change of heart.

The Hurricanes are going to have to push harder to get Robinson. The six-foot-two defensive back has maintained his full commitment to LSU since Miami has started to make a push, which he said coincided, ironically, with his commitment to LSU.

Can Miami change his mind They look committed to doing so. Robinson's status is one to keep an eye on in this, what was already the year of the flipped commitment.

[email protected] ___ (c)2013 the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) Visit the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) at Distributed by MCT Information Services

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