College football recruiting is a strange thing. Sometimes coaches turn to persistent calling to woo a superstar. Some text message nonstop. Others even rip off their shirts. Well, Georgia coach Mark Richt has his own unique approach: According to the ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION, he prays for them.
(Steve Spurrier plays Abraham in Richt’s biblical take on SEC recruiting.)
Here’s what Richt told AJC reporter Michael Carvell when asked how he handles the stress of recruiting:
“I put a lot of things to prayer, and this is one thing I put to prayer. I ask the Lord to ‘Give us the guys that belong at Georgia. The ones that don’t belong, work it out.’ I don’t get too bent out of shape with (recruiting), one way or the other. We’re going to get what we need. We’re going to get the right guys here.”
Well, that’s a new approach. Does that mean that Lane Kiffin is the Lucifer foil to his recruiting Jesus act?
New Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin wasted no time getting in trouble on the recruiting trail, alienating other SEC coaches and earning claims of recruiting violations for simulated press conferences, let alone the claims he made against other SEC programs. Well, now he and his staff have decided to work outside the box by getting, well, weird. According to a report from the ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION, Kiffin’s staff tried to impress a crop of junior recruits last week by ripping off their shirts, Superman style. Crazier yet, the move may have actually worked.
(Can you imagine what they would have done if Layla Kiffin ripped off her shirt?)
Here’s how one recruit described the crazy scene:
“By now, three or four coaches had their shirts ripped off.” top defensive line prospect Garrison Smith said of a presentation by assistant coaches. Then, around 10 Tennessee players, including All-America defensive back Eric Berry of Atlanta and quarterback Jonathan Crompton, ran down from behind the recruits to meet the coaches on the floor. “Eric and the rest of the players were chanting ‘U-T, wild boys … U-T, wild boys … U-T wild boys.’”
Considering the fact that a full 100 top prospects were in attendance at the event, the ridiculous gamut may have actually been a stroke of brilliance from legendary recruiter turned Tennessee assisstant Ed Orgeron.
The Rick Neuheisel era at UCLA is off to a pretty good start, as the Bruins are 1-0 after beating the Tennessee Vols last week at the Rose Bowl. A win like that is bound to impress some recruits and, along with those full page ads, maybe steal some thunder away from cross-town rival USC.
Still, these days winning football games just isn’t enough to woo potential suitors. USC wins a lot of games, and they have the Song Girls to boot, so if you’re going to win them over you have to take your recruiting to the next level. For Neuheisel, that level is the skies.
You work for a major national company for 11 years in a regional office. You probably don’t expect to get any attention from the very high rungs of the company. One day, the CEO of said company wants to talk to you — not about you, but about your son, who happens to be very good at basketball. This is the scenario that has the NCAA investigating John Calipari’s program at Memphis after FedEx’s CEO called one of his employees, who happens to be the mom of a prized recruit (hat tip to THE BIG LEAD.)
FOX SPORTS’ Jeff Goodman has the skinny on the violation, which the university reported to the NCAA, as David Bronczek is not just FedEx’s chief, but a major booster to Memphis’ athletic programs.
Rick Greenspan probably brought this all on himself — when you hire a coach who’s been busted for recruiting violations before like Kelvin Sampson, you’re going to take the fall if and when he’s accused of violations again.
So now with the NCAA’s recent revealing of a charge against Indiana University for “failing to monitor” the activities of both Sampson and assistant Rob Senderoff regarding phone calls to recruits, Greenspan decided to get out, his resignation effective at the end of the calendar year.
(He’ll be riding out of Bloomington with the wind in his hair.)
The INDIANAPOLIS STAR reports that the NCAA infractions committee handed down the charge because:
…IU failed “to provide the extra close oversight and scrutiny of all aspects of the men’s basketball program that was required by the prior infractions record of the former coach.” That refers to Sampson breaking recruiting rules while in his previous job at Oklahoma. Penalties from those violations followed Sampson to IU.
Tags: Cell Phones
, Indiana Hoosiers
, Kelvin Sampson
, Ncaa Basketball
, Ncaa Investigation
, Ncaa Violations
, Rick Greenspan
, Tom Crean
Few things are more enjoyable than someone in the public eye beginning a statement with “I don’t want to sound like a jerk, but…”
When that happens, we can only hope that (a) that person will sound like a jerk, and (b) we can enjoy a rare moment of candor that’s becoming all too rare in this sports world of sound bytes and coachspeak. And when USC football’s beachcomber-in-chief Pete Carroll uttered the aforementioned words to SPORTINGNEWS.COM, he did not disappoint. Read more…
The WIZARD OF ODDS scares out the strange story of the *recruitment* of Nevada high school lineman Kevin Hart. Last Friday, Hart announced at Fernley High School that he had accepted a scholarship to play football at Cal.
Hart: “They really sold me. Coach [Jeff] Tedford and I talked a lot, and the fact that the head coach did most of the recruiting of me kind of gave me the real personal experience.”
One small problem though. Cal hadn’t offered Fernley a full ride. In fact, Golden Bears coach Jeff Tedford wouldn’t know Hart if he delivered a pizza to his house. Read more…
HIGH SCHOOL STAR DROPS HUSKERS FOR … NOTRE DAME? Sometimes life can be a little confusing and get the best of us. Consider the case of Detroit-area high school football player Jonas Gray. Gray is the top-ranked college recruit in the state and recently committed to Nebraska.
We all know the unfortunate tribulations that have befallen the ever-likable Bill Callahan & Co., so Gray this week decided to switch his commit to … (LONG pause) Notre Dame.The DETROIT NEWS reports that Gray, who selected Notre Dame over Michigan, cut ties with the Huskers because “he isn’t certain coach Bill Callahan will be back next season (and Gray) added that Nebraska’s mediocre start (4-4 this season) was not a factor in changing his commitment.”
Wow. That’s almost as bad as having to pick between Charlie Weis and Bill Callahan. Oh, wait.