Maybe it’s the next big trend in football recruiting.
Another premier program appears set to take a hard-line stance in refusing to allow committed prospects to take visits elsewhere.
Texas is joining the likes of Michigan and Oregon — and on a slightly less relevant scale, Georgia Tech — in instituting a no-visit policy for its commits.
The coaches at these schools are up front with the players they recruit. When you commit to us, they say, we commit to you. And whether it’s in June or January, you’re with us. Want to look around? Fine, but we’re dropping you.
The policy seems to make sense on the surface. After all, college programs need to guard against the recruit who simply wants to reserve his spot in case nothing better develops. And the school’s pledge to the committed prospect, in theory, provides insurance. If the recruit gets hurt, the coaches say they’ll honor his scholarship.
Under closer inspection, the whole thing reeks of a certain hypocrisy and arrogance — and, in the case of Texas, perhaps a hint of desperation.
To the programs who want to fall in line behind the Longhorns in this 2014 recruiting cycle, proceed carefully.
If your school’s a hot commodity, everything works fine. You’ve got leverage over the recruits. But as soon as something appears awry on campus — say, the prospect of a fourth straight disappointing season after nine straight with at least 10 wins — forget it. Leverage returns to the prospects, where it belongs, anyway, until signing day.
Really, it’s up to the kids to determine the fate of these no-visit policies, because for the only time in their amateur careers, they hold the cards. Once a recruit signs that letter of intent, the college essentially owns him.
Let’s face it, the real concern of schools like Michigan, Oregon and Texas is not that their classes will get bogged down with recruits reserving spots. These are desirable destinations. When kids commit to play in Ann Arbor, Eugene and Austin, they largely mean it.
Continue reading this article: Taking a look at no-visit policies