If you have a lot of interest from a variety of college coaches, there is no doubt that one of the lines you may end up hearing is about how their coaching staff really cares for their players and always does what is in their best interest. There is no doubt that when the coaches say this, there is some truth behind it.
But if you think for a second that they would be okay with you picking a larger school that could be a better fit for you academically, you are crazy. These coaches want to find the best athletes possible and will do all kinds of things to force you into a commitment (see deadline) and stick to it as well.
The reason why I came up with this article idea was what I saw shortly before Signing Day. A major Division I-AA/FCS who always seems to be competing for national titles received a commitment from a talented running back. This athlete had a great deal of potential so they wanted to do everything they could to keep a larger school from swooping in at the last minute with an offer. For the record, this athlete was a Junior College player.
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The coaches from this college requested to his high school and Junior College coaches to not let word leak out. They wanted to keep this on the down low as much as possible. Once Signing Day rolled around and he was basically coming to their school, the coaches at the college no longer needed to keep it under wraps.
Like I said before, if State University came in with a full scholarship and a better fit for him academically and athletically, this Division I-AA school wouldn’t care. They may talk a big game but when it comes down to it and their backs are against the wall, they will do everything they can to land the top talent. This allows them to win games which helps them keep their job and make money coaching football in the process.
Division I-AA/smaller Division I-A schools/mid major Division I basketball programs also try to do everything they can to keep other coaches from knowing who they are recruiting and who they are offering. There is a recent example from a mid major basketball program who put together a fantastic string of performances year after year over the last decade. They were landing diamonds in the rough and winning a lot of games.
Once the major college basketball programs started figuring that out, the coaches from these schools started to pay much more attention to their recruits. One school was able to snatch one of their verbally committed athletes because they were a bigger program in a better conference. These coaches started getting paranoid and were doing everything they could to keep their offers and commitments as quiet as possible. It didn’t matter if the other schools offered a better place for you, the mid-major program wanted your skills and they will do all they can to keep you in the fold.
What sucks about this article is it is all true. You are likely to hear some fantastic lines from college coaches throughout the recruiting process. But in the end, know that you and your family are the only ones that really want is best for you. And even if you have to anger a coach in the process, do it. You will likely end up happier and not have to wonder if you made the right decision.