Exclusive: 8 coaches tell how technology is affecting recruiting
Posted by: Pete Roussel on May 9, 2012
Recruiting continues to change for college football coaches, who more than ever, must remain savvy with new technological advancements to remain competitive with other coaches.
From April 15 to May 31, college coaches now have 168 opportunities to evaluate high school prospects away from college campuses. A maximum of seven assistant coaches are allowed on the road during any given day. Head coaches, however, are not allowed to evaluate prospects away from campus during this time, typically called the spring evaluation period.
168? Every day a coach is on the road, it counts against the 168. So if you send seven coaches on the road Monday through Friday, the total for the week is 35.
Coaches typically are designated a certain state, large area, or multiple cities and are responsible for visiting all of the high schools with prospects within those areas.
The spring evaluation period has been around forever, but technology is changing the way coaches recruit.
This week, I talked with coaches and staff recruiting personnel from Mississippi State, Purdue, North Carolina, Ball State, Colorado, Duke, Northwestern, and Arizona State about the technological advancements that are affecting recruiting.
The general mood is that technological advancements have accelerated the recruiting process, enabled more frequent communication between coaches and players, and made the overall process much more enjoyable for high school and college coaches.
The fact is coaches that aren't willing to learn about Twitter, Facebook, iPads, and iPhone probably won't last in the college coaching profession.
Gone are the days of coaches collecting game film and highlight reels on VHS tapes and DVD's from high school coaches that are trying to sell their prospects. Virtually everything is internet-based, now.
Arizona State wide receivers coach DelVaughn Alexander told me, "Right now, I might have 5 DVD's in my office. Five year ago, I had 500. It's all pretty much internet based, now. Last week, I was visiting with a high school coach who handed me a couple of DVD's of his prospects. I asked him if the clips were available on the internet, he immediately emailed them to me and I handed back the DVD's."
Purdue director of player personnel Paul Gonnella said, "We hardly even have to send out mailers anymore to put film on it to get it back. 95% of stuff is coming right off the internet."
"Technology has changed the game because it's hard to find an uncovered kid."
Mississippi State co-defensive coordinator / linebackers coach Geoff Collins said, "I follow some many recruiting services and high school coaches on twitter. If a kid gets offered, I'll find out almost immediately. It's amazing. In fact, some of these high schools are now even using Twitter or Facebook to publicize which college coaches are coming around on that particular day."
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