Signing Day coverage continues

As a team, <i></i> network and <i></i> are celebrating their fifth anniversary of National Signing Day coverage and doing so in typical fashion -– passionately, thoroughly and innovatively.

Football fans have come to expect nothing less.

Kirk McNair, the Executive Editor of both and the monthly magazine, 'BAMA: Inside the Crimson Tide, was a pioneer of recruiting coverage, providing photographs and details of Alabama recruits literally years before other state media caught on to its importance.

After briefly operating his website independently, McNair was one of the founding college publishers who joined together to form Internet sports network.

Of course founder, Jim Heckman, invented the national college recruiting database with the help of Student Sports, the exclusive operator of the Nike Football Training Camps, in 1998. Heckman eventually parlayed that database, along with contributions from the top recruiting experts and scouts in the country, plus partnerships with FOX and Yahoo!, into the first complete national online sports network.

That network folded under different leadership and its domain was purchased by another, much smaller company, but the original network team, led by Heckman, and including the original world-class engineering group, top executives, core recruiting group, top college team sites and all NFL team sites, as well as FOX and Yahoo, are back as and stronger than ever.

Operating on a cash-flow-positive basis, team covers its fifth National Signing Day with Scout, a national database that follows players from high school to the professional ranks and still has access to exclusive Nike Camp and Elite 11 Quarterback Camp data. The network is the official provider of recruiting coverage to and syndicates recruiting and team news to Yahoo!'s online coverage is supplemented by glossy print magazines, including the National Recruiting Yearbook, which is included free with annual online subscriptions and memorializes the information fans have been following all year.

That information has been served up by the leading experts and scouts in the industry – Jamie Newberg (National editor), Greg Biggins (West), David Garvin and Josh Clark (Big 12 / Heartland), Chris Fetters (Northwest), Scott Kennedy (Southeast), Mike Bakas (Big East / Northeast), Chris Pool (Midwest), Max Emfinger (National), Student Sports (operators of Nike Football and Elite 11 camps), Kevin Lustgarten (junior college), Tracy Pierson and Greg Hicks (West Coast basketball) and the nation's most knowledgeable and well-known college basketball scout, Dave Telep.

And of course Bama fans would hasten to add Freddie Kirby's name to that list. A long-time follower of football recruiting in and around Alabama, for years Kirby published Pigskin Preps, devoted to high school athletics in the Southeast. Those that know Kirby personally, are continually amazed at his encyclopedic knowledge of Crimson Tide recruiting both present and past.

Freddie Kirby now reports exclusively for and its print counterpart 'BAMA: Inside the Crimson Tide.

Because of exclusive access to Nike Football and Elite 11 quarterback camps, is the only network that offers authentic heights, weights and speeds. network is the only network that attends all major basketball tournaments; Telep and Pierson have first-hand knowledge of every top player in the country.

BamaMag Top Stories