Random Thoughts:On "Tough" Recruiting

He probably didn't know it, but when the Georgia Tech Athletic Director announced the contract extension for their coach, Chan Gaily, he "dissed" most of the other colleges in the country with high academic standards...

News Item:
Dave Braine [AD at Georgia Tech] was quoted today in USA Today :
Braine said high academic standards make Tech one of the three toughest jobs in the nation for a football coach. Braine named Army and Notre Dame as the other toughest jobs.

Due to those standards, Braine said Gailey can't be expected to compete for championships every season.
-- USA Today
OK Mr. Braine. You're giving your coach a pass on 4 straight 4-4 conference seasons [Tech is presently 6-3 overall] because your academic requirements are so high.

Those of us who follow recruiting know that Notre Dame seems to find good talent very easily, even today. I've always suspected its because they have a recruiter in every town with a Roman Catholic church, but Charlie Weis hasn't had any problem getting recruits.

Army, Navy and Air Force all have the same issues - its hard to go pro with a 4-6 year obligation to serve required first. Roger Staubach, and another guy named Napoleon are the only two Navy guys I know who actually made a good career out of the NFL. But the Army guys know, its hard to practice football in a Humvee in Bagdad.

Just up the road Raleigh, the entrance requirements and the academic burdens at Duke seem to be just as strict for football players, and despite some of our fans desires for a Big 10 championship every year, most old time Northwestern fans are happy just to see a winning [or even a .500] season in any Wildcat sport because our pool of HS players is less than 25% of the possible Div I recruits.

Of course Mr. Braine is justifying paying Mr. Gaily a million a year when he hasn't produced the big winner required by some of those big Tech alumni.

And Tech is mired in the middle of the Atlantic Coast conference, where football, outside of Clemson, Miami, Florida State and lately Virginia Tech, is sometimes considered just a tuneup for the Basketball season, but I think his comments do a disservice to all the other Div I schools with high academic standards, who have to travel the country chasing athletes with SAT scores over 1200, and Div I talents.

Yes, he's at a school that has a "tech" as part of its name - but gee, that doesn't seem to scare the kids who go to #7 Virginia "Tech" or #19 Texas "Tech" now, does it?
-- da Coach
[NU Graduate, 1974]

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