Flood Talks Importance of Big Recruiting Day

PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Rutgers has dozens of unofficial visitors on campus today, and Scarlet Knights coach Kyle Flood gave his philosophy on why the day is important to the program.

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – While many schools are hosting official visitors this weekend and trying to finalize a recruiting class, Rutgers will have dozens upon dozens of underclassmen on campus.

Included in Saturday's group are some of the top prospects in the region, with the headliners being four-star quarterback Caleb Henderson of Lake Braddock Secondary in Burke, Va., and Paramus (N.J.) Catholic High four-star cornerback Jabrill Peppers.

"We like to do it this weekend for a couple of reasons," Rutgers coach Kyle Flood said. "One, we generally haven't used it as an official visit weekend so we have the ability to do it. So if we have a chance to do it, we want to do it. And it gives us an opportunity, in most cases, to be first and make a good first impression.

"Then, when they travel around to see other places, they have Rutgers University as something to compare them to, and we always felt when compared, we would fare very well."

NCAA rules prohibit coaches from speaking about prospects before they sign binding national letters of intent, so Flood spoke about the philosophy and importance of such a day, and did not speak about specific players.

However, the day will be monumental in shaping the 2014 recruiting class as it will be the first chance many of the prospects and their families tour the facilities, receive academic presentations and watch practice.

And with the recruiting calendar sped up, and recruits making decisions earlier in the process, hosting so many high-level prospects is important.

"Every year it seems to get a little bit earlier," Flood said. "We've got guys in our program, guys like Betim Bujari, who committed very early to us in the process and part of that was his ability to come out and really know the product, really know what Rutgers is all about academically, athletically, from a support staff point of view.

"I think it's critical for the certain players that want to decide early, you have to give them a chance to see everything."

Flood also said getting a high number of prospects to visit campus suggests the wealth of talent with the school's recruiting base.

"It really speaks to two things that we see as a real advantage to us," he said. "Our proximity to the state of Rutgers, to be able to get the top recruits and the top players within a four-hour radius on campus for the day where they can go home the same day, and it kind of minimizes the costs for them, I think that's really important.

"And then going to the seventh bowl game in eight years, I think these bowl practices are great opportunities for these players to come out and see our campus, meet with our academic people and academic support and see our great facilities. And also it gives them a chance to be around our coaches while they are coaching, to see exactly what the environment is going to be like when they get here as a player.

"I think it is one thing to do it in the classroom, but when they can come out and watch it live on the field, it's invaluable."

For a list of prospects set to attend, click here.

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