Recruiting: How The Evaluation Process Works

Now is a good time to refresh your memory on how the evaluation period works. The evaluation weeks began last week with some coaches starting on junior colleges, as they have to be hit earlier as they are already in spring football and most finish up their spring practices before May 1. The only exception is with many West Coast junior colleges that have spring practice go later into May.

I will add this recruiting note at the top. Give Texas A&M some credit as I think that was a major coup the Aggies pulled off with the pledges of the Anderson twins of Mineola, Texas. It's not often that you can get twin offensive linemen and there is no slouch in the pair. Those are both very good football players. I really felt whatever school was able to land both of them, and they had said that it was no guarantee that they would stay together, that would be a big-time recruiting victory.

There are plenty of victories out there and Oklahoma State sends out a combined staff that is veteran. With offensive line coach Greg Adkins, running back coach Marcus Arroyo, and Cowboy backs coach Jason McEndoo, OSU sends some fresh faces to hit the recruiting trail.

I did not count Dan Hammerschmidt in that group as being at Houston he has been recruiting the region and hits the ground running with contacts in place. I think it can be very effective to send fresh faces out there.

Director of recruiting Johnny Barr knows quite well where to send coaches and has a very good intuition about where to assign new ones. He and assistant Mike Groce do a good job of laying the ground work in assisting the OSU coaches with information before they hit the highways and airways.

It also helps to have six commitments including the flagship class quarterback in Nick Starkel out of Argyle (Liberty Christian), Texas. Starkel said in an interview that he was ready to talk with other prospects and help point them to being on his team for the future in Stillwater.

The way Oklahoma State does it in the spring is coaches each get a list of high schools in Oklahoma and then a geographic region in Texas.

It reminds you of the way major league baseball operates its scouting departments as they have geographic regions for scouts and then a group of cross checkers that insure the right kids are being seen and moving up the ladder. Each coach is responsible for his schools in Oklahoma and his region in Texas and when the staff gets back together then they go over players. Think Animal House in rush, minus the throwing of fruits and vegetables.

Camp literature and mailers are constantly going out to prospects and the coaches of those players are reminded by Oklahoma State coaches and the coaches at many schools to encourage those players to attend the camps. Attending the camps is the best way to find out about a school and the best way for the college coaches to get good evaluation time on and off the field with a prospect.

The evaluation period is followed by that camp period. When the camp period is over, a good goal would be for Oklahoma State to have hit 10 or more commitments. At this point the recruiting has gradually and almost totally shifted from coaches recruiting by schools (in Oklahoma) and regions (in Texas) to coaches actually recruiting the prospects, either offered or under top consideration, at the position they coach.

It is a simple but effective way for the staff to get multiple eyes on players and have several coaches familiar with the each prospect as the evaluation process unfolds.

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