I was laying in the hospital last Thursday when the NCAA Board of Directors did exactly what Oklahoma State football head coach Mike Gundy said they would do, repeal the rules banning satellite camps. It took me a few minutes on Monday speaking to a reporter and friend that wanted a satellite camp definition and explanation to realize why satellite camps are good and why we need them.
“If we truly care about kids and what's best for them, and giving them great opportunities, I think (overturning the ban) is something we have to look at,” KU head coach David Beaty said a few weeks ago to the Big 12 media on the spring teleconference for football coaches. “I do think it hurts kids at the end of the day.”
I already knew of new Iowa State coach Matt Campbell, who used satellite camps in the MAC while coaching at Toledo.
“My comments have been very strongly against (the ban),” Campbell said on the teleconference. “Not so much as a disadvantage for our program or programs in general, but I think it's just a severe disadvantage for young people.”
Gundy said some similar stuff. But Gundy, who had his staff on the cutting edge of using the camps while teaming up with Mary Hardin-Baylor University in Belton, Texas for the last seven years, had it right. It corrects a population and football prospect geography issue that can’t be corrected otherwise.
Gundy has long thought it popular to use a compass and draw a circle, 300 miles around Austin, Texas, Waco, Texas, Fort Worth and TCU. He would say count up the football players in that area. Now do the same around Stillwater, Manhattan, Kansas, or Ames, Iowa. Not the same, not really close in total number of football-playing high school students.
Now is that Oklahoma State’s fault? No. Is it Baylor’s doing that they have so many? Again, no. With satellite camps, Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Iowa State, and Texas Tech, even located way out in West Texas, can come to the cities and get around more football playing high school prospects.
Satellite camps are good for young people, and more will be seen, but schools will see more and that is correcting a population and geography issue. Get out your compass and check it out.