Edsall Keeps Recruiting Under the Radar

Randy Edsall has always been steadfast in his attempts to keep UConn's recruiting strategy a secret. What can you say? Some coaches just feel more comfortable flying under the radar.

With only scholarships officially available this winter, based on nine scholarship players graduating from the program after the 5-6 season of 2005, Edsall appeared to have just about reached the limit this week when Waterford offensive tackle Zach Hurd became the eighth high school senior to make an oral commitment to UConn (Bristol tight end Aaron Hernandez, don't forget, counts toward the 2007 recruiting class).

That seemingly left Edsall with about six weeks to fill one last scholarship. But the eighth-year coach refuses to be tied down to a specific limit.

"I don't know," Edsall coyly replied when asked how many scholarships he had left to offer. "I don't know … We're going to keep recruiting. We'll keep recruiting as long as there's players out there that I want in our program."

Numbers other than nine are coming into play, it turns out.

"We weren't at the 85 this year when we started," said Edsall, referring to the maximum number of scholarship players a Division I-A program can have. "There's always attrition, some way, somehow. The bottom line is, you never have to be at 85 until August. That's what I base it on --- where we're going to be in August, not where we're at in February. It doesn't matter how many you sign. It's just that you've got to be at 85 in August."

Two dates loom large for UConn. Feb. 1 is national signing day, but before that comes Jan. 16. That morning, the team will meet with its head coach before starting the spring semester on campus the next day. That meeting usually produces a surprise or two for Edsall when he counts heads and comes up a few shorter than he expected.

"Somebody might call and say they're not coming back," Edsall said.

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