Nearly three weeks ago the NCAA put it's foot down on college football program's hosting camps away from campus, most commonly known as satellite camps.
The governing body's decision to bring the practice to an end was met with criticism from head coaches across the country. WKU head coach Jeff Brohm was among the many to express disappointment in the decision.
"We always enjoyed the reach that our satellite camps have provided us across the region," Brohm said following the ruling on April 9. "They allowed more players to interact with not only our own coaches and staff, but to interact with coaches from other programs in our area. We will continue to explore all options to ensure players have every opportunity to gain exposure to college coaches."
Last spring, Brohm and his staff conducted three satellite camps, beginning in Shelbyville, Ky., before traveling to Gallitin, Tenn., and capping it off in Paducah, Ky. Members of coaching staffs from Eastern Kentucky, Kentucky Wesleyan and Lindsey-Wilson, and former Michigan and Louisville defensive coordinator Ron English, were among the coaches that joined the Hilltoppers staff in working with more than 700 athletes.
In addition to the many in-state players that attended, prospects came from multiple states throughout the region, including Missouri, Ohio, Indiana, South Carolina, North Carolina and Florida.
If proved fruitful for many, helping prospects gain additional exposure to multiple colleges. It also resulted in future WKU commitments, including the first pledge in the first 2016 class in Frankfort, Ky., athlete Anthony Robinson and eventually led to the signing of quarterback Steven Duncan.
"We want to make sure that in these areas there is no stone unturned,” Jeff Brohm told WKUInsider following last season's camp in Gallatin, Tenn. “We work hard at that, we get to know coaches, we get to know the players, we get to see them in person. I like to see them perform and it makes a big difference.”
On Thursday, the NCAA had a change of mind and reinstated the ability for colleges to hold satellite camps. Almost immediately upon the announcement, returned the satellite camp information to WKUSports.com. The NCAA will continue to evaluate to the practice, along with the entire recruiting process, but the camps are back for now.
NCAA Board of Directors chair Harris Pastides said in a released statement, “The Board of Directors is interested in a holistic review of the football recruiting environment, and camps are a piece of that puzzle.”
Scout's National Director of Recruiting Brandon Huffman, who visits with recruits on a daily basis, applauded the NCAA's decision to once again allow satellite camps.
"This had really thrown a wrench into the plans of the recruits who had hoped to use the satellite camps to maximize their exposure with limited resources," he said. "Now, they still have the chance to perform in front of coaches. This really helps those that don’t have unlimited resources to travel plus those prospects who live in hard-to-find places, giving them a chance to workout in one central location for a particular staff or a number of staffs, depending on the venue. But it’s a win and the student-athlete benefits greatly, which is what should have been the focus from the get-go."
In addition to its on-campus camps, WKU will visit the same locations as it did in 2015, beginning at Shelbyville (Ky.) Collins on June 9th. WKU will visit Gallatin, Tenn., on June 13 and McCracken County in Paducah, Ky., on June 14.