Coaches Recap (Part 4)

Central Michigan - Florida State

Central Michigan (Dan Enos): One thing I do want to say is this, that all of these recruits are ours. They are all in our family. They are all CMU football players. There is no separation at all. We are excited about all of these young men.

If we can redshirt them all, we would like to do that.  But, sometimes you can't keep a guy off the field. If they can be physically ready to play, they may get in and contribute early. These young men will have a lot on their plate and we don't want to put unrealistic expectations on them.

Cincinnati (Butch Jones): Recruiting is all about people.  First impressions. In our process, there are no promises and no guarantees. 

This class will be judged 3 or 4 years from now.  We take great pride in development.  We wanted to work within a 100 mile radius of Cincinnati. 17 were elected as high school team captains.

I believe we have the best academic support in the country.  That was evident throughout the process. 

Clemson (Dabo Swinney): On defense, we signed two ends that we couldn't be more pleased with. They could have gone to Alabama, Georgia, Florida or Auburn. They have gone anywhere in the SEC or ACC. Anywhere. Corey Crawford and Tavaris Barnes- great young men and tremendous family situations. They will be special ends here- mark that down.

Also want to thank all of our coaches. They are a special group of men. Daric Riley, Wes Goodwin, Donte Harris and Justin Stepp. Woody McCrovey, Don Hymel, Truck, Andy Johnston - it's a true team effort. Our secretaries- Beth and Jen and Ren and Jill- they are incredible support for us. Joey Batson and our weight room staff, nobody does it better.

Want to finish it with this - cannot say enough about the job that Jeff Scott did. Let me tell you - he's a great football coach and a young coach who has a tremendous future in front of him. He's one of those guys if you give him something- watch out. He took this thing and ran with it. Give him a little direction and buddy he is relentless. He did a great job with his leadership role.

Very proud of him. He put his heart and soul into everything he was doing. He's smart, detailed and organized. He's a man of high and high integrity.

Colorado (Dan Hawkins): Athletically, top to bottom they might be the most athletic class we have had.  Most of the guys play other positions, play both ways, have the ability to play different things, play multiple sports which is getting harder in this day of age because they want you to specify on one sport.  A lot of multiple sport guys, track guys, basketball guys, baseball guys, I think that is very good.  So there is a tremendous amount of athleticism and flexibility.

I am sure many of you have seen the movie the Blindside and have been very touched by it -it is a great movie, but, this is going on everywhere in America.  That is going on in a lot of college programs, and a lot of high school programs across the country. 

This will be the first year I think that we have been really close to having 85 guys on scholarship.  The top number before was 77 so that is always a good thing.  It is also good that we have a little bit of room at the top and I like that again just because: A; if you have a walk-on guy that really tears it up in spring ball, or maybe you find another kid in the spring so having a little bit of room in there is great but we are getting really close to topping out at 85.  Like I said as we look at the numbers across the board, I think which every coach aspires to get to, you try to get X amount of tight ends and X amount of quarterbacks and those numbers are starting to play out how we want them to so all of that is good.

(On recruiting rankings) -  It is interesting, does it mean something? Yeah.  Does it mean everything? No.  Part of the thing that makes college football great, I was listening to the radio this morning and they were talking about what a cultural phenomenon the Super Bowl is and how it is such an industry in and of itself, apart from the NFL, I think the recruiting industry is very huge and you have a lot of fingers in the pie and part of that is great and draws attention to it, but it is a very inexact science and I have said this many time before, last year's Super Bowl there were five Steelers and two Cardinals that were ranked in the top 150 of their positions coming out of high school-only seven players in the Super Bowl last year.  You look at the Colts and they have three walk-ons on their roster, Dallas Clark being one of them.  So for me I think that's the nature of it.  That is why I say it is important that you get the right guys and the guys that fit your needs, university and program.   If you do that, that is what it's about -getting the right guys."

Colorado State (Steve Fairchild): This particular class covers a wide range geographically. Eleven are from the state of Florida and eight are from the state of Texas. That is where we were able to shore up the bulk of this class. Three were from the state of Colorado, which will always be our primary focus. We will do as well as we can in-state and then go far and wide from there to fill out the class. We had three from California, which normally in the past has been a very good area for us and we will continue to try and make it that. Two were from the state of Washington; I believe they were both top-20 players in the state. Then, obviously one from Oklahoma; we believe we got a very good player the year before from Oklahoma and we got one again this year. So, geographically we were fairly spread out, but we obviously did a good job in Florida and Texas.

(On recruiting rankings) - Well, I've said every year that I could care less. If a guy has five stars and I don't think he's a very good player, or very good student, or has very good character, or what have you - there's a lot more to this equation than just stars - we're not recruiting them. Now if a guy has just one star but I like him and I think he's a good person and I think he's going to get a degree and I think he's a good character kid, then we'll recruit him. I don't want the guy who dictates the stars to dictate our future. I want to make that decision myself.

UCONN (Randy Edsall): We are better received outside the state of CT than inside the state of CT in certain pockets.  That's tough to say, but it's true.  It is amazing.

Edsall seems frustrated with many in-state high school coaches


(On recruiting rankings) - This is all very stupid in my opinion.  For anybody to go out and rank classes and to try to evaluate thousands and thousands and thousands of kids that are 17 and 18 years old and to sit there and watch all this film and put a number on them, it's propaganda.  It's one of the things that is really ruining the game in my opinion.  Football, basketball, women's sports, everything.  It's ruining kids, is what it's doing.  I am hope some people come to their senses pretty soon and does something about the recruiting process because we are in this to help young people...and this process is not helping young people, it's hurting them.  Until that message gets across, it's not going to get better, it's only going to get worse.  You don't see people going back after 4 or 5 years and ranking those recruiting classes.  It's not where you are when you come in here, it's where you end up.  Do you end up with a degree?  Do you end up as a better player and better person...those are the things that are important.  Not all this publicity to announce where a kid is going to play a sport.  It's gotten out of hand, in my opinion.


Duke (David Cutcliffe): We spent our morning instead of staring at the fax machine; we got in about 5 hours of evaluations for 2011. 

We signed 9 young men out of the North Carolina ranks.  We really addressed needs.  When we came in, I made the statement, "If you can run, we are going to find you."  10 guys are 4.5 or less in our class.  We sought 4 three hundred pounders - 2 on offense and 2 on defense.  We needed edge pass rushers and were able to get 4 pass rushing defensive linemen. 

I don't concern myself with ratings.  When you watch tape, it's one thing.  You will be shocked if you looked at the Pro Bowl and see where those guys were rated coming out.

There is a new language in recruiting...

Soft verbal... is that whispering that you are coming (laughs)? (Pause)... I'm going to start trying some "soft offers" (laughs).

"Decommit"...where you ever committed? 

I don't want a commitment that wants to shop.  I tell them that. 

(On recruiting rankings) - I think it's fun.  It's a spectator sport.  There are 5 stars that should be 5 stars, but you don't always know what's in their heart.  There are "combine kings."  I've seen 2 stars that commit to certain teams...all of a sudden they are 4 stars. 

I'm not anti (recruiting rankings).  I don't begrudge it.  It's not all a science.  Think about all the bad draft choices.  There was supposedly an argument at one time... Peyton Manning or Ryan Leaf.  Think about that.  How hard is that?

East Carolina (Ruffin McNeil): The positions that we really have to key on in recruiting now are duel-threat players who can be offensively or defensively productive in the systems we will now implement here. We want a guy who is a quarterback and might also be able to help us at wide receiver, which is what Michael Crabtree, who we had at Texas Tech, did.

I'm very pleased with the dual capabilities of a lot of these signees. I'm very happy with that balance.

I caught a lot of planes, rental cars and taxis while staying in a lot of hotels. I also ate a lot of lunches. Everybody seemed to want to feed me. Everybody was very courteous to me.

Probably the scariest thing was one day trying to remember what state and city I was in. I called Coach Holland that day and told him I forgot where I was. Still, it was a fun challenge. It was a whirlwind, but I knew what to expect having been around it for a little bit. Every home was receptive and every kid was excited. That made the trips a lot easier.

Comparing the recruits is very similar to Texas Tech. Offensively, we fit the mold and defensively, I know what we need. We have those guys on defense who fit the rangy, athletic, change-of-direction and play-making mold.

Eastern Michigan (Ron English): The real reality of recruiting is evaluating.  We have done a good job evaluating.

I am pleased that we didn't take marginal guys.  We also saved 2 scholarships for later on.  I like big guys, big lineman. 

We do wish we had another quarterback. 

We can't afford to take the 2nd, 3rd, 4th's in Michigan.  We did offer 8 players in Michigan, but we only got one.  I do think in the future, you will see more Michigan kids on our roster.

Florida (Urban Meyer): A big part of the product, which we make sure not to overlook, is the current players on our team. I've seen it destroy a recruiting class and I've seen it basically build a recruiting class.

I've gotten myself in trouble in the past by hyping up players who were not yet deserving of it. But I'm not sure I've seen a defensive front as good as this one.

In the last few years, we have made perhaps the strongest push in our program to focus on life after academics. They see the emphasis we place on not just the four years spent at Florida, but the time after graduation. I've never seen an effort like what our staff and the Office of Student Life places on Recruiting Roundtables and job affairs. As a parent, that's appealing.

Florida Atlantic (Howard Schnellenberger): This has been an unusual year due to the fact that we just had a few spots available under the maximum scholarship limits. It is one of the strongest classes and we may add more as time goes by.

FIU (Mario Christobal): Signing day 2010; I'm not sure if it's over yet, there might be some late additions. The most important thing with every signing class is that you're looking to fill needs. You're looking to better yourself at several positions and make sure that you're continuing to improve at certain positions and then you start getting the players that now fit into the schemes you're trying to run.

Florida State (Jimbo Fisher): I think that's a negative when you just say a guy is this or a guy is that. I think it's better when it says 'football player.' Because 'football player' tells me he can do a lot of things. He can run. He has size. He can be physical. He can play offense. He can play defense. He can play special teams. And I think all of those guys can do that. And you never know where you're going to end up.

They'll all play where they want to play in the beginning - what we promised them to play. But I like to get guys that have the ability to adapt and play different positions. So you're not dead (if they struggle at their current position).

Speed with space players with range and length, we did well there. We also got the #1 JUCO corner in the country and #1 high school corner in the country.

I think developing is key.  We talk about recruiting, but we don't talk enough about developing.
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