Recruiting, the elephant in the room.
Since this blog's inception(2009), the #1 HOT BUTTON topic has been recruiting. The vitriol is mainly directed at a particular school in the Huron League. Because of course, that is the league this blog has covered before expansion.
I saw a recent post on Facebook which prompted me to write this. My goal is to offer some points and counterpoints. I would also love to hear what others have to say about the topic.
There is a general feeling out there, that private schools have an unfair advantage in finding talent, particularly in the sports arena(it seems that's all anybody cares about). If a student transfers to join a great band and so on, nobody cares.
Now, I am not saying there is an advantage and I am not saying there is not an advantage. The fact is for me, I just don't know. Let me ask you this, is it the perceived advantage that gets everyone all riled up or is it that the private school wins? If said private school went 3-6 in football every year would you still cry foul? I contest that you wouldn't. But because the school is great in a particular sport and goes 7-2 or better with regularity, then there must be a problem.
Does recruiting even happen? Honestly I have no idea. I would assume it does, but I contest it happens at private AND public schools all the same.
I am close to a particular situation with 3 individuals that went to a school that I associate with. One individual, his parents went to Monroe High, as did his brothers. He was a many time varsity letter winner, ALL-STATE, plays college football and held a 4.3 GPA.
Another individual, his parents attended Monroe and SMA. His Father lives in Ida and brother attended there. Three sport varsity letter winner All-League in 2 sports and held a 3.6 GPA.
Individual 3, his parents live in the Bedford school district and his brother attended Bedford. 3 Sport varsity letter winner, ALL-STATE and plays college football.
I know for a fact that none of the individuals above were contacted by SMCC, where they ended up going to school. All 3 were superb in athletics and easily could have gone to another school. None of them were spoken to by anyone affiliated with SMCC. None were given scholarships. They chose to go to SMCC all for different reasons. The parents all left it up to the child and they chose to go to CC. How do I know all this, again I am very close to the situation.
If these 3 were not approached, then I have no idea who would be.
As I said before, if recruiting or "cajoling" if you will, happens at private schools then it most certainly happens at public schools as well. I mean, don't private schools have to recruit students just to survive?
There are many public schools out there who stand out to me at being "guilty" of this. Here are three.
-Ithaca- the Yellow Jackets had won 69 games in a row on their way to 5 consecutive state titles and now have 6. Nobody in their surrounding area even has a pulse in football. I am talking 20 plus schools. Yet Ithaca is the strongest program in the state currently. Multiple D1 quarterbacks along with multiple all-state players. Again, nobody around them can find a way to scrape up 4 wins. You can make up your own mind if that seems fishy.
-River Rouge- the Panthers have kids from all over the Detroit area transferring in. Their school buses go deep into the city. Many good at football. very good. Prior to 2012(62 years)they had won 1 playoff game, since 2012 they are 51-9 and have won 11 playoff games, with a finals birth. Is something going on here? You be the judge.
-Saline- the Hornets, same situation as Rouge. Kids transferring in, many good at football. Prior to 2012(62 years) they have 4 playoff wins, since 2012 they are 53-8 with 11 playoff wins.
There are rumblings dealing with all 3 of these schools, that they are bringing in kids just to play football. Is it wrong? I'm not sure it is.
All three of these schools are well coached, Hessbrook, Parker and Palka are proven winners and kids want to play for them. Parents want to send their kids there to win and get recognized at the college level. Again, is it wrong?
I'll stop there and end with this. I do not know if recruiting happens and if it does, I am not sure it is wrong. But if it does happen, it happens at both private and public schools. The bottom line to me is, get a good coach and you will win, one way or another. period end of story.
I'd love to hear your thoughts.