|Swinney says new recruiting rules will further separate haves and have-nots|
|by David Hood - Senior Writer - Thursday, February 7, 2013 1:59 PM||
CLEMSON – The NCAA and the Division I Board of Directors opened up the proverbial can of worms late last month with proposals that will deregulate the rule-book concerning college recruiting, and Clemson head coach Dabo SwinneyDabo Swinney
View Full Profile said Wednesday that the Clemson program is at a crossroads.
Do they want to be a major power, or just a pretty good program?
The 18-member panel of college presidents passed 25 of 26 proposals, all submitted by the Rules Working Committee and supported by the Division I Legislative Council, to deregulate the rulebook. The proposals are set to become bylaws on August 1st of this year.
However, the part of the legislation that concerns recruiting will have a considerable effect on college coaches, recruits, recruits’ families and high school coaches.
Proposal 13-3 removes restrictions on numerical limitations and modes of recruiting communication, including text messaging. Starting with the Class of 2014, college coaches can call, text and communicate privately by any methods available without restrictions. If a coach wants to call a recruit 10 times a day, he can. If he wants to send 20 text messages, he is allowed to do so.
Swinney said the new rules will drastically alter the college football landscape, and will further separate the programs that have extra money to spend from the programs on a limited budget.
“I think Clemson is one of those programs that are going to have to make a decision on the direction we want to go. Do we want to continue to be elite, or will we be satisfied with being just pretty good? Because the rules are going to drastically change the way business is done,” Swinney said. “It is something I have seen coming for a couple of years. Basically, they have deregulated everything. And so, everybody can spend their money wherever they want to spend it. What’s gonna happen is these major programs – and we certainly have the wherewithal here – are going to create personnel departments. It’s just that simple.”
Swinney said that the new regulations state that any person “in the building” can recruit for the program.
“Everybody can recruit. Everybody in your building can recruit,” he said. “I’ve got some pretty quality people here already that can’t leave the building, but they can get back to recruiting. That would be great for Brad Scott to get back on the phone, and Woody McCorvey. Those are some pretty established guys. But you are going to have programs that have huge, enormous support staff and a lot of finance committed to that support staff. Not a little finance – a lot of it. Now those guys are all going to be able to recruit.
“Everybody will be calling, everybody is evaluating, everybody is calling, and everybody is texting because there is no limit on communication. It’s going to be crazy. That is probably the area that will change the most – the personnel side of it. And people will have to decide if they want to compete like that or not. Not everybody is going to be able to do that. That will make the gap bigger between the haves and the have nots. I am glad I am in a place like Clemson because we can definitely compete, but we are going to have to do things to keep up.”
College football coaches are not exactly known for holding back, and most push the rules to the breaking point. The sport is a high-dollar business, with substantial salaries on the line, and allowing a competitive coach to be able to contact a prospect as many times as he likes isn’t necessarily good for the prospect.
“I have a lot of friends, thank goodness. We might have a big win, and I might get 200 text messages, which is great,” Swinney said. “For these prospects, that will be all day, every day. It will never stop. You don’t have to take somebody’s call, but the texts messages will never stop.”
In addition to using staff that is already on campus and available to help recruit, Swinney said new hires will have to be made.
“You are going to have these personnel departments, and all they are going to do is sit there and there they go with calling and texting,” he said. “We need a full-time marketing person and a full time design person. You are going to have to go to somebody and say, ‘I need a poster done for this guy and I need it done tonight.’ The amount of money that is going to be spent on this is going to be enormous. There are no rules where we are headed, and it is going to be quite a ride. We are definitely going to have to compete in all those areas.”
He was asked if there were any parts of the new rules package that he likes, and he said only where it concerns a player that has already given a verbal commitment.
“It will be nice that once you get a guy that is committed, you will be able to call him and text him,” he said. “That will be nice. But I really don’t like all of the other stuff. I don’t think it’s good for the kids and I don’t think it’s good for the coaches. The personnel changes? I love that, because we are one of the ‘haves’ schools. Hopefully we can separate ourselves from some others because we have more manpower and personnel.”
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