FanShot

Telep on recruiting

It's an ESPN insider article (sorry to those who aren't insiders) that provides a clearer image of what the Coaches are up against. If you wonder why GU doesn't get top 50 recruits, maybe this is an explaination. "...What follows is a glimpse behind the curtain to show you how the dirty deeds are done. Money enters the recruiting game in different ways, so programs have many ways to flaunt the rules in pursuit of high-profile recruits. To be clear, it's my opinion that not everyone is cheating. And the evidence I've seen suggests that the unsavory parts of the modern recruiting process hover at the top with elite-level recruits. These elite-level recruits can be classified into three types of players: 1. A clean recruit: With these kids, the playing field is level. Outside of the traditional recruiting pitch and salesmanship of the program, everyone has the same chance to land him. 2. Agent/runner-influenced: In this type of recruitment, at some point it will become clear that someone behind the scenes is financially taking care of the player and his family. Although programs may not need to provide any of their money to sign him, they must decide whether pursuing him is worth the cost of NCAA sanctions should the agent/runner involvement ever come to light. 3. Recruits who seek an inducement: These are basically pay-for-play performers. As you might have guessed, it's types 2 and 3 that are concerning for the current health of college basketball, and they've changed the nature of high school player evaluation. In addition to scouting the player on the court, teams must evaluate the people on his periphery. They need to know who's in the kid's ear. If there seems to be any agent influence or a handler or family member looking for handouts, odds are you'll have to get your hands dirty to earn his commitment. At most levels of college basketball, recruits are clean. Low, mid-major and many high-major programs don't play the inducement game. The low and mid-major levels are where the best natural evaluating is done. At this level, coaches have the best chance of matching style of play with the ideals on which their program was founded. If you're a good coach with a keen eye in a decent league, you can win and use evaluation as a tool to get ahead. When the playing field is level and it's all about basketball, as it is with a clean recruit, a coach can feel good about his job. There's a reason that Brad Stevens is still at Butler and Shaka Smart remained at VCU; they don't have to play games when it comes to recruiting. Move up a level, and all bets are off."

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