Here are a couple of quotes on recruiting that I read today from Bret Bielema and Pat Fitzgerald that I wish would have been said by Tim Brewster.
Please understand, this is NOT a knock on Tim Brewster, and I sincerely mean that. I just think that these quotes are so on the money that I wish they came from our guy.
From Adam Rittenberg's ESPN blog:
"I'd rather be ranked at the end of the year than the start of the year, and the same thing holds true in recruiting. It doesn't really matter, coming in, how many stars you have behind your name. It's about what you do while you're there...
It was brought to my attention today, we're ranked by one recruiting service at 30th and another at 83rd. There's so many factors into this recruiting that are off-the-wall ridiculous."- Bret Bielema
"I don't cohabitate very well with prima donnas. The hat charade and the decommitting and the recommitting, I'm not looking to recruit those kind of young people. Those aren't the things that we believe in and value in our program. ... I don't really care what anybody ranks our class right now. They fit us, we believe in who they are, and more importantly, we trust our evaluation."- Pat Fitzgerald
"I don't want to win signing day. I want to win on Saturdays in the fall." - Pat Fitzgerald
From the Chicago Tribune:
"The spectacle that recruiting has become, I don't think it's very healthy for young men." - Pat Fitzgerald
"It's a very over-hyped process. If you were to re-rank recruiting classes three years down the road, you'd get a truer (sense) of what these young men mean at the collegiate level." - Pat Fitzgerald
From a personal standpoint, I have become very enamored with the recruiting process and rankings in the past couple of years since Tim Brewster has been our coach. This has more to do with the fact that recruiting was never even talked about before Brewster came here. But now that talking recruiting at Minnesota is more the norm and we're in the thick of the conversation every year, I see more and more that Bielema and Fitzgerald are right.
Look, I get it. Recruiting is of huge importance, but the recruiting services, the star rankings, the t.v. shows, narrowing your list down to 6 schools (6 SCHOOLS?!?!?!? Really?!?! Do you realize how crazy that is?)... now that I've been paying more attention to it, it really is a bit ridiculous.
The problem is, as fans, it's really the only thing that we have to go off of. Even with the world wide interweb we just can't follow high school football in Florida and Texas very closely, so we have to rely on people who do this for a living, and clearly it's not an exact science.
Eric Decker was a 2-star WR out of Ricori High School who chose the Gophers over... not OSU, not USC, not Florida... but St. John's University. Were the star-rankings wrong at the time? Maybe, maybe not. But the fact is Eric Decker turned out to be an absolute stud of a WR in major college football. The stars didn't tell anyone that would happen.