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Some comments on recruiting

  • No offense to Urban Meyer, but Ohio state can get a 4 star recruit even if one of their coaches loudly farts on the mom's living room couch and say's "I smell my lunch", while laughing!

    This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by CrestHawk69 17 months ago

  • You need to get beyond your feeble excuses. Iowa has more people than Mississippi, Arkansas, Nebraska and West Virginia. It has a bigger stadium than any of the BCS schools in those states except Nebraska. If Ole Miss's Hugh Freeze, a guy who up until last Wednesday was best known as Michael Oher's high school coach (that's the kid in The Blind Side) can reel in a Top 10 class competing against the likes of Alabama, LSU, TAMU, UGA, Florida, and Arkansas, why can't Iowa bring in a Top 30 class? Especially since Ferentz has done it before? And not just in 2005. Rivals ranked Iowa's 2011 class 30th. 247 ranked it 31st. Scout ranked it 25th with four 4-stars and 17 3-stars. I don't think it's unreasonable for Ferentz to put together a class like that every year. Why do you?

    No one's expecting Iowa to outrecruit Ohio State but why not try? Why roll over and just settle for the scraps? Meyer can't take everyone and as I've pointed out, Ohio's 2014 class is up for grabs. Ohio kids that Tressel would have taken, Meyer is not. And that's my point.

    Moreover, not every kid wants to play at a school with 50,000 students in a metropolitan area of 1.5 million people. 2012 4-star Joey O'Connor just transferred from Ohio State to Colorado State because the school is too big. Tuscaloosa isn't a big town. Nor are Auburn, Athens, Gainesville, Fayetteville, Oxford, Starkville, College Station--all are college towns like Iowa City. My kid will be a freshman at Iowa in the fall. I've been on the campus a dozen times. It's a great school, great campus, and it has a solid athletic reputation.

    But, no, you'd rather just surrender Iowa to mediocrity. I don't understand how you can call yourself a Hawkeye fan because it's not common sense. It's defeatism, which is the acceptance of defeat without struggle, of refusing to fight because a person thinks that the fight is lost, of thinking that defeat is not only imminent, it is actually preferred over victory. Defeatism sums up your attitude. It's something you've come to expect and accept. It's a loser attitude. And that's sad.

    I am an Ohio State fan through and through but I also want my kid to have a great college experience and I believe a big part of that comes from school pride, and a big part of that is derived from athletic excellence.

  • I think you're half right. Meyer's not recruiting the Midwest. That's Michigan's strategy, which was Tressel's strategy. Of the Midwest kids who left for the SEC, the only ones we really wanted were Alex Anzalone and Ethan Pocic. Meyer recruited Robert Foster, Laquon Treadwell and Elijah Daniel but stopped because they don't have the kind of character he wants. All you have to do is find the Twitter pic of Treadwell holding a handful of cash after he committed to Ole Miss or find Foster's twitter from last summer where he bitched about having to get up early on a Saturday morning to make a weekend visit to Ohio State. Meyer dropped him like a rock.

    But you're right about the part that his motivation is self-serving. It's easy to read between the lines. He wants parity in the B1G but only among the other 13 schools. He fully intends to run roughshod on the conference because beating the crap out of better B1G schools will raise OSU's credibility with the selection committee. The better the B1G, the tougher OSU's SOS and RPI will be, which increases the odds Ohio State will make the playoffs.

  • Urban cares very much about recruiting as long as he's getting the meat off the bone first. However, missing from this whole discussion is the sea change in recruiting rules the NCAA just announced that will make recruiting a bidding war for High school sophomores by professional recruiting staffs. If there are any real or perceived disparities in recruiting now, wait until these recruiting staffs, limited by the dollar amount the respective schools allow, are underway.

    Former college coach Gerry DiNardo, a Big Ten Network analyst, called the NCAA decisions “ridiculous.”

    “You have to have money just go get a seat at the table,” DiNardo said of the pressure for programs to spend more to land top talent. “That doesn’t mean you’ll win anything, that just means you’ll be able to play.” could mean the most talented players will receive calls and texts all day and all night without end.

    “We have serious concerns whether these proposals, as currently written, are in the best interest of high school student-athletes, their families and their coaches,” the statement from Big Ten coaches and athletic directors stated. “We are also concerned about the adverse effect they would have on college coaches, administrators and university resources.”

    Kirk Ferentz compared the impact to the financial haves and have-nots in professional baseball.

    “My fear, in simplistic terms, would be that, I hate to see college football or college athletics become Major League Baseball — with all respect to Major League Baseball,” Ferentz said. The Yankees start in the inside lane every year. They have the biggest payroll, so they get to start on the inside lane.”

    Let the games begin!

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  • As noted in another thread, Urban Meyer and Brady Hoke have both gone on record opposing many of the recruiting rule changes.

  • Ferentz also commented in his normal fashion that he hasnt really read much about the new rules yet. Basically saying he will have someone explain it to him. Now I dont believe that he doesnt keep up on these types of things, but it does get annoying hearing KF talk himself and his program down all the time. He doesnt text or fb or tweet. As a man I feel its pretty cool that he is old school, but it puts Iowa at a disadvantage recruiting wise.

    We are talking about 16-18 yr old high school kids here. They think its cool when the head coach tweets them or hits them up on fb. If Iowa cant recuit better than this year we will continue to be a .500 B1G team.

    This post was edited by KFSuperStar 17 months ago

  • Nice post!

  • Ohio State's 2011 team was a dysfunctional mess. Most Buckeyes believe that had Tressel still been coach and without the suspensions, which means Pryor would have been QB, we could have gone undefeated and played for the NC but even without Pryor, 9-10 wins wasn't unrealistic if Tressel was still the coach. Meyer's said that good coaching alone should be worth seven wins, which was an interesting statement for him to make considering he retained Fickell as DC. Because the talent was undeniably there to have won more games.

    But when Tressel left, we lost three coaches--head coach, OC and QBC. Bollman and Siciliano had the OC and QBC titkes under Tressel (and were retained by Fickel) but everyone knew who was calling the shots and holding Pryor's hand. Without Tressel, there was no leadership from the coaches or seniors, no creativity on offense, rumors of coaches nearly coming to blows in staff meetings, indecisive game management, players shooting people with BB guns and picking fights outside bars, a 25-year-old walk-on senior starting over a 5-star freshman at QB. All you have to do is watch the last 1.5 quarters of the Nebraska game; in my opinion, that was the worst loss in Ohio State HISTORY because it was a game we had in the bag and our coaching staff gave it away to the Huskers. We had the most losses in 114 years. Players were grossly out of shape and demoralized; Braxton Miller was a complete mess. Sanctions loomed over our heads. A lame duck staff coaching in a bowl game no one wanted to go to except Gene Smith.

    That's what Meyer took on. He cleaned up the roster, quickly got rid of the troublemakers and malcontents, and brought in a Top 5 recruiting class after inheriting one that was ranked in the 20s. And freshmen played. SSDE Adolphus Washington blew past Taylor Lewan to strip the ball from Devin Gardner. Noah Spence got plenty of PT at WSDE. Tommy Schutt played every game at DT. Taylor Decker backed up a senior at RT. Josh Perry and Cam Williams both started games at LB. Brionte Dunn played RB. Mike Thomas saw the field as a WR. A half-dozen freshmen played special teams and most of them were guys Meyer brought in, not Fickel and Tressel. But he still honored those commitments.

    We had a guy would played TE in 2011 start at RT in 2012. Braxton went from hot mess to hot commodity. Our senior fullback was moved mid-season to linebacker, a position he hadn't played since high school. Who does that? Our seniors, who could have transfer without penalty, not only all stayed but stepped up. I think Meyer deserves all the credit for 12-0. He literally willed that team to an undefeated season.

    And if you think last year's OOC was weak, this year's is just as easy--home games with Buffalo, I-AA Florida A&M, San Diego State (because Vanderbilt cancelled) and at Cal. We're embarrassed by it but 2014's is better--Navy at Baltimore and home games against Kent State, Cincinnati, and Virginia Tech. All four 2014 opponents played in bowl games this year. That's assuming, of course, that we don't have to cut at least one when the B1G goes to 9 or 10 conference games in 2014.

  • Morrison71

    Well since this turned into an OSU thread I have a couple questions. How many scholarships did OSU lose? Wasn't this the first year of the punishment? I really don't know just wondering. Because it seemed like it didn't really hit USC until a couple years later. I guess you could blame coaching on that. I just don't quite get why Meyer should be praised so much for coaching a loaded team ( by college football standards) with zero expectations, and zero pressure?

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  • Osu lost 9 scholarships over 3 seasons. USC lost 30 over 3 seasons.

  • Morrison71

    Wow who the hell did USC piss off that bad? I remember hearing something about USC not coming clean but that's pretty drastic IMO. The NCAA really doesn't make sense to me anyways. They need to put a face on the NCAA so we can hold someone accountable for handing out these punishments.

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  • Regarding the 2011 OSU-Nebraska game, I've said before that that second half was the worst half of coaching I've seen in football at any level. The offensive play calling and the complete lack of discipline by the defense were both unjustifiable.

    I understand the dysfunction that was present when Meyer arrived, but the roster still had the same level of talent that had been winning B1G titles every year from 2005-10. So while Meyer had to clean a lot of things up, he also inherited arguably the best roster in the conference, and then had the luxury of playing a soft nonconference schedule (I'm not blaming him for that) in which his team could still win games while developing on the fly, and the B1G just so happened to hit rock bottom at that exact time. I'm not saying he doesn't deserve any credit for the 12-0 season, as the head coach certainly does, but I do think the praise he has gotten is way over the top. Tressel easily goes 12-0 with that same exact roster and schedule, doesn't give up 49 points to anyone, let alone Indiana, and probably beats Michigan by 17.

  • As long as we agree on what a mess the 2011 OSU-Nebraska game was, you're entitled to be wrong about everything else. biggrin


  • This hasn't become an OSU thread. It's become more of a discussion of what Ohio State's doing differently. And not just from any other B1G school, but even the differences between Meyer and Tressel.

    And I think what Ohio State has under Meyer that it didn't have under Tressel and that Iowa and other schools are missing is a full-time recruiting coordinator, not a position coach doing it part-time or a grad assistant. Under Tressel, John Peterson was the TE coach and recruiting coordinator. Under Meyer, Mark Pantoni is Ohio State's director of player personnel. That's a title taken from professional sports. He had the same job working for Meyer at Florida. He's about 30 years old and is 5-9/160. He's not a coach but he's on the football staff. He didn't play college football. He does nothing but focus on recruiting and roster management. Pantoni's wired into social media, the recruiting sites, following the chatter, watching film, talking to high school coaches, whatever. If it falls under recruiting, it's in his job description. He's the football team's HR manager but he should be the school's #1 cheerleader as he shamelessly promotes OSU football and the staff. He often the first guy to contact a recruit. This is excerpted from an interview with 2013 OT Logan Tuley-Tillman, who eventually signed with Michigan: "The Ohio State offer came a day after I got offered by Michigan. Mark Pantoni got in contact with me and started selling Ohio State to me. He reviewed my film and gave it to Urban Meyer. Then (Meyer) told me how much I impressed him and he offered me a scholarship." (Tuley-Tillman was the Michigan recruit who later infamously set a pile of OSU mail on fire and posted it on Twitter.)

    Pantoni retweeted this on NSD:

    FootballScoop Staff ‏@footballscoop
    The value of a great recruiting coordinator / director of player personnel is only going up. If you have one, take care of him

    If I'm Kirk Ferentz, I'd create a $100k job for a full-time director of player personnel. He'd be a techno-geek, football junkie. Think Jonah Hill's character in Money Ball but with a lot more energy and charisma.

    Lastly, USC's punishment was a 3-year bowl ban and a loss of 10 scholarships per year for 3 years. They accepted the bowl ban but appealed the scholarship reductions. Their appeal was denied last March, which was after they'd completed the 3-year bowl ban, so, in effect, they split their penalties in half. This is the first year of the reductions. That's why their recruiting class this year was so small.

  • several years ago while the ncaa was still dithering about how to handle usc, there was a pretty strong body of opinion that their prideful and flagrant violations deserved a stronger penalty than the one that emerged. i think they got off pretty easy--just because they're usc. who says using trojans doesn't offer protection?

  • HawkiBrad55

    I though Eric Johnson was our full time recruiting coordinator. Any clarification on this Todd?

    And as far as anything else I know we have been down the last few years, but besides OSU we have represented the B1G in bowls games better than any program in the last decade, how many times were we the only B1G team to win?

    Since 2001 we have beat Texas Tech, Florida, LSU, South Carolina, Georgia Tech and Mizzu
    OSU since 2001 beat Miami, K State, Okie St. Notre Dame, Oregon and Arkansas
    Mich. Auburn Florida twice, and V tech
    Mich St Fresno St.(lulz) Georgia and TCU
    Wisky, Colorado, Auburn, Arkansas, Miami
    Nebby hasnt been in B1G long enough for me to compare as a few, of their few bowl wins were against B1G opponents

  • Per the school's athletic web site, Eric Johnson is Iowa's Recruiting Coordinator and Defensive Line Assistant Coach. Prior to this past season, he was the RC and TE coach for two years. He's been Iowa's RC for 10 years but he was also an assistant position coach each of those 10 years.

    Recruiting's become a 24/7/365 job. It's too important to ask a guy to do double duty.

  • HawkiBrad55

    Ya that is for sure, I just thought I read he was going to do recruiting full time, no verification,that is why i asked Todd. I read way to much stuff to try and keep everything straight biggrin

  • Until the 2012 season, Johnson was heading up his own position group. He still has some positional duties as assistant defensive line coach, but the fact that he's no longer in charge of his own position group enables him to spend that much more time on recruiting. So while recruiting isn't the only thing he does, it probably accounts for the vast majority of what he does.

  • Wow, i've went to running my mouth straight to being a loser with feeble excuses. Definately OSU fan material, can't even post without talking down your nose, belittling and name calling, but hey, i bet you're great at parties.

    As far as Iowa getting a 30th ranked class, sure, we should be able to do that. That'd get us what 15th in the SEC? Not quite what ol' Urb was talking about.

    Done responding to you, but feel free to throw some more insults, it's what you elitists do and all.

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    If you don't like my opinion, at least you can enjoy the view

  • This is a very important and pertinent discussion. The success of the Iowa program moving forward will, in large part, be contingent upon recruiting. The landscape is constantly changing and evolving, and Iowa will absolutely have to keep its finger on the pulse. I couldn't agree more that we need a young techno-savvy energetic full-time person overseeing recruiting, and have felt that way for years. Johnson by all accounts does a nice job, but I'm not sure if the program has optimally formulated his responsibilities towards that end.

    Iowabuckeyes, I think most of us on this board recognize, that even though you are an OSU fan, you are not an obnoxious troll stirring up trouble, so I would ignore the posters that are determined to marginalize you. Your posts are appreciated and informative.

    As for why Iowa struggles with recruiting, I personally think it's multifactorial:

    1. Ferentz's contract. No coach should ever be given a contract that eliminates the incentive to put a great product on the field. He deserved a good contract based upon his prior success, but not essentially a guaranteed one. He's a high-character guy, so I'm not sure it's a huge factor, but it's hard to resist the temptation to rest on one's laurels.

    2. Location. Yes, it can sometimes be viewed as a crutch, and several other programs routinely overcome this, but nevertheless it's a factor. That's especially the case when combined with #3. Like it or not, the perception (happily perpetuated by opposing coaches, BTW) is that Iowa is the "middle of nowhere, nothing but cornfields and cow pies" place. It may sound like a minor thing, but I did read a quote from a recruit several years ago stating that the lack of an airport supported that perception. e.g., "They are so out in the boonies, they don't even have an airport"?

    3. Lack of tradition. Not that the tradition is poor, but that is why places such as Nebraska, N.D., Michigan and Oklahoma can overcome relatively mundane surroundings.

    4. Lack of promotion. This is a bit of a double-edged sword, as you don't want to come off as the equivalent of a used-car salesman, but our staff doesn't appear to really generate any significant enthusiasm. It's mostly this "aw shucks" and "we're not sexy" approach which can be endearing, but I'm not sure it resonates with today's teenagers. Hoke has done a great job in this aspect since taking over at Michigan.

    5. Lastly, lack of commitment. Many staffs put in more hours and beat more pavement, particularly with the HC and coordinators. It takes a lot of energy and time, but to compete with the likes of OSU and Michigan, we are going to have to outwork them. KF missed on a golden opportunity here when he suddenly had both coordinator positions open and could have targeted young energetic charismatic coaches, and instead hired Greg Davis, and we all have seen the early results there. On the flip side, this is exactly why the Iowa basketball program in on the way back. Fran is a tireless worker, and it's paying off.

  • I agree with the information iowabuckeys is posting.

    One of the first things Greg Davis mentioned in a press conference last spring when he first arrived on campus was basically saying in a round-about way that the receivers were not good. We had Davis and Martin-Manley as our primary receivers and both would be bench warmers on a team like Alabama, LSU, Oregon...etc.

    We as Iowa fans can make all the excuses we want, but in the big scheme of things, it's all about the type of talent the coaches recruit.

    We as Iowa fans have made excuses for a very long time about not being able to get the types of recruits other top schools are able to recruit because it's Iowa and Iowa City. Have you been to Tuscaloosa? Have you been to Baton Rouge? Have you been to Norman? They aren't exactly beautiful places you want to take your family to on vacation.

    Some schools rely on tradition. Well, maybe Ferentz needs to change the recruiting philosophy and create a new tradition in Iowa City.

    I remember some time ago, Ferentz referred to Iowa's program as "not the nicest car in the parking lot" or something to that nature, which basically means he's already thrown in the towel for going after top talent and doing whatever it takes.

    All I know is that I'm sick of losing and being disappointed with the football program. I want the feeling I had back in 2009 or the early to mid 2000s. ...and for the money that man makes, there are no excuses for why he shouldn't be challenging the top schools for the same recruits.

    This post was edited by u2Hawk 17 months ago

  • Great post!

    I am not concerned about Iowa fans marginalizing me. I expect that and I don't know that it's unfair if they do.

    Frankly, I am more concerned about Iowa fans marginalizing Iowa football.

  • Whatever, brother. Keep making excuses instead of lobbying for solutions.

    I hope you're enjoying your stay in your doomsday bunker but I think the CO2 from the candles has gone to your head.

  • There is an old Cary Grant movie called "The Awful Truth". Guys, Iowabuckeyes and Urban Meyer are delivering the awful truth. Quit being defensive and listen to them.

    Personally, I find Urban Meyer thin-skinned, arrogant and disingenuous. But that doesn't mean he isn't right.

    The NCAA has just opened up the flood gates for recruting. Word is, Nick Saban is going to have a 28-person department that will handle nothing but recruiting. Think about that.

    This reminds me somewhat of the 1960's, when two-platoon football and scholarship restrictions went away and we were treated to a decade of football dominated by UM, OSU, PSU, Alabama, USC, Oklahoma and Nebraska. Then the NCAA came to its senses and introduced scholarship limitations, and teams like Iowa and Wisconsin had a chance - not to dominate, but to win occasional championships and to build a competent program.

    These changes by the NCAA are wrong-headed and will be bad for most colleges, especially those that cannot keep up. Sure, Iowa and Wisconsin will probably be able to hang in there with big recruting budgets, but what about Northwestern? Indiana? Purdue? Maryland? Rutgers? Those schools already rely on state and student fee subsidies to make it. How is this good for the sport?

    And how will it be good for the minor sports, which rely on football largesse that may no longer be there? Will the Big Ten, the premier wrestling conference in the land, end up with only six schools fielding a wrestling program? The same applies to baseball, gymnastics, tennis, golf, etc.

    I just hope the NCAA comes to its senses on this, or that the Presidents grow a collective sack and stop the insanity.

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