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Players Recruiting Other Players? recently ran a story about senior Houston Cypress Ridge quarterback Russell Shepard who is currently committed to LSU.  Shepard has spent the last few days in Florida, preparing for the Under Armour All America Game which will take place on Sunday with some of the best prospects in the country. 

The interesting aspect of this story lies in the fact that while participating in the All America Game events, Shepard has been working double duty.  Aside from showcasing his skills as at quarterback, Shepard has been trying to persuade some of the other uncommitted All Americans that LSU is the right school for them.  Shepard is not violating any NCAA rules since he is not a member of LSU’s coaching staff. 

While this type of recruiting certainly happens more often than is reported, it’s interesting to read about the different approaches that Shepard has taken with different recruits.  “Shepard said that in his nine-month stint as a recruiter, he has learned that different players require different pitches. Shepard said Debose, a burner who has drawn comparisons to Florida’s Percy Harvin, would be turned off by the hard sell. For his part, Debose seems to have responded well to Shepard’s softer pitch.”

In an ever changing recruiting environment, it’s certainly not surprising to read about a story like this.  It makes you wonder that with college coaches always looking for an advantage, will they begin to train their committed recruits on how to recruit other players?  Will the NCAA find a way to regulate this type of recruiting? 

Time will tell, but the one thing I am sure of is that until rules are put in place to somehow regulate player interaction like this, we will be reading more stories about committed high school athletes, like Russell Shepard, serving as recruiting coordinators for colleges. 

About the author
Adam Diorio


  • It would be a win-win situation if schools had try-outs. Current student-athletes are not able to “apply for team” as they do for a college. And we are not giving them an opportunity unless they have a support system ($$$). to market their abilities. My son has recieved 4 leters of acceptance to DI schools (baylor,TCU, A&M,UH) due to his academics. Yet only DIII school coaches have called. If he had an opportunity to try-out, He would have a definite answer if he could make the cut.

  • My son plays for a small school. It doesnt matter that the team made it along ways in the playoffs. He is only getting lower level acknowledgement too. They tell us for small school reason….wish we could find a way to give these kids a chance….every camp we took him this summer against those higher levels he competed equal or better….that has been a little bit of help to fall back on. At these camps he was looked at by higher levels and contacted throughout till about mid season…..then they were gone. Now D3 are hounding us but can’t offer a thing to help tuition cost. They also have used the tactic of player contacting my son. Wish there was some way out there to expose these small school talents, even if it where a summer scrimmeage with the big dogs(is that legal???) Someone has to come up with something .

  • Maybe the answer would be for D3 to legally be able to cut tuition cost ….since it seems they are the highest tuition we are seeing..I dont know the answer….but hopes this helps someone get an idea.

  • Tammy – Your frustration certainly is more common than you may realize. There are certain strategies to overcome the obstacle of being from a small school and also ways to navigate the financial aid process to garner more money from DIII schools if you know the right steps to take. If you want to learm more, I suggest you contact on of NCSA’s Scouts here: the NCSA website