SI.com 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.