With college football commitments running somewhere north of 600 players right now, we may be looking at a different cycle of recruiting this year — chasing the de-commits.
The bottom line for fans is don’t count too strongly on every commitment. They will change.
In a story at 247Sports.com, the numbers were over double in the first week of May over last year and have probably gone up by now:
As of May 6, there are 627 committed recruits in the current class of rising seniors (class of 2021). As of May 6 of last year, there were 302 committed recruits (class of 2020). As of May 6 two years ago, there were 243. As of May 6 three years ago, there were 299.
Offensive coordinator Kendal Briles admitted as much the other day on a radio show, but it’s also why fans shouldn’t get all worked up right now over verbal commitments from 17-year-old kids.
Things change. If you’re older, think back when you were that age and how often you changed your mind on just about everything.
We’re just shy of about six months before the early signing period and, trust me, there’s going to be a wave of changes … maybe creating chaos for those that follow it closely.
Blame the Covid-19 virus that has completely changed the face of recruiting in all sports. If they didn’t visit a school before the middle of March, they’re committing based on the combination of virtual tours and how good of a salesmen the coaching staff is.
It will be interesting to see the percentage of these commits that land at the school they pledged back in the spring.
Oh, normally there are spring commitments but this year appears to be especially high.
As a coach told me years ago, “when a player makes a commitment is when the real recruiting starts.”
In other words, even the coaches know a verbal commitment isn’t binding and there certainly isn’t a rule against opponents continuing to try and sway them.
The guess is for a lot of schools that are going to feel the economic pinch from the current pandemic. That’s not schools in the Southeastern Conference anytime soon.
As more coaches have discovered technology the guess is a new way of recruiting is coming about. Some schools will have to do it to save money.
Others will see it as a way to extend their reach.
How it works out, though, remains to be seen.