The NCAA has a lot of dumb rules and the ruling on Friday that they are banning satellite camps is another one of those dumb rules.
Over the past year or so, teams have hosted these camps off their campus and head down to more talent-rich areas, and during that time it is has become a huge deal.
Teams such as Penn State, Michigan, Rutgers or other schools have been going to Florida or other warmer climate areas to connect with prospective student-athletes that they may not have been able to meet in person.
Well, the SEC and the ACC was not happy about this and one can connect the dots with this new ban..
Here is the official release on the ban:
The Council approved a proposal applicable to the Football Bowl Subdivision that would require those schools to conduct camps and clinics at their school's facilities or at facilities regularly used for practice or competition. Additionally, FBS coaches and noncoaching staff members with responsibilities specific to football may be employed only at their school's camps or clinics. This rule change is effective immediately.
The benefit of these camps are obvious for teams from less talent rich areas such as most of the Mountain West where Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico do not produce the mass quality of high quality recruits as does Texas, Florida, California, Alabama and most of the South.
Schools in the South, Texas and the West do not really benefit from these camps which allowed coaches to sell their programs to new areas, and had no need to leave their area to host a camp to find new recruiting ground as they already have that in their own backyard.
This was put to a vote and it is clear by the results from the conference, and that included the Mountain West which voted to shutdown these camps.
Source told @ESPN conferences that voted against satellite camps: ACC, Big 12, SEC, Pac-12, MWC, Sun Belt. In favor: B1G, AAC, C-USA, MAC— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) April 8, 2016
The leagues who are in the best recruiting areas voted against this because they do not want other schools in their backyard poaching players. The Sun Belt makes sense in voting due to their location but the Mountain West is puzzling.
The Mountain West has both good and barren recruiting areas. There are three California schools which probably voted against and maybe even the Nevada schools too since they are close to California and it is easy for recruits to get to hosted camps and that is half the league. The rest of the league resides in areas where there are not that many great recruits.
Getting kids from California or Texas to pay their way to places like Logan, Utah or Laramie, Wyoming, is difficult and there is typically not the talent in those areas compared to other states, and then there is Hawaii who has a decent amount of recruits but it is costly for athletes to go to Hawaii, but also vice versa.
Not sure how the Colorado schools voted and Boise who the latter might have voted no since they don't really need the camps to get talent to Boise due to their success.
That's how I got Boise State and how you can expose yourself to college coaches without paying expenses. Stupid https://t.co/dFDzAVODH8— ❄Deandre Pierce❄ (@its_rayray4) April 8, 2016
It just seems hard to believe that the Mountain West voted to ban these, but looking at the geography it had to be a close and heated vote.
The bottom line is that these camps only help the student-athletes and this rule in place hurts them, hurts the non-Power Five schools and even more so those football players who can not afford just hop on a plane and go to multiple camps across the country after their sophomore and junior years.
Having these schools go to your area, or at least within driving distance, helped get more kids evaluated and meet with Division I coaches more often.
The coaches get the benefit of going to a recruiting hot bed and seeing dozens upon dozens of athletes and find prospective athletes they may not have found, and this probably saves the school some money by seeing so many football players and not have to pay for these official visits which are limited and costly.
Here is an unnamed assistant from a non-Power Five school who has been part of satellite camps discussed how these camps are great for the kids.
"If you take away the politics, this is huge for the kids," the assistant said. "You can't argue that. Can you imagine a poor kid from Miami, trying to get him and whoever, a mom or dad, up and back from Michigan on a visit? They have to fly or rent a car, and most of these kids don't have the means to do either one."
Count Washington State head coach Mike Leach as one who does not like the change, and being in Pullman, Washington, it makes sense to use these camps which the school hosts a few times a year in California.
"It appears that the selfish interests of a few schools and conferences prevailed over the best interests of future potential student-athletes," Leach said in a text message to the Seattle Times. "The mission of universities and athletic programs should be to provide future student-athletes with exposure to opportunities, not to limit them. It appears to me that some universities and conferences are willing to sacrifice the interests of potential student-athletes for no better reasons than to selfishly monopolize their recruiting bases.
"I will be fascinated to hear any legitimate reasoning behind this ruling. We need to rethink this if we are actually what we say we are."
This is not just an issue that normally comes to being an issue dividing the haves and have nots but it is an issue across both sides and is really a Southern, Western and warm weather schools against cold and less populated areas.
Disappointed to read satellite camp news-better solutions than a ban- will hurt PSA's & Group of 5 schools. pic.twitter.com/fhmEDnn2ve— Pat Fitzgerald (@coachfitz51) April 8, 2016
All of this bickering just ends up hurting the prospective football player that is average but not the super elite because the four-and five-star athlete will get the notice of the school but it really hurts the kids who are two-star rated or not rated at all just because they could not afford to go to a certain camp and get a rating from the recruiting services.
The coaches say they do not look at those services all that much, but it could make a difference if one kid has multiple updates and is rated and the other guy doesn't even have a photo next to his name.
Once again, the student-athlete gets the short end of the stick.