The game of football has changed. A lot.
Those changes have been for the good in some cases – like the commercialization of the sport which helps mid-major colleges gain television exposure they never would have had access to in years past – and bad for the game in some cases, like the commercialization of the sport which has taken college student-athletes and turned them into celebrities to the nth degree.
As the game has changed on the field, and the attention paid to it off the field has increased, the attention paid to recruiting and recruiting websites (thankfully) has also increased exponentially, prompting thousands of fans and prospects alike to flock to Twitter, Facebook and whatever other medium that can be found. Day in and day out, overzealous fans pimp their favorite programs, hoping to somehow lure the nation's elite to whatever college campus serves as the home for their glory days. At the same time, recruits and their families work tirelessly to promote themselves and their talents so that they can land whatever offer they covet the most.
It's actually kind of beautiful. The passion, the intensity, the love of the game; but the rush ends at some point, the appeal of non-stop attention ends at some point and when it's all said and done, the recruit who was so fawned over during his recruitment becomes just another small potato at a football factory pushing out order after order of large fries. It's a constant push for attention and affection from schools that offer much with little guarantees, and the players eat it up, often without truly considering half of the schools that offer them a scholarship, yet each offer is met with screams from the mountaintop.
One prominent Midwest high school football coach can't really understand that concept. Why clamor for offers and yet not truly consider every school that's willing to pony up hundreds of thousands of scholarship dollars for your services?
"Why do they want offers if they never take visits?" he said. "I don't understand it. How do you truly know what you want? I just wish kids would make sure. If you've waited your whole life for one school, then jump on it, but it's folks who never explore their options that I worry about. I'm just trying to make sure our kids see more schools, it's good for everyone."