Social media has taken on an integral role in recruiting, but it also has provided prep athletes with unprecedented levels of attention before they step on a college campus.
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The Recruiting Game
While playing a game of catch with four-star recruit David Long and his siblings during a January in-home visit, Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh tried to climb a tree in response to a challenge by Long’s little sister.
Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh shook up the world of college football recruiting this summer with his unprecedented 39-stop, 22-city satellite camp tour that included an appearance in Las Vegas.
The arms race that has become an ocean the size of the Pacific in terms of opulence and luxury and extreme indulgence when it comes to facilities used to entice the egos of 18-year-olds has no foreseeable ending.
The college scholarship has become the dream for many high school athletes. Rancho High softball player Gianna Carosone and her family may have the blueprint for reaching it.
The Big Ten and Pac-12 guarantee four-year scholarships, but NCAA rules already limit the conditions on how athletes can lose their grants-in-aid. At UNLV, every effort is made to see that athletes stay their entire four years.
Most college coaches recruit mostly through AAU, club and travel teams rather than high schools. Several factors have shut high school coaches out of the process.
Recruiting rankings have existed in various forms for decades, but exploded in popularity after Seattle-area entrepreneur James Heckman launched an internet startup called RivalsNet in 1997.
Most UNLV coaches would like to make Southern Nevada athletes a key part of their recruiting efforts, but it’s not always so easy. Many are wooed by top programs and eager to experience life elsewhere.
Nevada’s two Division I universities — UNLV and UNR — offer the NCAA maximum number of scholarships in each sport they field. And a full ride for four years of college is like hitting a jackpot.
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