I've commented before on college recruiting spinning out of control. Today brings more proof with Ryan Boatwright's verbal commitment to USC's basketball team. No big deal; kids commit every day.
Not 14 year olds.
Not 8th graders who haven't even decided where to go to high school.
That's right... USC basketball coach Tim Floyd offered a college scholarship to an 8th grader... and the 8th grader accepted. What's worse? This is the SECOND verbal commitment Floyd has received from an 8th grader.
I'm not sure how we get recruiting under control, but I have a few thoughts. One, no longer allow for verbal scholarship offers, but rather allow coaches to extend written scholarship offers at any time. Even 2 year olds, but with one caveat. Once a scholarship is offered, it can not be rescinded unless the prospect rejects it. Coaches will think long and hard before offering scholarships if they have to live with that decision for years.
A lot of opinions are shifting to the "Save Rosenblatt" side during the College World Series, and the emotional attachment is certainly understandable. But make no bones about it...at some point somebody is going to push the issue about moving the College World Series from Omaha. Mayor Fahey isn't trying to destroy Rosenblatt, but he recognizes the long term threat. That's why Omaha must make a significant commitment to the College World Series in order to extract a long term commitment from the NCAA. Remember it isn't the stadium so much as the event.
Meanwhile, after last summer's summer of discontent at UNO, Maverick athletics are finally starting to turn the corner. Tonight, the MIAA voted to admit UNO, giving the Mavs a home for their division 2 sports. Granted, there are still issues with division 2, but by aligning with the one of the bigger D-2 conferences, it's the best move for now. If D-2 continues to implode, the MIAA schools will start looking towards D-1 in the future, and by that time, UNO should be in a better position to pursue division 1.
As for UNO's division 1 hockey program, more good news courtesy of Mavpuck.com. New athletic director David Miller has a five point plan to engage fans, boosters, and the media. Not to mention replace the lounge lizards with a real pep band. Add to that the new pricing for UNO hockey tickets, you can feel the momentum finally swinging back.