Every year on National Signing Day college football fans from every corner of the country are glued to their phones, computers and TV’s anxious to watch their school’s recruiting class take shape. It seems, every year National Signing Day becomes a bigger spectacle.
Over the years there have been voices that call for the end to the circus that is National Signing Day. Now among these voices is Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson. He joins several other notable coaches including former Nebraska head coach, Bo Pelini, and University of Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez.
Both Johnson and Rodriguez feel that allowing colleges to sign players earlier would eliminate the speculation and unnecessary drama that comes with National Signing Day. According to Sports Illustrated, Johnson “suggested schools be allowed to sign players as early as the end of their junior year of high school”.
This plan would effectively eliminate the confusion of verbal commits. Syracuse was both a victim and a beneficiary of this system this year. The Orange lost a couple of key recruits, including Dana Levine but was able to pick up Wisconsin “commit” Jake Pickard.
The elimination of Signing Day would spare everyone the headaches that come with this verbal commitment process. It would not just benefit the schools, it would benefit the athletes as well.
Most of the thousands of athletes who commit to a school on National Signing Day are not going to be featured on SportsCenter. There won’t be cameras in their face as they sign their Letters of Intent. In principle, National Signing Day is a day where all student athletes take the next step in their lives.
The media today has turned it into a day that puts the top recruits on a pedestal. With this attention come higher expectations for these top recruits and quite possibly a feeling of discouragement for the so-called “lesser recruits.”
Doing away with National Signing Day would cut down on the sensationalism that has gripped college football. Ending National Signing Day would, according to Johnson, be beneficial to all people involved with college football.
Posted: Logan Grossman