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I'm willing to bet there are a lot of college coaches keeping a close eye on how this Matthew Thomas situation plays out.
If Thomas is able to wiggle out of his Letter of Intent with Florida State, it could open a whole new can of worms that most coaches dread. Think about it. The Spring Evaluation Period is underway and most major college programs are checking on a few 2014 targets, but most of their attention is already turned to 2015. For the most part, the spring is used to recruit two years ahead.
Imagine if Matthew Thomas is released from his LOI and it sets a precedent that kids can leave after Signing Day. Schools only have nine assistant coaches that are allowed to actively recruit on the road. These assistants are already recruiting across two classes (2014 and 2015). If recruits are now exiting their previous LOIs, you'll have coaches recruiting across three classes. If this were to happen, college staffs will have to continue to recruit 2013 from Signing Day until their class enrolls in the summer. They'll have to be sure that nobody is getting to their signees, even though they've already put their name on a "binding" contract.
For example, what happens if people get in the ear of a signed linebacker and say, "Look, FSU has commitments from Kain Daub and Delvin Purifoy. Are you sure you still want to go there?"
This is more than just a Florida State issue. This is something that the NCAA needs to step in to and something on which the Atlantic Coast Conference should be keeping a close eye.
Recruiting has changed so much in terms of recruiting ahead. A situation like this will add a new element - recruiting backward.
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You are so right. Usually I am for the athlete and against the NCAA rules. But in this case, FSU has committed to putting millions of dollars of resources for less than 100 students athletic development.
With that kind of commitment they should not be having to re-recruit these guys after signing day. It would be a free for all. If Kiffen can do this now, then what happens when they are off probation and looking for an extra 20 players? Does he get to go shopping on all the other teams players? Can he just call up players on another team and say look, we need you come here and play after you sit out a year?
Exactly why there must be finality in this process, and that finality occurs the moment the young man sings the LOI. I know it's a big decision, and sometimes kids make the wrong ones on NSD, but allowing athletes to abandon their committments will only make things worse for the schools--and for them.
As aivlys said there has to be finality in the process. I'm usually a strong advocate for the rights of these kids. But ultimately, the recruiting process needs a strict expiration date that cannot be compromised or circumvented. Only under special circumstance should a kid's commitment to a binding contract be re-visited and eventually reconsidered. A kid like Thomas who seems to be caught in the cross-hairs of his parents respective wishes is often made into a pawn in these type of situations. That being so, if given a release I believe that FSU should be able to dictate the terms of such of release.
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As I mentioned before, it’s also in the athlete’s best interest that the recruiting period have a certain and final expiration date. Otherwise, schools can continue to “mess with his head” just because he has to deal with all of the adjustments that EVERYONE must make when they go away to college.
If the LOI ends up becoming as meaningless as oral commitments have, then these young men will never be able to close the hectic and unsettling recruiting chapter of their lives. In the aggregate, that is a worse situation for athletes than the one MT6 is sadly experiencing this moment.
If this has so many ramifications nationwide, then I don't see how Fisher lets him out of his LOI. I'm willing to bet this not what Jimbo wants to be remembered for..
My question is if true and he was not sure then why not just wait....signing day is just the first day to sign.
Other kids have waited, so why wouldn't Thomas in this case?
I agree FSU has no choice but to dig in here.
How is a system that sees coaches pack their bags and abandon signed contracts at will for greener pastures going to find the ethical fortitude needed to preach to kids about what a commitment really means?
Coaches are not setting a good example.
Maybe, just maybe, the precedent needs to be set from the top down.
Once a coach signs a contract, they must honor it or have a show-cause scenario to go elsewhere.
Point being, if coaches can do it, kids should be able to as well. They are NOT slaves, they are human beings with their own wants and desires.
This post was edited by BrickTamland 11 months ago
The poster formerly known as 31-7. Understood by few, known by many, loved by all.
Would it really set a precedent though? It's not like other schools will be forced to do it just because FSU did it. Or am I missing something?
"For example, what happens if people get in the ear of a signed linebacker and say, "Look, FSU has commitments from Kain Daub and Delvin Purifoy. Are you sure you still want to go there?" "
Probably this is almost exactly what was in fact said to Matthew Thomas.
On the other hand, if they're going to open up this can of worms, players will be able to reconsider their commitments when their girlfriends, whom they followed to Ole Miss, break up with them over the summer.
This post was edited by googolplex 11 months ago
Is it not a violation to recruit players who have already signed elsewhere?
Nobody is arguing Matthew Thomas should be forced to go to college at Florida State.
What people are arguing is that if Matthew Thomas is going to go to college ON A FOOTBALL SCHOLARSHIP, and he's going to do that NEXT YEAR, then it must be at Florida State. If he pays his own way, or can get an academic scholarship, he is as free as any other high school graduate to go to the college he chooses.
The difference between Matthew Thomas and most high school graduates is that he has MORE options than they do. He is freer than they are. He has all the options they have, plus the option to be on football scholarship at FSU next year, or on football scholarship anywhere else a year later still.
First, don't use the word "slaves."
Second, when a coach breaches his contract (like Kiffin did with UT) there is usually a penalty that is being paid, it’s just the competing school ends up paying the penalty, rather than the departing coach. That isn’t present here, where the school gets no compensation for the breach.
More importantly, coaches SHOULD be honoring their commitments, unless the school didn’t honor its commitment (like what RichRod claims happened at UWV.) But just because a guy like Kiffin or Saban or Meyer breaks his word every other day is not a reason to say the LOI is meaningless and should not be honored. That there is already dishonor in the coaching ranks is not a reason to allow dishonor at every other rank.
When Jimbo honored his commitment to the olineman from Plant High in Tampa who got injured, was that the right thing or the wrong thing? It was the right thing, obviously. Why should this be any different? MT6 had plenty of time to think about his options, and he made his choice. Just because Meyer will bolt from OSU in two years does not mean schools should release kids from their commitments just because they have some buyer’s remorse. If they did, that won’t stop the Meyer’s from leaving their schools, but it will sure mean more corruption and dishonesty in the already shading recruiting world.
He can leave without his release, he just must sit out.
Coaches can leave a school whenever they want, they just must forfeit their contract and pay the buyout.
I will use whatever word I want to use, thanks :)
It isn't racial in connotation.
I was discussing this with bnknole earlier, if we released him every school in America would hate Jimbo for it except USC.
I don't see this as a precedence issue. This is a case by case situation. Just because Thomas is let out of his LOI doesn't mean others will be required to, that's FSU's (or any other schools') discretion. Most recruits that sign with FSU signed with them because they want to be here (same with other schools). If they don't want to be here, then they most likely signed elsewhere, thus eliminating the need to be "released). You get the occasional kid that signs someone where because they are forced to do so, but those are few and far between and we don't want those kids on scholarship anyways.
I definitely agree that this is more than a Florida State issue.
It gives far too much control to the athletes and their whims. It breeds animosity among athletes and coaches. (3* player ends up at his second choice because a higher ranked player changes his mind)
Rules are rules, and coaches that engage in continued recruitment after NSD should be sanctioned.
Ultimately, it hurts everyone, schools, coaches, athletes, and sends the wrong message.
WHAT IS HE DOING UP THERE ON THAT HORSE?
This post was edited by FsuFanForever 11 months ago
Since I know there have been worries about how the public would respond to us not releasing him, thought I'd mention I was just driving home from work and the sports radio show on here in Atlanta discussed this story. The two hosts and all 5 or so callers who called in were pretty unanimous about "of course FSU shouldn't release him, that would make a mockery of the recruiting process and leave themselves short a LB they were counting on; time to grow up and honor your word." Very small sample size, of course, but thought it was worth passing along; hopefully representative of how the media and public will view this if it drags on.
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