As some of you may know, GridironStuds.com is not the only thing I do. I also run All Eyes DB Camp and train defensive backs. I am often approached by parents of youngsters in the age range of 8-12 years old asking if I would train their child to be a defensive back. My immediate response is no. Of course I don’t ever just leave it at that. With that no comes the explanation that I only train individuals age 13 plus and I recommend that their child play a different sport in the offseason.
Maybe you know it or maybe you don’t but when your senior season of high school football ends, you are now in the 4th quarter of the recruiting process. This is also known as crunch time. If you know anything about crunch time, it’s when things start getting real and I mean fast.
What does real mean in the world of college football recruiting? It means that if you don’t possess a certain amount of self awareness then there’s a chance you can end up signing with a school you don’t really want to go to or worse yet, end up sitting in the crowd during the signing day ceremony wishing you were on the stage with a pen in hand.
If you’re a college football fan like me, then there’s nothing you like more than taking in the action each and every Saturday. It’s a ritual whereby you park yourself in front of the TV at noon and move only for bathroom breaks and hot wings until midnight. An increasing part of the Saturday ritual for many though is commenting on Twitter and it may be ruining the game.
Coaching pressure is nothing new but the level and scale has increased dramatically with the advent of message boards and social media, most specifically Twitter. As the results poured in last Saturday, the messages from fans were loud. “Get rid of Butch Jones” and “How much is Ed Orgeron’s buyout?” Orgeron is in his first season as head coach of LSU and Butch Jones has produced winning seasons in three of his last four years and is yet to lose a bowl game at Tennessee. Last week it was those two guys, in weeks before, it has been Kevin Sumlin at Texas A&M, Mike Riley at Nebraska and Jim Mora at UCLA. What has happened to us? I realize that social media is a medium for the loudest and a lot of times the most ignorant amongst us but one can not deny it’s increasing power in decision making these days. My message here to the college football programs is turn down the volume, perhaps even mute it.
By: Chad Wilson - Editor - GridironStuds Blog
In this day and age more than ever, the public as well as the media loves athletes with big personalities. Big personalities get big coverage and with that we all often get lied to.
Display a big personality in these days and you are ratings gold for media outlets. The public at large has an insatiable appetite for entertainment. At every turn we must be cured of our boredom. This is the reason why smart phones have taken off over the last decade. We must be entertained at all times.
So where do the lies come in? The media will always gravitate to the big personalities. Big personalities make their jobs easier. Big personalities provide stories that get clicks, views and shares. More viewers, more advertisers. More advertisers, more money.
Once the media finds a personality, they will cover up their short comings on the field of play. They will also give them awards and accolades because it adds to the narrative. In essence, the media will create a star for their own use. I have watched this at almost every level of sport especially in football.
Unfortunately what comes next is the downfall. At some point, the hype won't meet the height. The public consumes all the good stories and the only thing left is to drag the personality back down the ladder the media accelerated him up.
In the process, strong performers get overlooked, get less coverage and get underserved. What we are creating in sports media is a diva syndrome. If you aren't outlandish, you don't get covered. Perhaps this has always existed but with the advent of social media, this whole scenario is on steroids.
I first observed this in college football recruiting g coverage and now I am noticing it in the NFL draft coverage. Athletes on the high school level will be given awards, MVPs and superlatives for things that have little to do with their on field play. Since the public at large does little to research nor do they know enough to decipher what they are seeing, they take these media opinions and run with them.
Unfortunately it doesn't just stop in high school. This phenomenon grows in college and balloons in the NFL draft. I have been spending quite a bit of time watching draft hopefuls on tape and as someone who has both played and coached the game, I have one thought. What in the hell are people looking at? I am left to think one thing, these networks providing draft coverage and mock drafts must have only one objective and that is to entertain. Clearly they are not here to inform.
So time and time again, the media will create the stories for us and go out of their way to help us think what they want us to think. With our society becoming less and less willing to work to get knowledge, we become victims of the media puppets
The 2017 NFL combine just passed a week ago and for the last seven days, NFL football fans and the media personnel that play up to them have discussed the 40 yard dash times of the prospects ad nauseam. Yes, we all know the obsession over 40 yard dash times can reach epic proportions but can something talked about so much be very misunderstood? The answer is yes.
Training and 3 Point Stances
I’ve had the pleasure of watching the greatest wide receiver of all time, Jerry Rice and the greatest cornerback of all time, Deion Sanders play their entire careers. I mention these two positions because these are the times that most fans and media obsess over. The time during which wide receivers lined up in three point stances has long passed. The practice of lining up in a 3 point stance as a wide receiver had made it’s way out of the NFL game by the time Jerry Rice stepped on the scene in 1984. As part of his audition for the NFL in ’84, Jerry Rice, like all other prospects, was asked to run a 40 yard dash and come out of a three point stance. As we all know by now, Rice’s time (4.7) was not ideal and people questioned his ability to be an elite NFL wide receiver. In a short sprint like the 40 yard dash, technique is of the utmost importance. Negotiating your way out of a three point stance and into proper running form while making maximum use of your push forces is just about everything. Choose the wrong stance or make some false steps and your time will look like a retired busy street prostitute without her make up on.
As the flag landed on the turf of Sun Devil Stadium on January 3, 2003 symbolizing the end of the scariest mini era in college football history, an entire nation of college football fans and programs rejoiced. A Hurricane win vs. Ohio St. and the reign of terror may have grown stronger like an uncontrolled forest fire. In the wake of this unfathomable loss, college football programs began their forensic like study of the Miami Hurricanes program. In so doing, plans were made to cut into the huge slice of pie that not only was Miami eating from heartily but the other two major college football programs in the state were enjoying as well.