Signing day won't be snowed in
ESPNChicago.com Colleges blog
The latest news and notes on the local college scene. Blog
With a major snowstorm arriving in the Midwest on the cusp of Wednesday's national signing day, Monken could have envisioned himself getting on a four-wheeler, maneuvering through the snowy streets of Vernon Hills, picking up letters of intent and locating fax machines to send them while their future coaches impatiently waited back in their offices.
Instead, Monken will be able to enjoy his likely day off from school at home, knowing his two prized players will be able to fax their letters of intent without any trouble.
"They're going to get up in the morning, and if school is called off, they're going to fax them at home," Monken said. "Everyone will have their faxes to them at 8 a.m. It kind of stinks because it's fun to have them sign at the same time and take the picture, but that's not going to happen."
High school and college coaches and recruits do anticipate the snowstorm will impact signing day in some ways, but with backup plans already in place, they weren't too worried.
"We don't think it'll affect anything," Northwestern recruiting coordinator Adam Cushing said on Tuesday afternoon. "There's alternative arrangements. Some guys have fax machines. Some guys have scanners. It comes down to what they have accessible. We're talking to them and seeing what the plan is. Coach [Pat Fitzgerald] is always on top of this kind of thing, and he has us on top of them."
Northern Illinois coach Dave Doeren even has another fax machine at a different location prepared in case the power goes out in the football office.
"I don't recall a signing day where you had all this," Doeren said. "I think it's going to change it. They're going to have to fax from different places. It's not a big deal with improvements in technology. We'll be fine."
Even with faxes machines and scanners being available at nearby stores, the coaches stressed safety was still a concern. They emphasized the shorter the distance the better with possibility of two feet of snow in some areas.
"If they don't have something, maybe they know somebody in the neighborhood where they can just walk out the door and trudge a few feet," Cushing said.
Northwestern defensive back recruit Jarrell Williams wasn't disappointed by the news of having no school at Richards in Oak Lawn, Ill. on Wednesday. He planned on faxing his letter of intent from his home in the morning and celebrating it later.
"I think it's cool we don't have school tomorrow," Williams said. "I'm still having my signing day party at Chili's in Ridgewood on 95th. It's going to get bad out there, but by the time we have the party, the roads will be fine."
Scott Powers covers high school and college sports for ESPNChicago.com and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.