ESPNU Campus Call: Student-athlete panel
ESPN.com has invited student-athletes from a number of the top schools and programs across the country to tell us what they think about the issues facing NCAA athletes.
- SHOULD COACHES BE ABLE TO TEXT MESSAGE RECRUITS?Each week, ESPN.com surveys the student-athletes on our panel to see how they feel about a topic that directly affects collegiate life.
Should coaches be able to text message recruits?
"I don't think coaches should be able to text message recruits at all. Text messaging is a very informal and unproductive way of communicating and I don't see how either side would benefit from communicating that way. I never received any text messages from coaches, and honestly, I'm glad that I didn't. Making phone calls and writing e-mails are much more effective forms of communication during the recruiting process." -- Mike Leveille, Syracuse lacrosse
Leveille"I did not receive text messages, and if I had, I do not think I would have minded. However, I feel it is important in the recruiting process to create an environment supportive of the student-athlete's personal decision making in regards to selecting a university. Too much pressure and stress may interfere with the student-athlete making the choice that is right for them. Phone calls and home visits are more personal and more effective in establishing whether the student is a right fit for the program as well as whether the university is a right fit for the student-athlete."
-- Meghan Murphy, Notre Dame women's lacrosse"I wouldn't give any coaching staff the ability to freely text message recruits for fear that it would be abused. I guess I just missed the whole text messaging during recruitment, then again it was five years ago, but I did receive numerous phone calls during the NCAA alotted times. Just keep the text messaging to the same standard. These high school recruits don't need to be totally bombarded with text messages every day from hopeful coaches, that would only add to the recruiting stress for the students. 'UR the bst recrt evr! gr8 game 2day! I hope U choose us!' Nah, let them go to prom without worrying about their inbox filling up."
-- Scott Smith, Cal football"I definitely don't think college coaches should be allowed to text message recruits. Frankly, I think that is kind of creepy. I feel that text messaging is reserved for private messages between friends and loved ones. When my friends and I were being recruited, this never happened and if it is happening now, I think it's a problem. When I was being recruited and all the coaches were calling me, I found it kind of annoying, and if they are now text messaging, then I think it is going to get worse for future recruits."
-- Chase Wileman, SMU men's soccer"During my recruiting process, I did not receive text messages, most likely because I did not have a phone. I did receive e-mails somewhat consistently, and I didn't mind it at all. I think they could place limitations on age and frequency of contact. For example, the player must be at least 16 years of age before they can receive e-mails from coaches, and the coaches may only send one every week or every other week. I found the e-mails useful because they can't call you at this point, so it was a way to see what they were thinking was and how interested they really were in me. Text messages seem a little more invasive than e-mails, so perhaps they would have to place more severe restrictions than the ones I suggested above to prevent the recruit from being harassed."
-- Cory Schneider, Boston College men's ice hockey"I think college coaches should be able to recruit using text messages, but like any other recruiting method, there needs to be some restricitons. I'm not sure what these restricitons should be, but they should be similar to those associated with phone calls or even be integrated into the phone call restrictions. I never received text messages during my recruitment process, but I don't think I would have minded if I had, text messages are much less invasive."
-- Tyler Henley, Rice baseball"I think they should be able to text message recruits, but have certain guidelines to follow just as if you were to call them. A lot can be said through a text message and it can be a little exhausting for the recruit. At least minimize the text messaging to three or four per week. I didn't receive text messages, but I think it would of stressed me out because text messaging takes a lot of time."
-- Jessie Vetter, Wisconsin hockey"I think text messaging can be really affective as a recruiting tool. It kind of eliminates that awkwardness of talking to a coach. But too much of anything is always bad. A limit should be placed on the conversations so that recruits don't feel obligated to have long conversations, especially if they are really not interested. I unfortunately didn't get a cell phone until I went off to college so I never received text messages as a recruit, but now that I'm in college I use it to communicate with my coaches all the time." -- Nicky Anosike, Tennessee women's basketball
PAST QUESTIONS How are you preparing for college? "I'm looking forward to life after college. Currently I'm applying for a job with an organization called Teach For America. They place new teachers in inner-city schools for a two-year commitment period. I've always had a passion for teaching, and I think this would be a great challenge and a lot of fun. Their goal of bringing up the general education levels of the schools is something I'm incredibly interested in, and I would love to help in any capacity. If that doesn't work out, I'll be looking at graduate schools and student teaching jobs with the hope of ultimately becoming a high school teacher."
-- Scott Smith, Cal football
Are there enough safety precautions? "Soccer is a dangerous sport. Generally, competitors respect each other and I feel that there are plenty of safety precautions in the game. Recently, they have cracked down on elbowing and tackles from behind, which I believe has cleaned up the game drastically. Soccer is a game of respect and I feel the players have a responsibility to play hard but clean."
-- Chase Wileman, SMU men's soccer
What is a typical week like for you? "The academic week at a military academy is trying for everyone, especially varsity athletes. I usually get up around 6:30 and attend morning formation and inspection at 7:00. I go to classes all morning, have a half hour for lunch, then attend football meetings until it is time for afternoon classes. Following classes, I attend special-teams meetings and then go to practice and lifting. I usually get done with evening meal around 1900 [7 p.m.] and return to my room to study shortly thereafter. I usually complete all of my homework and military obligations in time to get to bed between midnight and 1:00 a.m. I get up the next morning and do it all again until Friday rolls around and it's time to go to the team hotel and get ready for the game."
-- Tyler Tidwell, Navy Football
What was the recruitment process like? "Unlike many sports, the recruiting process starts very early for college hockey. I first began contacting schools during my sophomore year of high school; due to NCAA rules, coaches cannot call you, but you are allowed to call them. I found a small range of schools in which I was interested, so I was able to set up unofficial visits to tour the campuses and meet the coaches. I committed to Boston College (verbally) during the spring of my junior year, so I never really got to do an official visit anywhere. There wasn't anything about the process that I did not enjoy, however overall for the game of college hockey, I feel that kids are being recruited too young. Some kids are making commitments four years in advance of college and I just feel that a lot can change in that time, or that younger kids may not know what they want in a school. The only thing I would change would be to perhaps place an age limit, say 16 or so, before coaches are allowed to talk with you."
-- Cory Schneider, Boston College men's ice hockey
Should schools give out sports scholarships? "Athletic scholarships enable many student-athletes to attend universities they otherwise would not be able to because of financial considerations. These scholarships open doors and create opportunities for talented, hardworking athletes to obtain a great education while competing in the sport they love. I do think, however, that universities need to make sure an athlete can compete academically, as well as athletically, at an institution before offering them a scholarship. While only 1 percent of us go pro, our education is what will determine our future and our contribution to society."
-- Meghan Murphy, Notre Dame women's lacrosse
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