The NFL draft puts you to sleep, but the recruiting season is something I would pay good money to see take place.
Good thing for everybody is that both are free and we don't have to worry about burning a hole in our pockets. However, if there is one of these events that could get away with charging a price for admission, it would be the recruiting process.
Sorry, seeing high school kids pick the colleges they are going to attend is much better than watching them grow up and walk across a stage like they are graduating all over again. Everything that comes with it is dramatic and you aren't quite sure what is going to unfold the next day. The NFL draft is predictable and isn't nearly as exciting as what recruiting provides.
Here is why the NFL draft is monotonous when it comes to recruiting season.
Is he really going to go to the school everybody is predicting? Will he stay close to home? When will he make his announcement? Wait, national signing day has passed and he still hasn't picked a school!
What is going on?
With the many questions that are asked throughout the recruiting season, it tends to create more suspense than the movie Jaws. Fan bases are on the edge of their seat and college football fans everywhere are wondering when and where this top recruit is going to make up his mind.
There is absolutely nothing suspenseful about the NFL draft, as it ends up being the same stuff every year. Now if teams had less time to pick, each player received one pass when selected and the NFL owners had to arm wrestle for positioning, we would be much better off and the ratings would improve.
The fun part doesn't end when you find out which school these kids are going to go to. You also don't know how they are going to make their announcement. I mean really, who in the world brings a cute and adorable bulldog into the equation?
Once the player is selected in the NFL draft, the player shakes hands with the commissioner and then goes on to answering the same 63 tireless questions he has been asked over the last several months. No props, no fancy haircuts and no bulldogs, just tacky suits and a slow walk across the stage when their names are called.
The props that are being used nowadays make you wonder what is going to happen next. It is actually amusing that kids actually put time and effort into things like this.
If you are obsessed with sports, you are probably competitive by nature. You want to win in everything and the recruiting process gives coaches the ability to stick it to their competition even during the offseason.
When Nick Saban puts together the best class in the SEC, it reminds everybody who is still king. When Urban Meyer steps foot on the Ohio State campus and begins to clean house, everybody in the Big Ten knows there is a new sheriff in town. Recruiting allows guys to show that they can win off the field, as well as on it.
There isn't as much competition in the NFL draft because everything isn't as wide open. Sure, there is strategy with trading draft picks, but the overall level of intensity isn't nearly the same, as coaches aren't fighting for the same players.
College football is a dogfight year-round.
One of the reasons I cringe when watching the draft is because a lot of the most talented players go to the lousiest teams.
It took Tony Gonzalez 16 years to win one playoff game because he spent 12 of those playing for the Kansas City Chiefs. I'm almost positive that Calvin Johnson would like to get out of Detroit and play for a team that can actually win. I'm also sure that Trent Richardson would have liked to land on a team that had at least one other offensive weapon.
With recruiting, the players have the option to play for whichever team and coach they would like. So you can pick where you think you will fit best. You also get to decide whether you want to be that guy that wins championships or become the savior of a program that is on the rise.
Options are always a good thing.
When was the last time Clemson was considered a national championship contender? Can you remember the last time when the Louisville football team was actually overshadowing college hoops? All it takes is one remarkable recruiting class and a program can change overnight into a success story.
It has taken the Miami Dolphins forever and a day to find a quarterback to replace Dan Marino. Poor Cleveland Browns fans have only experienced one playoff appearance since the 1994 season. The Buffalo Bills have had more than their string of bad luck as well. A great draft in the NFL does not carry over to a championship, as it is much harder at the next level.
The success of these smaller programs has a lot to do with above-average recruiting and it is exciting to see it unfold.
The NFL draft gets three days. It is talked about for majority of the year. It comes. And then it goes back into hiding until next season.
Although national signing day is over hyped, recruiting really is a 365 day event. Recruits are constantly committing to schools and it doesn't even have to be the year of the recruiting class. Embarrassing enough, there have been middle school kids who have announced where they were going to college. Recruits in 2014 were giving their verbal back in 2011.
NFL draft gurus enjoy talking about the draft, but there are only three days where they can really take everything in. Recruiting talks place every day, which of course adds for more excitement.
The NFL draft is entirely too long.
Before, it would take all day; it was broken up on two different channels and by the time it was done, you felt a couple years older. Now, the draft is broken up on three different days as only a few rounds are shown to make things seem shorter.
Still, that is unacceptable to find out who was picked where. I shouldn't have to clear my entire calendar to watch a draft. It would be nice if we could get things over and done with without having to argue with the girlfriend about who is going to watch what. Seriously, getting the television set for three straight days is harder than actually sitting through all this nonsense.
With recruiting, we find out who is going to go where and we still have enough time to waste in our day doing other things.
In the NFL, if you end up winning the Super Bowl, you get the last pick in the draft. If you were an average team that barely made the playoffs and was eliminated in the first round, you still end up with a pick that will rarely impact your team right away.
Why should a team be punished for being successful?
Alabama won the national championship last season, and according to 247sports, it is the team that has the No. 1 recruiting class in 2013. Every team should be given a fair shot to get the best players in the country and that is what the recruiting process allows.
Don't like it?
Tell your team to step it up. Coach and perform better on the field, and you will succeed.
Some folks hate seeing recruits wake-up and decide to switch their commitment. It is even more frustrating for the fans of the teams who are having the elite prospects play with their hearts.
However, for guys like me, it is exciting and spices things up. It also keeps everybody on their toes and creates endless story lines. Seeing a recruit commit to Alabama and then leave for Auburn is absolutely hysterical.
In the NFL, once you are drafted, that is the team you are stuck with. Players have little to no leverage. The closest thing the players can do is hold out for a better contract, but even that ends most of the time when the season gets closer to kicking off.
The decommitments keep things fresh in the recruiting world and make the process much better than the NFL draft.
With the NFL draft, you stay up all night to find out that Matt Miller and his hundreds of mock drafts were pretty accurate. The Indianapolis Colts really weren't going to pass up on Andrew Luck and the Washington Redskins did gamble the house to select Robert Griffin.
What a shocker!
The recruiting season has many surprises and you never know what is going to happen next. We have seen highly recruited players commit to a school such as Houston over Notre Dame or Alabama. There was even a time when a recruit decommitted after he had the logo of the school tattooed on his arm.
Absolutely nothing is predictable when it comes to the recruiting scene, as there are surprises that take place every day.
We can't say the same for the NFL draft.