Rolling without pretense into a half-assed recap of the general trends and panic-stricken storylines from the most dramatic non-drama of the college football year, signing day:
--USC, a private school in a beautiful climate with a well-groomed undergraduate female population, a school going for their seventh national championship in a row, a school that just lost their whole starting backfield to the NFL's first round...somehow "suprisingly" gets what many consider the top class of the year. Shocking, we say, shocking.
--Al Groh yawns, stretches, and goes to the garage to cut the sleeves off a thousand sweatshirts, ignoring grumbles over what even the Sabre calls a "deep if not highly ranked" class.
--The Fridge signs a qb, the first Maryland's signed since Friedgen's been there. "We knew we were forgetting something," says gravy-lovin' coach.
--Mack Brown gets a top 5 haul, their first since the VY class of 2002. Dennis Franchione says he met their needs, which contains as much truth as any statement Franchione makes, like "I am the King of Thailand," and "I write this website myself." Mike Leach, safely sedated in a cryogenic chamber beneath the stadium in Lubbock,
is replaced by a highly effective cyborg who addresses Tech's defensive needs by signing 20 defensive players out of an available 34 scholarships. When asked to comment this morning, the human Leach responded: "Yarrrrr."
Mike Leach's cyborg pirate double, seen here looking for defensive booty.
--FSU pulls their customary late flourish and nabs two recruits from Florida at the last second, finishing just behind the Gators in most rankings with a top 5 class. We're mystified, but we would be, wouldn't we?
--Lollipops will get you plenty, as the Sweatervest gets his standard blue-chipper buffet on signing day, stocking up on the cornerstones of Ohio State football: running backs and linebackers. We're praying for an OSU fan to celebrate by pooping in a styrofoam cooler in public, but dreading the inevitable pictures.
--Alabama's awash with DBs, but they're all overshadowed by beastly Andre Smith, who'll bring back the sun as soon as someone gets him a suitably large plate of ribs.
Give him what he wants, and no one gets hurt.
--Georgia's set to replace Greg Blue with UGA's requisite receiver-killing safety recruit, and Mark Richt never broke a sweat. The man is so relaxed we can't imagine him even lifting a phone to call recruits, instead relying on word of mouth leaked during one of his breakfasts in Athens to spread like wildfire through the Dawg Nation. No formal offers, just someone talking to you at the QT one day: "Coach wants to see ya. Give 'em a call." Paul's on it flies on shit.
--Charlie Weis and JoePa seemed to have done well with the soft sell, too, apparently just walking into recruits' homes, sitting down and saying "Hi, I'm me and I'm from (insert legendary school.) Wanna play some football and get a free education?" In a season where 3000 articles hyped the frenetically texting Meyer and other coaches embracing the internet and wireless technology, Weis and JoePa stayed effectively neanderthal with their bad selves. It paid off in two excellent hauls and two venerable programs putting new shine on old brasswork.
--Da U got bupkis, staggering through the handshake season without a coherent coaching staff or realizing that rolling up to pick up recruits in a white Escalade is soooo '02 these days. They're not sniffing the top 10, and according to Mandel's commendable attempt to encompass the whole smorgasbord of Signing Day in a single effort, may not crack the top 15. Well hung? Capable of laying down Master P quality raps over a five dollar beat? Interested in spending the next four years in Coral Gables up to your eyeballs in wealthy, bronzed, 1050 SAT-havin' ass?
Don't think splitting a sexual partner with a friend is slightly homosexual, no matter how homophobic you may be? Then the 7th floor Crue needs you, son!
Uncle Luke: the new OC at the U? You know the offense would be called the "Move Somethin'" attack.
--Les Miles can recruit, even with dorky headset and massive white baseball cap on. Beating Da U 40-3 in your bowl game will do that.
--Georgia Tech signs a solid, if unspectacular class of 15 due to sanctions. All look forward to going 8-5.
--Oregon binged on Juco transfers, signing eight, the most of Bellotti's coaching tenure. This could be a possible attempt to make up for their weak showing early in the recruiting season; Oregon State paid attention and, despite getting asswhipped 56-14 by the Ducks, sold "PLAYING TIME AVAILABLE NOW!" and clearly beat the Ducks in-state despite having Mike Riley as their coach.
--Finally, there's Urb. We Are The Boys has the comprehensive coverage on the Gators' stellar recruiting class, which most analysts have at at the one or two spot nationally. Losing two recruits on signing day to FSU stings, but it's not unprecedented, especially given the Seminoles' history of raining cash on recruits through third party wire transfers kidnapping relatives for the ransom of a signature making a late rush on signing day. They did a superb job and have begun to work areas of the state heretofore off-limits to Florida, and did so with a momentum and aggression (NOTE: not "aggressiveness," which is a made up Salisbury/Schlereth/May word) unseen in a Florida staff. Fine work. Now figure out how to score points and keep Deshawn Wynn off the reefer and ho-hos, and we'll be talking some serious man-crush here.
This man is smiling. He should be.