October 21, 2003

What do Gary Williams, Kelvin Sampson, Rick Majerus and Bill Self have that Mike Krzyzewski doesn't want? A potentially huge new recruiting advantage... From the Sports Frog

posted by vito90 to basketball at 05:40 AM - 8 comments

I like Majerus' comment: "If a kid comes to Utah because he saw me on the EA Sports game," Majerus says, "I think the kid's got to reevaluate his life." And maybe Coach K just couldn't be bothered. Between his shoe contract and fantasy camps, a grand is a drop in the bucket.

posted by usfbull at 06:36 AM on October 21, 2003

"It's nice and all to be a little more exposed, but (recruiting) relationships are built over a year or two, and me popping up on a video game really means very little," Brady says. "If it comes down to me being on a video game on whether Brandon Bass comes to LSU or not, this recruiting is goofy." Exactly. If the coaches really think this is going to get them a recruiting advantage, then I think they're deluding themselves. There are so many other factors involved that I really can't see an appearance in a video game being more important compared to success of program, location, scholarships, even academic standards (for some players). Interesting theory, but I don't see it panning out in practice.

posted by Ufez Jones at 09:08 AM on October 21, 2003

Hmmm - if this becomes the deciding factor in how a selection is made, I'll eat my own ass. Someone who really wants to play ball with the nice man from the video game can't possibly get the minimal SAT score to do so. See? There's such balance in nature.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 09:11 AM on October 21, 2003

Seems like a recruiting advantage to me, though not a particularly significant one. It's probably comparable to the one that North Carolina gets for having the top merchandise sales for the last five years running.

posted by rcade at 09:52 AM on October 21, 2003

Maybe K has better things to do than play himself in a video game. Then again, he did endorse a game for Sega ca. 1995. Here's the full list of coaches involved from Doyel, listed in the comments below the article: Ben Braun - California Tim Buckley - Ball State Tom Crean - Marquette Billy Donovan - Florida Ben Howland - UCLA Mike Jarvis - St. John's Rick Majerus - Utah Phil Martelli - St. Joseph's Fran McCaffrey - UNC Greensboro Kelvin Sampson - Oklahoma Bill Self - Kansas John Thompson III - Princeton Gary Williams - Maryland This helps the lesser known coaches most, but I gotta agree that the overall effect is minimal.

posted by mbd1 at 10:03 AM on October 21, 2003

Whether or not this directly affects recruitment is irrelevent, as what this does is get their names out there. I don't know who these coaches are, but if I were to play the game regularly, I might get to know (sort of how I got a lot of my initial hockey knowledge by collecting hockey cards). That name recognition, alone, has to be worth something.

posted by mkn at 11:04 AM on October 21, 2003

I have to disagree about this. If the coaches name are used frequently, the effect is the same as frequency in advertising, which is the theory that having your name mentioned constantly in subtle ways is just as or more effective than one big splashy campaign. It's the same reason advertisers repeat their names and phone numbers several times in every ad. Assume that you are a game-playing 12-year-old, and you spend a portion of every day playing this game. Now assume it's four years in the future, and you receive two letters one from, say, Tim Buckley at Ball State, and another from a coach at a similarly sized college. I would think the immediate name recognition that Buckley has earned through the exposure of the game can't do anything but help. What happens after that is up to the coach, but getting your foot in the door is a big part of the battle.

posted by wfrazerjr at 12:42 PM on October 21, 2003

I think the upside is exaggerated (and unknown, really) and what downside is there? Here's a $1000 to appear in the game. Sure, why not. Good move by those coaches. But Coach K probably gets enough exposure on TV every year through the combo of nationally televised Duke games, a Duke run in the tourney and then Coach K doing colour after they are eliminated (he does colour, right? I missed the last tourney so I am just going by memory). He doesn't need this videogame exposure.

posted by gspm at 01:04 PM on October 21, 2003

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