Posted By:Brett Haynes - Greenville, SC Tags:
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Yes, 13. The University of Southern California Trojans and Head Coach Lane Kiffin have offered a football scholarship to a 13-year old kid from Delaware - and he accepted it. This story is crazy in so many ways that I nearly thought it was fake. So I looked into it, and sure enough, a 13-year old kid is now verbally commited to one of college football's most succesful programs not only of recent season, but of all-time.
David Sills is his name, and after further investigation (and memory), I find that Sills isn't the first to go through this. Courtesy of another article I read, I remembered two other names. Chris Leak gave his verbal to Wake Forest as an eighth-grader before obviously heading to Florida. And earlier this season, Tennessee was after Eric Berry's younger brother, Evan (again Kiffin).
But for some reason, this story really catches my attention. Yes, the others are absurd, too, but this kid - yes, kid - is in the 7th freakin' grade (and at least Berry has a proven bloodline)! I don't want to make a list of things he doesn't know about himself yet - it grosses me out. He is already a six footer and is breaking down NFL game film, according to his personal trainer, Steve Clarkson, who operates out of California (I just laughed out loud, sorry!).
And at the center of both of these 13-year old recrutings is none other than Kiffin. This is where I get ticked off.
Lane, GROW UP, MAN!! These are 13-year old kids here!!
These kids have no idea what to think or what to do. Personally, I think that 17-year old and 18-year old kids don't have much clue what is going on, either, but they have a hell of a lot better idea than a 13-year old. A 13-year old kid is clueless. Period.
This is very bothersome, and I hope the NCAA steps in. When something like this happens, the kid is put in jeopardy in so many ways, as is the university which is pursuing the kid. Southern California has spent money (ching, ching, ching) flying around for Sills. Who knows if Sills will still be wanting to play football in five years, or if USC will still have Kiffin around leading them. Yet all of this money was spent chasing this kid.
The line has to be drawn somewhere, and personally, I would like to see it where colleges cannot for any reason contact a player until he is officially an 11th grader (after last day of school as a 10th grader). I think that there should be a cut-off made at this point never to be gone back on. As 11th graders, kids are playing competitively at the high school level and I feel are reasonable to scouting. They are still in the maturing process, yes, but they are nearing the end of their high school careers, and this gives colleges - and the young man - a full 21 months to handle the process. It is a big decision, but one that doesn't need five years to think through!
Please tell me what you guys think. I am not real happy that 13-year olds are being chased around. However, I try to see the good in this. Maybe the kid will get a heads up on the recruiting process. Maybe he will get tons of free coaching. Maybe he will end up being that good after all. Who knows...
I could be wrong, and this board is open to discuss this here: http://fans25.com/discuss-thread.cfm?dt=2544&postStatus=successful&CFID=6764514&CFTOKEN=38360591
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