SoybeanWind is having nightmares.

We know Dabo Swinney isn’t happy about this whole letting college kids have money thing, so it makes sense that he’s indulging his inner sense of gloom and doom over the COA stipend.

“Basically, this is the way they’re getting that done, but there’s some unintended consequences. There’s no question it’s not a level playing field, and it is going to be the No. 1 topic at all the coaches meetings, because it’s not good. The intent is good, but for one school to be able to pay $3-4,000 more than another school, at the end of the day, guys are going to make decisions for the wrong reasons. It shouldn’t be that way.

“I don’t like where we are right now. We are where we are, but there has to be a better solution somewhere down the road. Eventually, we’re going to get there. It is what it is right now, and it’s going to be a factor in the recruiting process. There’s no question.”

Well, actually, Stewart Mandel has one, Dabo.

But I don’t share remotely the same concern that some do about recruiting impact. In fact, until the day comes that a recruit tells Scout.com he chose one school over another over a $3,000 scholarship gap, I’m not buying it at all. Recruits spend a year or more building relationships with coaching staffs, visiting schools, studying which have the best opportunities to play early and/or which offer the best path to the NFL. I just don’t see a kid weighing all of that, and then ultimately making his decision based on a scholarship check, even if, as you say, all other factors seem equal. I’m glad cost of attendance got passed, but my guess is a year from now, no one will still be talking about it.

If the thinking is that your average high school senior is a ruthless mercenary ready to hire himself out to the highest bidder, what’s really changing here?  Schools have sold upgraded facilities to kids for years.  Schools have paid recruiters more and more based on their success of selling whatever works.  (And let’s not even get into what boosters have done outside of the public eye.)

All that’s going on now is that kids are going to be handed a new set of checks.  If Dabo’s delicate sensitivities are offended by that, perhaps he needs to come up with a new sales pitch.  And if he thinks it’s a nightmare now, best he not ponder a future in which Jeffrey Kessler kicks the NCAA’s ass.

71 Comments

Filed under It's Just Bidness, Recruiting

71 responses to “SoybeanWind is having nightmares.

  1. Clemson is worried about a future where everybody legitimately makes funds available.

    There goes their brown bag on the back porch advantage.

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  2. MGW

    Cost of attendance payments are a good thing, absolutely.

    But the argument that, all other things being equal, a high school kid who has never had a dime to his name isn’t going to make money a huge factor in his decision is ridiculous. Its a disingenuous argument in favor of cost of attendance. I’m in favor of cost of attendance, but come on. Nobody’s buying that crap.

    Its not a new set of checks. Its an actual check.

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    • So before now, every school was on a level playing field?

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      • JCDAWG83

        No, but now the NCAA is pretty well endorsing payoffs to players.

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        • W Cobb Dawg

          Not sure NCAA is ‘endorsing’ payments. More like fighting tooth and nail until it became a hopeless exercise in futility.

          And I’m also not sure I’d characterize it as ‘payoffs’. More than anyone else, people come to see the players. And they’ve been getting shafted in this multi-billion dollar industry long enough.

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  3. Cosmic Dawg

    Amazing the hoops we have to jump through simply because the NFL gets an anti-trust exemption. We put price controls on wages during WW2 and it’s created 70 years of health coverage insanity by forcing employers to compete for workers via something other than wages. Price controls in football led to the colleges becoming the minor leagues, making big money, and competing for talent with gyms and food plans.

    If we ended the price fixing in football, nobody would be debating how to duct tape what is essentially a case of market distortion – restricting a specific set of talented 18-year olds from selling their skills in the free market.

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    • MLB has an anti-trust exemption, but NFL doesn’t….that is why we have seen a WFL, USFL, etc.

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      • Cosmic Dawg

        I believe they do have an anti-trust exemption. That allows a form of legalized collusion between members to set prices for labor and floors for tickets, etc and share inside information that competitors for talent and customers in other industries are not allowed to share.

        Anybody could start a baseball league tomorrow – just because you have an exemption doesn’t mean nobody can compete with you. It’s just so disadvantageous for outsiders that few try.

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  4. RocketDawg

    I can’t say that I necessarily disagree with Yabbo Dabo Do on this one. I am for the kids getting some sort of compensation but there are going to be schools that play by the rules (UGA) and those that sleaze it up and don’t (Auburn). Sure it won’t be an issue until we have a 5* that is considering both schools and ultimately chooses Auburn because they pay more on COA (which for the life of me I can’t figure out how it “costs” more to live in that shit hole of a town in Alabama over Athens but whatever). The only way you are going to make it fair is to cap the amount at ~$3-4000 which still won’t cover COA at some of the schools in higher cost of living states. I think it is a pandora’s box of problems.

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      • RocketDawg

        Then let’s do away with the school component and sign these kids to contracts like the pro’s do and have them negotiate a salary for 3-4 years. That is where we are headed and my interest in college football is going the other direction. It’ll be nice to have Saturday’s free in the fall, I am sure I’ll get a lot more fishing done.

        All sarcasm aside, do you honestly see any situation where this isn’t going to blow up into a giant shit storm?

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        • Russ

          Gotta agree with RocketDawg. I can see a future where I have lots of fall Saturdays suddenly free.

          I guess I can start following high school football.

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  5. Burnin’ it down, burnin’ it down … Mr. Emmert, it’s Jeffrey Kessler on line 1.

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  6. gastr1

    Nonetheless, do we really believe that a school can just opt out of the scholarship and/or facilities and/or high-paid assistants arms races–or whatever other arms race comes up later on? Isn’t that what McGarity has tried to do–rely on “relationships” to be more important than spending to keep up with the joneses? Isn’t it what Florida is doing now?

    How is it that breaking out the checkbook to keep with “the market” is the right (and only?) thing to do on one hand to enable championship-level recruiting, but when it comes to paying players, we can believe that relationships will carry that flag?

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  7. JCDAWG83

    College football, as we have known it, is gone. College football is now, officially, the NFL farm system. That Mandel only talks about a player’s chances of playing time, easiest path to the NFL, etc and mentions nothing about the school or degree the player may be interested in shows that college football has become minor league professional football.

    Once a few 5 stars go to the schools with the highest COA instead of other schools, the bidding war will be on. Anyone who doesn’t think that will be the case is naive, stupid or both.

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    • Frank Dawg

      That ship sailed a long time ago. Education and degrees were put on the back burner many, many moons ago.

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      • JCDAWG83

        To a large degree, yes, it did. The difference now is; the pretense of players choosing a school based on getting a “scholarship” to earn a degree is all but gone. I imagine it will only be a matter of time now before actually registering for classes is no longer mandatory and there will be no grade requirements.

        Which school a player decides to play for will now be nothing more than a business decision.

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    • Do you think that it just recently happened that college football is the NFL farm system? I think it has pretty much been the case since about mid-20th century.

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  8. Frank Dawg

    Yeah, god forbid a young person makes a decision based on money the way their coaching overlords do.

    Dabo makes himself into a bigger jackass every time he opens his mouth.

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  9. With COA, ability to trade on name and likeness, and the ability to get jobs, they could solve the problem as long as everyone pays the taxes due and outside commitments don’t interfere with the academic and athletic responsibilities. Let Todd Gurley go sign as many items as he wants to. Let another player do a commercial (with no Georgia logo) for Akins Ford in exchange for the use of a truck. Let a kid get a job to make some money and get real world work experience while he pursues the NFL dream. Let college athletes sign with agents to represent their interests in these areas.

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    • JCDAWG83

      Why bother with all that? Why not let them sign NFL contracts when they reach 18 years old? Kids on the baseball, golf, tennis, soccer, etc teams can go pro the day they turn 18. What makes football and basketball so special that they get an exemption from the law of the land?

      It seems the thing that gets lost in these discussions is that these are COLLEGE teams, they are not a farm system for the NFL. Do away with any special exceptions for admission requirements and have the teams made up of actual college students. Do away with all the “special” things athletes get, let them live like regular students or athletes in sports that are not “revenue” sports.

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      • Very true but there’s this little thing called the collective bargaining agreements between the professional leagues and labor. If college football becomes the equivalent of college baseball where the leftovers go, many people won’t find it compelling.

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  10. DawgPhan

    He is probably right. I doubt that the difference is going to move too many players. I suspect that the recruiting departments are busy whipping up answers and charts to show what is and isnt covered and how much a player could expect at each school in the conference and that sort of thing.

    like those total benefits letters you get from your employer that lists everything out.

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  11. Dabo’s stupidity is off the chart.

    The NCAA made CFB a business by squeezing every penny out of the system it could. Which is fine by the way, just so they pay their labor ( players ) like a business. Hell, let colleges bid for players in an open market. Will the rich and powerful have an advantage? Of course, what else is new? Time to live in the real world.

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  12. As with most things in life, it has been made too complicated. They had to call it “Cost of Attendance” in order to preserve the fallacy that the NCAA is only about higher learning. Why all the lipstick on a pig? Let’s just call it a payment and make it a flat rate. Why must it be based on some inflated COA that is different for every single school??

    I actually agree somewhat with Dabo on this one. I don’t think the COA stipend will factor into every single recruits mind but I have no doubt it will for some. A lot of these kinds come from nothing. You mean to say that a school offering a couple grand more than another won’t be a major deciding factor for some of these young guys? Kids are getting free tattoos and crab legs because “they can”. Some will also go to schools with higher COA stipends because “they can”. Mandel is giving some of them too much credit in the thinking department.

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    • If a kid makes a decision based on a couple grand, so what? It’s a free country. What’s sad is that it’s only a couple grand. It should be 10’s or 100’s of grand based on the 100’s of millions these kids generate.

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      • I’m not sure giving an 18 year old 100 grand coming right out of high school is a good idea. You would see parties the likes of which would put Nevin Shapiro to shame.

        But I’m all for a payment system. I just don’t agree that is should be based of off some fictionary number like COA that is easily manipulated on a whim.

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        • DawgPhan

          If you dont mind you could run all your purchases by me before you make them? I would like to judge you and your purchases. You probably can’t be trusted with more than a few dollars at a time.

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          • What’s with the smartass comment? You don’t have the ability to hold an intelligent debate??

            Stingtalk is this way ——>>>>>>

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            • DawgPhan

              what debate? You want me to discuss how I think thousands of people I dont know would handle getting a bunch of money that they earned?

              hmm..I guess they would handle it however they wanted to handle it. I dont care how they spend their money. You probably shouldnt worry about how someone else spends their paycheck either.

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              • What are you even talking about?

                The crux of my point was that schools should offer a fixed stipend amount not a variable. I don’t care how they spend it either.

                The guy above me said that he thought 18 year olds should be given 10s or 100s of thousands of dollars right out of high school. If you truly believe that is a good idea then I have some swamp land to sell you in Arizona for a steal!

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                • I don’t think anybody should be given anything. I think the free market should determine compensation as much as possible. I’m a physician so I know all about having what you can charge for your labor controlled by 3rd parties.
                  An 18 yo may throw the money away or he may not. I don’t know who will and you don’t either. I know a 50 yo surgeon who has made many millions over the last 20 years. He has a fondness for fast cars and faster women and has very little of that money left. Are you saying he should not be paid for his labor because he makes foolish decisions regarding money?

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                • No he shouldn’t because he is among a group of people for whom irresponsibility is the exception. We only get to be nannies for those we’ve decide need it based upon our own prejudices ya see. You know treating everybody in a group as identical to every other person in said group notwithstanding evidence suggesting that prejudices are almost always entirely wrong or at least grossly exaggerated is only the smart thing to do. Giving an 18 year old money based on market forces? Pretty soon you’ll have a music industry and child actors. Is that a world we can safely inhabit?

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                • I think there is some prejudice here, either conscious or subconscious. Most of the young men who are the stars and would deserve the largest compensation are black and many come from a rough background. Many people have preconceived ideas about them. I have been around Ga fans who have basically said : those boys should be happy with what they get, it’s more than they deserve. I’m not sure how serious they are, but talk like that makes me sick to my stomach. I’m not even going to write the really repulsive things they said.

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        • 3rdandGrantham

          Sounds good to me. Small businesses surely would love to benefit from such parties, such as caterers, DJ’s, etc. Regardless, casting all 18 year olds as immature party types isn’t exactly fair. My neighbors son recently quit UVA his sophomore year to join a Silicon Valley tech startup, and suffice to say he’s doing quite well for himself. I’ll have to ask, but I don’t believe he’s throwing Nevin Shapiro parties or blowing it on, well, blow.

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  13. Dog in Fla

    In news totally unrelated to indentured servants getting a COA entitlement handout, SoybeanTailWind is going to get a faster jet

    http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20150422/PC16/150429758/athletic-arms-race-clemson-gets-permission-to-buy-jet-for-use-by-athletic-department

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    • Gurkha Dawg

      So Dabo and his coaches fly around on a private jet but begrudge a player getting a few thousand.
      I don’t know how to post a link, but let me post a quote from rap mogul P Diddy who earned $35 million last year.
      “Gas prices are to motherfucking high,” Diddy complained.”As you know, I do own my own jet and have been flying back and forth to LA…Now I’m flying back and forth,like twice in a month that’s like $200,000 or $250,000 round trip. FUCK that. I’m back on American Airlines.

      Too damn funny.P Diddy says flying a priate jet is just too expensive, but Dabo needs one. You’re full of shit Dabo.

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  14. Skeptic Dawg

    I am in the minority here, but I find paying student-athletes above and beyond what they already earn is nuts. These kids, and they are kids entering their freshman year, are currently compensated quite handsomely for their potential athletic ability. Want to get G’ed, head to the NFL or CFL until you are old enough. Want an education, top notch job training, further physical development, and free personal promotion, head to college. The fact that this topic has moved from mere conversation to implementation is sad.

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    • DawgPhan

      Sad is someone who think that someone else earning a fair wage is a problem.

      Free markets for me, not for thee.

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      • doofusdawg

        Sad is not knowing the difference between work and school.

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        • 3rdandGrantham

          No kidding. Now please repeat that to the NCAA, athletic departments, TV networks and their sponsors, the institutions themselves, coaches, and everyone else benefiting off big time college athletics.

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    • PTC DAWG

      I am right with you.

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    • charlottedawg

      I think you make an excellent point. College football players are compensated handsomely for their services. In fact, what you proposed should be extended to the workforce. You as an employee are receiving from your employer education to some extent, job and skills training and free personal promotion. Why in in the world should you receive monetary compensation ?especially since I’m willing to bet you generate much less in revenue for your employer than a guy like Todd Gurley who’s services could be argued generate millions ofcold hard cash for Georgia. I think it would be more than fair for your employer to demand you work 60+ hours a week and in return only give you a job skills diploma, a pass to snelling, medical care, and a suite at east campus village. And before you say “that’s different” just know it’s not.

      It’s one thing for a kid like me who generated zero dollars for UGA to get a free education it’s quite another for a star athlete who brings in millions of dollars of value. It’s the economic reason pro athletes are paid so well and college players should be too.

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      • /slow clap

        I just don’t understand why so many people continue to conflate their romanticism of amateurism with the current-day reality that is the commercial enterprise that is major collegiate athletics. You would never accept those circumstances in your professional life and I think you laid out the perfect analogy for that.

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        • 3rdandGrantham

          Not only that (and I failed to mention this below), but in such professional life analogies, we’re able to work 40+ years till our mid 60’s or beyond, in which the true prime earning years typically are the last 10-15 or so. Heck, my own dad didn’t start earning what would be considered a handsome salary until he was in his late 40’s, for example. In sports, they have an extremely short shelf life, such as something like 3.5 years for the average NFL RB that Gurley is about to join.

          Athletes need to make money quick before injury and wear/tear takes over. A fresh college grad in his early to mid 20’s doesn’t exactly face the same predicament.

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          • doofusdawg

            yep… work five years then retire if you’re smart…or at least own a house free and clear. Hopefully the kid learns enough in college to get a real job in his late twenties or early thirties.

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      • 3rdandGrantham

        I could be totally wrong, but for Skeptic and others, I’d venture to guess that their opposition of this is mainly due to age discrimination. In their eyes, they are just 18-22 year old kids with little responsibility (no family, mortgage payments, etc), thus they should have to suffer like the rest of us did and grind it out until they finally start to get ahead a bit in their mid-late 20’s. Or, to put it more succinctly, how dare some 19 year old kid be showed even more than he already is.

        I see this mentality all the time in the corporate world, where some 25 year old from a good school at a good agency is offered a six figure salary by another agency/company, which drives the 40 year old of that company nuts, as it took him 10-15 years to reach that level. Thus, bitterness and envy quickly ensures from there.

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        • Dog in Fla

          “Thus, bitterness and envy quickly ensures from there.”

          As a resuit, the aging 40 year olds shall be able to

          Find the Right Ensure® for You

          This will enable each to bolster himself or herself for the rigors of the exit interviews that ensue. Assuming that those interviews go well and no breaches of the peace occur, each will be given a lovely set of steak knives as an additional consolation prize for years of valuable service to the organization

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  15. PTC DAWG

    If folks don’t think this COA thing doesn’t have “nightmare” written all over it….You are just in De Nile.

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  16. BMan

    Dabo’s probably wrong, but there is a gray area with regard to schools setting their COA number (i.e. Auburn). The equitable, though never to be implemented, thing to do might be to pay all players minimum wage for the time spent working for their sport. Then we’d see that 20-hour per week rule getting examined a little more closely.

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    • Macallanlover

      That is how I look at it too, similar to other student compensation paid by the profs, cafeterias, libraries, etc. Only problem with identifying it as compensation is how you don’t pay everyone on a scholly. Becomes unaffordable, and another terrible example to set.

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  17. Macallanlover

    Dabo is right about one thing, the schools/coaches/NCAA had better fix this before it begins, it has to be a level playing field. This isn’t about COA at all, and that term should be dropped because that is where the “game playing” comes in. It is spending money for the players who are limited/prohibited from earning money in the marketplace. Set a number between $4-6K and adjust when inflation makes it inadequate. If published numbers from schools are anywhere closet to accurate, this has already become a total cluster. Room, board, tuition, books, and a cash stipend for full scholarship athletes in schools, lesser scholarships for non-revenue positive sports.

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    • Dabo is right about one thing, the schools/coaches/NCAA had better fix this before it begins, it has to be a level playing field.

      What about the current landscape of college football IS a level playing field? It’s not like the schools that will pay the most aren’t already getting the best players anyways. The outgoing funds are just going to be re-directed from admin / coaches salaries and extravagant facilities to the players, but it ain’t like the incoming funds from TV are changing anytime soon. You won’t solve a price-fixing problem by creating more price-fixing.

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      • Macallanlover

        I don’t see the point. You can argue for years about which school has the best dorms, food, weather, trainers, education, tutors, etc but the cash for covering “outside” expenses is pretty danged equal all over. How does Auburn, TN, et al show a student needs more than UGA, or any other school when everything else is covered? Pure BS is what we are dealing with. The dollar ain’t worth much, but it is pretty equal when it comes to spending money.

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        • How does Auburn, TN, et al show a student needs more than UGA, or any other school when everything else is covered?

          My point is that no school should be told how much money it can spend on this stuff (i.e. price-fixing). If Auburn wants to spend like drunken sailors, that’s their prerogative. The rest of the schools can choose whether they want to compete or not with their resources at hand. Why is the free market some foreign concept when it comes to fans of college athletics?

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          • Dog in Fla

            Will there still be enough money left for palatial water falls?

            https://mobile.twitter.com/BamaChilld28/status/355046357733634048/photo/1

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          • Macallanlover

            But that isn’t what we are dealing with here. If it were truly compensation, I would agree with you. We are discussing COA, that is how it is being approached, and we have educators playing the part of smart people. That is why I propose it be looked at spending money tied to the scholarship. If we go all “professional, pay for play” then we can begin the free market discussions. I think it falls apart, and hope it does, before we get to that extreme.

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  18. Interesting to hear your take on Dabo’s comments, Senator. I feel like all the previous posts about COA re: UGA have a tone of “the Georgia way” and how it’ll be used against us on the recruiting trail.

    Are you now saying that it doesn’t matter if it’s used against us bc kids won’t make decisions based solely on COA?

    I have to agree with what MGD said above, this will factor into SOME decisions. Dabo is a bit whiny about it, sure, but Stewart gives the 18YOs waaay too much credit.

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    • +1

      Give this COA stipend a couple of years to begin flushing athletes through the system that were able to pocket it.

      I can’t wait to read/watch the report of an athlete after he has graduated/declared for the draft that says he chose school X over school Y because the COA stipend was higher.

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      • DawgPhan

        How is that different than a recruit picking a school because it has CFA on campus? Or any other reason that someone might use to support their decision.

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        • frowertr

          Because it’s money.

          The difference between a $3000 COA school and $5000 COA school is pretty large when factored over a 4 year (or longer with redshirts) period. A $8K-10K difference over the life of the athletes eligibility is a pretty large bargaining chip that WILL be used as a negative recruiting ammo.

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        • chick-fil-a … ? that would sway me 🙂

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  19. South FL Dawg

    I wonder why Dabo is coaching at Clemson instead of, say, Citadel. Surely not money. Because that wouldn’t be right to him.

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    • Dog in Fla

      “I wonder why Dabo is coaching at Clemson”

      Because he engineered the coup that led to the overthrow of Tommy Bowden midway through the 2008 campaign?

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