“Kids and parents and high school coaches and AAU coaches are very aware of what cost of attendance is about and they want to know the number,” says NIU men’s basketball coach Mark Montgomery.
“It’s already a recruiting topic,’ adds [Northern Illinois Football Coach Rod] Carey. “It’s not as big of one as it will become because schools are still figuring out how much and how they’re doing it. Once that has a year to go through, and then you’re going to have comparables. Then yea, oh yea, it’s going to be a recruiting topic.”
No shit, Sherlock.
We’re still in the feeling out stage, but I have a hard time believing that Auburn and Tennessee aren’t pimping out their stipend advantage on the recruiting trail. And why not? That’s what it’s there for. If it were me, I’d be pushing it hard. It’s not like there’s a downside to doing so.
Now do I think it’s decisive in every kid’s case? Of course not. For some, the difference in the amount of the stipend at schools may not be enough to overcome things like playing time, state pride or the perceived quality of a particular program. But for a recruit facing an all-other-things-being-equal choice, yeah, I suppose a couple of extra thousand dollars a year could be enough to swing a decision.
And as far as “Schools aren’t free to just make up a number, of course” goes… blogger, please. Come spend some time in SEC Country and let me know how that works.