If you haven’t read the NY Times story about Tennessee’s “recruiting hostesses” that editor Mike Persinger linked to on this blog this morning, you should. The NCAA is investigating—among other things—charges that these hostesses have been showing up at the games of Volunteers’ recruiting targets.
The story reads in part:
Marcus Lattimore, a running back who made an unofficial visit to Tennessee but said he would not enroll there, said multiple Tennessee hostesses attended a game at James F. Byrnes High School in Duncan, S.C., in September. He said they brought signs, including one that read, “Come to Tennessee.”
“I haven’t seen no other schools do that,” he said. “It’s crazy.”
The hostesses are considered representatives of the university, which would mean they could not recruit players off campus. Therefore, the visits may be considered violations of N.C.A.A. recruiting rules.
Two of Lattimore’s teammates, Brandon Willis and Corey Miller, have orally committed to Tennessee. Lattimore described the hostesses as “real pretty, real nice and just real cool.” He said he thought they had “a lot” of influence in Miller’s and Willis’s commitments to Tennessee.
People often wonder why the NCAA has all its rules and regulations. It’s because in trying to get an edge, many people will do whatever they think they can get away with—we’ve seen it in sports with everything from hitters on steroids, pitchers doctoring baseballs, NASCAR drivers “adjusting” their engines.
The bottom line on this hostess thing is that I can’t see college girls giving up their Friday nights and driving four hours from Knoxville to watch a high school football game without some encouragement from someone.
Ask yourselves just who that would be.