David Climer: James Franklin may be right, but his recruiting actions aren't

Vanderbilt coach James Franklin, right, gives Florida coach Will Muschamp, left, a pat on the back after Vanderbilt defeated Florida 34-17 in an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, in Gainesville, Fla.  (AP Photo/Phil Sandlin)

Photo by Phil Sandlin, AP2013

Vanderbilt coach James Franklin, right, gives Florida coach Will Muschamp, left, a pat on the back after Vanderbilt defeated Florida 34-17 in an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, in Gainesville, Fla. (AP Photo/Phil Sandlin)

NASHVILLE — James Franklin got this one right.

Like Coach Poach says, some players — maybe even most players — commit to the coach and not the school during the recruiting process. It’s sad, but true.

That is Franklin’s best defense for the end-around run by three players that previously had made public verbal commitments to Vanderbilt but instead are bound for Penn State, where he now coaches.

It’s easy to criticize Franklin but the blame is at least partially misplaced. The problem lies with the players and their advisors — be it family, high school coach or a talent broker — who fall under the spell of a slick-talking recruiter when they should be looking at the overall football program and the university.

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Comments » 6

Rockytop_Engineer writes:

if Penn State was ethical, notwithstanding past history suggests it isn't, management would tell Franklin that he cannot bring recruits to PSU that he collected for Vanderbilt on Vanderbilt's nickel. Franklin's behavior smells as bad as anything Kiffin has done. Good luck, PSU. You've gotten what you deserve.

FWBVol writes:

I've never had a good impression of Franklin and this does nothing to make it any better. But I would have less of a problem with the situation if Franklin was trying to bring with him kids that he recruited for Vandy that Penn State also was recruiting. Somewhere the NCAA has to step in and try to fix this problem.

IndianOutlaw writes:

It is a free country. I never cared for him as a person, too big an outward ego, but what he is doing is legal. Kids can switch until they sign. It is a coaches job to get the best for his current employer. Now one gripped when Butch brought a player that was a Cincy commit last year or when he stole a UNC (North) and Arizona State (Dobbs) commit late in the game. Get real folks and worry or do something about something that matters. GBO

FWBVol writes:

in response to IndianOutlaw:

It is a free country. I never cared for him as a person, too big an outward ego, but what he is doing is legal. Kids can switch until they sign. It is a coaches job to get the best for his current employer. Now one gripped when Butch brought a player that was a Cincy commit last year or when he stole a UNC (North) and Arizona State (Dobbs) commit late in the game. Get real folks and worry or do something about something that matters. GBO

But we were upset when Kiffin seemed to try and dismantle his UT recruiting class when he took the USC job.

I have no problem with a coach taking one or two players with him, but Franklin has basically dismantled the Vandy recruiting class.

As for Butch going out and getting North and Dobbs, that's no more than he's trying to do now with kids that have pledged to other programs. It's what every good coach in the country is doing.

As I said in my previous post, if a coach is hired by a school that is already recruiting a player that's one thing, but to use the recruiting you've used at your previous school to land a kid just seems more than a little wrong.

Snapshot writes:

in response to IndianOutlaw:

It is a free country. I never cared for him as a person, too big an outward ego, but what he is doing is legal. Kids can switch until they sign. It is a coaches job to get the best for his current employer. Now one gripped when Butch brought a player that was a Cincy commit last year or when he stole a UNC (North) and Arizona State (Dobbs) commit late in the game. Get real folks and worry or do something about something that matters. GBO

Your comparison of Butch Jones doesn't make sense. When he flipped North and Dobbs last year, he hadn't been the coach at UNC or Az. St., totally different situation than Franklin. Do you really think none of Butch's current commitments are being contacted by other schools? Of course they are, just as UT continues recruit players committed to other schools.

Plasticman85 writes:

He recruited these players on Vanderbilts dime. He is a scumbag for persuading them to follow him to Penn State.

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