Baseball: The recruiting process keeps accelerating
It's pretty amazing that UCLA Coach John Savage already has much of his pitching rotation lined up for 2013 with commitments from junior pitchers Hunter Virant (Camarillo), Max Fried (Montclair Prep) and Lucas Giolito (Harvard-Westlake), among others.
Of course, there's still time for late developers, but it's clear that recruiters are identifying prospects younger and younger, accelerating the recruiting process.
This is a tough call. Parents get upset when students don't make varsity as a freshman or sophomore, fearing it's going to hurt their college scholarship chances. But sometimes playing junior varsity or freshman ball is best for a player's development.
There's discussion in the NCAA about delaying when scholarships can be offered, which might lead to a last-minute stampede of decisions.
The key is parents and athletes need to educate themselves on the rules, get their academics in order and perform. Recruiters will find you.
-- Eric Sondheimer