Anyone who follows the hellacious shitshow that is college football recruiting is familiar with popular recruiting websites such as Rivals, Scout, and ESPNU. Sadly, thousands of grownups invest countless hours and ill-displaced attention on the every movement of some understandably uneducated high school junior or senior as the kid selects his party destination for the next few years of his life.
The Boulevard wrote an article a few weeks ago covering the owners of Rivals’ Texas and Texas A&M sites getting into an embarrassing Twitter fight, in which they argued where five-star quarterback prospect Kyle Murray would land (he ended up with the Aggies). This is just one of many examples where grown men completely lose their shit over a teenager’s college decision. And that’s coming from me, a die-hard college football fan who’s willing to put his life savings on the line on a seasonal basis. Shit’s gotta stop.
It looks like Rivals is only providing the gas for our trip down Insanity Lane with the addition of two 2021 prospects to its recruit database. For the love of everything left sacred in this world, please make this stop.
Let’s take a look at the two 13-year-old prospects listed here.
Who the fuck has the balls to list this 5’2″, 105-pound kid as a “pro-style quarterback” prospect? Where in the hell are they even obtaining this information? Is this his dad’s work? I hope it’s not your dad, Daron. For God’s sake, the kid probably can’t throw the ball farther than 30 yards downfield and we have already anointed him a “pro-style quarterback.”
I used to coach youth football and I coached some very talented kids, too. Evaluating talent wasn’t always the easiest thing because half of these damn kids hadn’t hit their growth spurt yet. I’m sure Daron will add a few more inches and at least more than half of his current weight to his frame before he leaves high school, but unless this kid is a bastard child spawned from the Manning clan, there’s no way you can tell me he is already a “pro-style quarterback.” I’m honestly starting to believe any parent with a damn iPhone and DIY attitude can upload his kid’s shitty home movies and try to pass them along as “game film.”
From the picture, our initial analysis of Daron Bryden:
• Gym rat
• Scrappy, hard worker
• Very cerebral
• Strong team leadership
• A little overconfident with his passes (based on him currently standing a mere two inches taller than legitimate midget status, barely weighing more than a buck, and the smug, Bieber-esque look on the tween’s face)
Let’s take a look at this next kid.
Tyson stands at a pretty impressive 5’11”, 170 pounds in sixth grade. Alright, maybe Rivals is onto something here. Maybe we have a true prospe– Wait, he plays running back? What the hell is this kid doing playing running back? See, this is another gigantic oversight when you start to scout kids who only know Miley Cyrus and Ariana Grande because of their Disney shows. I am going out on a limb here and assuming Tyson is probably the biggest, strongest, fastest kid for his age in the Springfield, Mass., area.
His coach, almost certainly a dad who is reliving his glory days and still lining up in the wishbone or some ancient shit like that, has absolutely no clue how to develop Tyson as a football player. He’s stuck in “GIVE TY THE BALL” mode. We’ve all seen it before. The kid who was a star because he was just bigger than everyone gets his ass handed to him by the seniors during day one of high school two-a-days, only to have him quit a week later and pick up an early marijuana habit.
I don’t even blame his coach. Shit, if it’s either win or develop this kid to be a fluid, intellectual receiver, I’ll take the wins every day of the week. Tyson may have potential, but the fact that he most likely carries the team on his back running the same play over and over has me believing he will end up at a D3 school reminiscing about his time when he was not only the top running back, but the ONLY back, in his class on Rivals.com.
Our analysis of Tyson Thornton:
• Marshawn demeanor on-field (he probably dives in the end zone in the “Hold my dick!” pose for every one of his five touchdowns every game)
• Marshawn demeanor off-field (his dead stare leads us to believe your question doesn’t resonate with him — you have to give him time to answer, and even when he does, expect a two-word response of “I dunno” or a grunt with a shoulder shrug)
Hey, Rivals, let us know if you need any more help analyzing early teen football prospects, because it’s never too early to throw wild accusations around about the future endeavors of these kids, especially since their parents aren’t already doing this enough. In the meantime, your “talent scouts” should probably focus on juniors and seniors who continuously go under your radars. Just go back and look at the top classes from 2009 on. Someone is getting fired for those horrendous rankings, right?.
Image via YouTube