FAYETTEVILLE — The Division I Council, as expected, has announced the recruiting dead period for all sports through Aug. 31.
As far as football is concerned, that isn’t very impactful. Beginning in September that is a different story. In August, high schools and junior colleges are ramping up their own practices preparing for the season that starts later that month or early September. Thus the prospects wouldn’t be able to visit very many campuses at that time.
Come September it’s going to be very important that schools can start hosting football prospects. No official visits have taken place to this point. That means colleges are going to be forced to host prospects during the season for official visits.
The University of Arkansas has always hosted some prospects during the season, but preferred to bring them in the spring, summer or following the season. That allows the coaches to spend more time with the recruits and their families. But now they have no choice.
For instance, last year Arkansas had already hosted 13 official visitors by this point. In the Class of 2019, the Razorbacks had hosted 16 official visitors by this time. Numbers at other schools are probably similar.
Sam Pittman and his staff have had two Junior Days and hosted some virtual visits. But they haven’t had a recruit on campus since March 9 when Kaidon Salter took an unofficial visit.
The Hogs have 12 commitments at this time and appear to be the leaders for at least three other prospects.
Pittman and his staff as well as football coaches around the nation have to really hope the COVID-19 doesn’t prevent the season from happening and also it isn’t so severe that recruiting visits don’t resume on Sept. 1.
The NCAA’s Early Signing Period for football is Dec. 16-18. The traditional period starts on Feb. 3, 2021.