If you don't already know about Seantrel Henderson, go here. If you know the back story, then you know that he was the #1 overall recruit in last year's class and he decided to sign with USC, despite all of the writing on the wall and every opportunity to go to virtually any school in the entire country. Let that set in for a second, here is a kid who could pick any college in the ENTIRE country and he just happened to pick one that went on probation just shortly after he signed with them. That sucks.
But there is a silver lining for Seantrel. He has been granted a release from his LOI at USC and is now free to reopen his recruitment and sign with someone else.
It is rumored that Seantrel is considering Miami as his destination. When we heard this we were a little shocked because A.) Miami doesn't have any room under the 85 scholarship limit, and B.) the last guy they signed, Latwan Anderson, never even spoke to the football staff because he was being recruited and signed to a track scholarship.
If Seantrel is headed to Miami, where are they going to put him? I guess he could throw a shot put for a little while until a football scholarship opens up.
We found the list below posted over at shaggybevo.com. Basically, this is Nick Saban's attrition since 2007 (this is not all of it, just what was listed at shaggybevo.com).
|2007 (25 Players Signed)||2008 (32 Players Signed)||2009 (27 Players Signed)||2010 (26 Players Signed)||2011 (22 Players Signed +2 GS)|
|Crump - quit football||Johns - arrested, cocaine||Dial - grades, juco||Grant - not renewed||Glenn Harbin - baseball|
|Elder - armed robbery||Bolton - grades*||Moore - grades||Sikes - not renewed||Demetrius Goode - transfer|
|Fanuzzi - transfer||Hood - MLB||P. Hall - transfer Div II||McKeller - medical hardship||Petey Smith - transfer|
|Hester - transfer||Jackson - transfer||Burnthall - quit team||Jackson - transfer||Brandon Moore - transfer|
|Lett - medical hardship||Lawrence - transfer||Fanney - transfer||Sims - din't qualify||Corey Grant - transfer|
|McGaskin - grades||Lewis - grades||Cardwell - not renewed||Pharr - medical hardship||Arron Douglas - died|
|Murphy - grades*||Matchett - medical hardship||Higgenbotham - transfer So. Ala||Talbert - medical hardship||Robby Green - released|
|Ricks - grades||Neighbors - bryant scholarship||Kirschman - not renewed||Woodson - not renewed||Kerry Murphy - medical hardship|
|Tayler - transfer||Preyear - kicked off team||Hester - medical hardship||Kendall Kelly - medical hardship|
|Farmer - transfer||Ray - MLB||Wes Neighbors - medical hardship|
|Smith - transfer|
* = guys who were resigned later so they get counted twice by websites like oversigning.com.
Quit - 1, kicked off - 2, Other Scholly - 3, Transfer - 7. MLB - 2, Grades - 8
Couple of things to note here:
1. Where would Alabama have been had they taken normal numbers and still suffered the same attrition? Or would they have had the same amount of attrition? Those are the primary questions. Had Alabama signed a normal amount of players (18-21) and still had kids transfer out, commit armed robbery, and fail to make their grades, there would be gaping holes in the roster that would have crippled the program for years.
Let's break it down by class: let's say in 2007 Alabama signs 21 guys and suffers the attrition of 10 players, that puts that class at 11 players; in 2008 let's say Alabama signs 25 in order to make up for the attrition the previous year, but suffers the attrition of 11 players, that puts them at 14 players.
The last time Alabama had back to back season with less than 20 players you have to look at 2002 and 2003, 19 & 19; that was the last time they were unable to sign extra players because of scholarship reductions. Here's their record: 2002: 10-3, 2003: 4-9, 2004: 6-6, 2005: 10-2, 2006: 6-7. 2007: 7-6. Could you imagine if they had to deal with only 11 & 14 players in back to back classes because of all the attrition? They wouldn't win a game.
2. How did Nick Saban miss on all these guys - he is regarded as one of the best recruiters in the country? Or, is it that Saban just runs through more players and the cream rises to the top? That has to be the case because we have already documented that he signed roughly 35-51 more players than Brown, Tressel, and Carroll.
3. Why does this even happen? Schools all over the country such as Notre Dame, Penn State, Ohio State, Texas, USC, etc. do not need to do this. Is it because the available talent pool is prone to that much more attrition and without oversigning to cover for it Alabama would be dead in the water, or is it because they prefer to go through more guys just to keep them away from the competition? Our historical research showed that they used to do it (oversign) for both reasons.
And for those that argue "those extra guys don't count because they didn't make it into school or they transferred out," we say, if they don't count then why sign them to begin with? Take normal numbers and deal with the attrition - why should Alabama, or any school for that matter because this is not about singling out Alabama this goes for any school, be allowed to subsidize its attrition while other schools take normal numbers and either avoid attrition by taking better quality (academic and character) guys or "take it in the chops," as Nick Saban would say, meaning if they have attrition then they have a hole in the roster until they can fill it with the next recruiting class. How is it that these other schools only take 18-22 guys every year and still compete on the same field for the national championship as a team that takes 28-32 and culls down their roster? You can thank the NCAA for allowing the oversigning loophole to exist, then you can thank the conference commissioners and athletic directors for allowing their schools to exploit the loophole, and finally you can thank the multi-million dollar coaches who exploit it. Hopefully one day you can thank us for helping to eliminate this from college football all together.
Bottom line: Either Alabama takes extra players to cover the expected attrition because they have to given the pool of players they have to select from, which means if they took regular numbers they might not be able to field a team, or Alabama takes extra players in order to have a larger pool of players to pick from thus pushing out lesser quality players by way of medical hardships, transfers, poor grades, violation of team rules, or armed robbery. Those are the only two reasons and neither of them are appealing. Anyone who thinks otherwise either doesn't get it or has an agenda.
One last comment on this. If Alabama (and other SEC schools) truly take more signees because the pool of players they have to select from dictates that they need to take extra to account for the mass numbers that won't make it academically, isn't that an indication of a much bigger problem? And what kind of message is it sending to kids? Shouldn't the message be: "if you want to play football here you need to be squared away academically or we can't even afford to look at you as a prospect."
Yahoo Sports made public yesterday documents it found during the investigation of USC's Reggie Bush receiving extra benefits. The biggest ticket item on the list is the $757K home that Bush's family lived in shortly while Reggie was at USC; the house was paid for by New Era financier Michael Michaels. It will be interesting to see what the NCAA does about this.