As we wind down the college football season, I’m getting more and more calls from agents and parents on issues regarding the 2016 draft. Some are related to agent selection, and many are related to leaving early. Maybe you have similar questions. This week, I’m going to discuss these topics and the different factors associated with the topic.
Today, I got a call from a recently certified agent who’s been in talks with a redshirt junior at a major BCS school. The young man is a receiver, and my friend asked what he should tell the young man, who’s strongly weighing departing for the draft.
The first thing I asked was, does he have the ‘three legs of the stool,’ i.e., size, speed and production? The agent responded that he has two of them: he’s put up wild numbers this year, and he believes the young man has sub-4.5 speed. The only problem is that he’s well below 6-feet tall. Though that’s not a deal-breaker, it’s become an important box to check. Of the 263 receivers who opened the season on NFL rosters, 193 were 6-0 or taller. What’s more, there are only 44 receivers under 5-11 in the league, and over the last three draft classes, only 32 are under 6-feet; 19 were undrafted free agents.
It all added up to a young man who probably fits as a late-round selection and maybe a camp guy.
On the other hand, he’s got enough credits to graduate. He’s fully healthy; there’s no guarantee the same will be true this time next year (and scouts are not especially forgiving). There’s a great chance one or more of the coaches on staff will be elsewhere next season, as well as his quarterback. In other words, he’s in a box.
My friend really wants to do what’s best for the young man, but he’s in a box, too. He’s already talked to scouting sources who’ve drawn the same conclusion. He can recommend that the young man put his name in with the draft advisory board, but given the new way the board is handling reviews, it’s unlikely there will be any useful information.
If he recommends that the kid go back for his senior year, he comes across as education-oriented and well-meaning, but if there’s an injury, it may dash the young man’s chance to do something special. If he encourages the receiver to leave early, he may look like the stereotypical greedy agent if he goes undrafted.
Unfortunately, many young men are facing a similar dilemma. There’s no clear, cut-and-dried answer. That’s what makes this time of year so difficult.
This week, we’ll discuss the factors one must use to make this decision. We’ll discuss the factors one must consider when seeking feedback from scouts, coaches and family members, and we’ll handle other questions we get via Twitter or in the comments section of this post. If you know someone facing this dilemma, I hope you’ll encourage him to check us out this week.