I didn’t have anything this week that could hold up for an entire blog post, so today we’ll take you “into the lab” and touch on several projects we’re developing at ITL (plus a quick scouting observation). Here goes.

  • I’m really excited about the video my friend, Ric Serritella of NFL Draft Bible, made to help others understand a little bit about how we work to help people build their professional network in football. It’s here. We filmed it on location in Mobile, Ala., at the Senior Bowl and at the combine in Indianapolis. As always, I hope it conveys the right message to potential partners without being too self-promotional.
  • I’m also really excited about the first-ever ITL GM Academy, which is slated to take place later this month. We’ll have four former NFL GMs (Jerry Angelo, Billy Devaney, Tim Ruskell and Doug Whaley) who’ll be discussing the interview process and how to get the job; how to deal with the media; how to hire and build a staff; and building a relationship with the owner. Each of our experts will handle a 90-minute session on each of the four nights.
  • There’s a lot of concern among scouts that they won’t be allowed into schools this fall, and that’s very possible. But here’s how to maximize your chances: be the guy who sends thank-you notes with Batman and Wonder Woman stamps. I had a lengthy phone call with a longtime scout who is obsessive about sending personal notes to all the people he talks to on his school visits. He stamps them and writes the addresses before he even gets to the school, then writes a short note when he’s killing time waiting for practice or between film sessions. Then he mails them as he leaves town. He even adds flair by using stamps depicting cartoon characters and movie stars. That is all-star level respect for the people in the game.
  • Sent the manuscript for my next book to my editor today. I think I’m going to call it ScoutSpeak: Earning, Doing & Thinking About the Job of an NFL Evaluator. It will be about 150 pages, and Saints Assistant GM Jeff Ireland wrote an absolutely superb foreword for it this week. I can’t wait to get it published, hopefully later this month. I think I counted stories and quotes from more than 30 NFL scouts, past and present. This is my tribute to the industry.
  • I’m kicking around the idea of starting a podcast. I don’t have a name yet, but the idea would be to talk to some of the most influential people in the industry about how they see the business evolving and their own personal stories of how they broke in.

OK, that’s five. We’ll have a lot more in today’s Friday Wrap, that comes out later today. If you haven’t already, register for it here.