Addazio's roster management
While bringing in the last few commitments is generally good news, it does raise one issue for Addazio going forward. Should the coach max out on scholarship players this signing period or save a little space for early enrollees in the 2015 class?
As it stands now, BC has 27 commitments in this class. NCAA requirements only allow for 25 scholarships in any given recruiting class, however, five of this year's class are early enrollees. Those guys -- already on campus -- count towards the 2013 class. Using NCAA math, that leaves BC with three early enrollee slots for 2015. Any new recruits who sign this cycle cut into the space Addazio would have next Spring for early entry.
Entering college early is no longer a fad. It is a recruiting tool to offer your best or most interested prospects. You sell them on the leg up they get by participating in spring ball. Players of all types have jumped at the chance to enroll early. BC has used the policy in varying degrees over the past seven seasons. Anthony Castanzo and Chase Rettig are probably the early enrollees who had the greatest impact on the program. The others are a mixed bag. Regardless of the success, there really is no downside to early enrollees. In fact at a place like BC that places a premium on graduation, the extra semester helps the players' credits too. If BC doesn't have any openings in 2015, they will have one less recruiting tool.
But as valuable as that time is to potential players, winning will always be a bigger recruiting tool. One flyer going to a marginal prospect right now may pay off next September. BC will be young and thin this Fall. If Addazio thinks he can get something out of someone right now, it is a risk worth taking. The known of a player now outweighs the unknown of a potential early enrollee in 2015.
I criticized Spaz endlessly for "banking" scholarships. I appreciated that the banking usually ended up rewarding a walk-on, I still think it put the team at a disadvantage. Why go into a fight with one hand tied behind your back? Places like Penn State and USC did everything they could to manipulate their rosters around scholarship sanctions. I never understood why BC would voluntarily not maximize our roster.
I am not going to hammer Addazio either way on this round of scholarships. Given churn and attrition the 2015 Class will be big too. However, the key is winning and I think every last player can help.
UPDATE: Reader Scott mentioned in the comments that early enrollees can count towards either class. So we could have early enrollees in January 2015 and those scholarships could be part of the 2015 class if the 2014 class is considered "full."