The holiday season brings presents, family, good food and drink to many. At FAUOwlAccess.com
it also means it's time to intensify our basketball coverage and football recruiting
outlook.We also consider where the two meet.
One such instance happened Sunday. FAU basketball coach Mike Jarvis took the Owls to Maryland in part to challenge his young team. He also undoubtedly wants to keep a presence in the Washington D. C. area - a region he's quite familiar with after his coaching stint at George Washington.
The game was the Owls second in the D. C. area this season having already defeated American earlier this year. He'll be up there again in the coming years playing George Mason.
Jarvis, a former St. John's coach, also re-familiarized himself with New York when took the Owls to play Manhattan and will have FAU's name in Gotham papers on Wednesday morning after FAU faces Hofstra. (The Owls travel to Hofstra next year.)
Don't be surprised when a Boston-area school or two turns up on FAU's schedules in the future, allowing Jarvis to work the same recruiting areas he did while at Boston U.
Contrast that approach with FAU's football program. Realizing how fertile South Florida's recruiting grounds had become, FAU coach Howard Schnellenberger brought the University of Miami to national prominence by recruiting "the state of Miami."
Schnellenberger has stuck to that philosophy while at FAU, so much so that it catches our attention pretty quickly when the Owls pursue a football player from outside the Sunshine State.
Popular dogma would suggest that Schnellenberger should have a much easier time recruiting close to home because the area is richer in football talent. That gap, if it exists, might be closing. Eight Florida players are currently listed among ESPN's Top 100 recruits - six of them in the first 51.
It's hard argue with either coach's approach. Schnelleberger has a proven track record in South Florida and Jarvis has won everywhere he's been. Jarvis' strategy has already brought D.C, native Andre Mattison and New York baller Shavar Richardson to Boca Raton. And it's not like he's neglecting Florida, which has placed 10 players, including freshman standout Ray Taylor, on the Owls' roster.
The longer Jarvis spends at FAU, the more inroads he will make in Florida, too. One of the biggest differences between recruiting for basketball and football is that coaches can build or turnaround a hoops program with two or three good players.
Jarvis is widening FAU's reach, which can only be a positive. In the coming years, though, it will be interesting to see whether Jarvis will bring in more recruits from the northeast, or will he find that his time is better spent following the Schnellenberger doctrine?Passing on a thought:
My brother in law, Ned Blodgett, is in town from Atlanta for Christmas. When Urban Meyer first announced he was stepping down, Ned immediately offered this thought: Florida should hire retiring Florida State coach Bobby Bowden for a year, just to piss off Seminole fans.Owl Links:Owl Cal:
Men's basketball - vs. Hofstra, Tuesday at 7 p.m.