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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

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    Josh Pastner
    Josh Pastner

    Text-message ban a bad idea

    Text-messaging has become as much a part of college basketball recruiting as AAU tournaments in this era.

    Even 72-year-old UA head coach Lute Olson makes it a frequent practice.

    But a new rule that the NCAA Division I management council has recommended would ban text-messaging between recruits and coaches.

    “”We’d have to find another way to recruit,”” said UA assistant coach Josh Pastner, whose cell phone is attached to his body as much as his arms. “”It would hurt. It would definitely cut off communication. We would have to be more aggressive with e-mail and everything else.””

    Under the new rules even e-mail contact would be limited, further harming recruiting efforts.

    As it stands now, coaches have no limit on sending text messages but are restricted with phone calls and in-person visits.

    If the NCAA Board of Directors passes this legislation on Thursday, the ban would go into effect in August. If it’s not passed, coaches would continue with the current limitless policy, but a story on ESPN.com said the board typically passes recommendations.

    That would be bad news for Pastner, who estimated that the UA staff texts every day, saying it’s this generation’s “”primary way of communicating.””

    For Pastner, texting helps the UA coaching staff build trust with the Wildcats’ recruits through communication because of the instantaneous nature of texting.

    But critics say it can be intrusive to have Division I coaches texting every day, a claim Pastner calls “”ridiculous.””

    “”Kids don’t have to respond, they’re not forced to,”” he said. “”They can respond at their leisure, they can tell you they’re busy with class and things. We’re very protective of that because we don’t want to run anyone’s bill up. We ask if they have unlimited text messages. We’re very careful.””

    College coaches are smart enough to know where that line is between maintaining a presence with the recruit and becoming annoying and ultimately turning the recruit off. If anything, text-messaging should be restricted only during the prospect’s school hours.

    Otherwise, with text-messaging becoming such an important part of mainstream culture for American teenagers, the NCAA will intrude on recruits’ rights and the ability of college coaches to successfully recruit.

    – Michael Schwartz

    Williams and Kobe have something in common

    Former UA forward Marcus Williams, who’s working out in his hometown of Seattle, said he hired Rob Pelinka of SFX as his agent.

    Pelinka represents former Wildcats Andre Iguodala and Channing Frye as well as Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant.

    Williams is headed to Las Vegas for more workouts next week and said he was unsure if he would go to the NBA predraft camp in early June.

    – Roman Veytsman

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