There’s nothing anyone can really do about it, but something inside me always cringes when, after a coach changes jobs, I scroll through his Twitter feed and see him hyping State U. on Monday and Tech U. on Tuesday. Again, there’s nothing to be done about it — it’s just the nature of the business.
And that’s maybe what bothers me about it, it’s an in-your-face reminder that college football is a business and, in recruiting through social media, coaches are simply performing their duties as an employee of the university they work for.
However, I won’t have that same feeling when I see Brent Key recruit for Georgia Tech. A Tech alum, Key made largely a lateral move in leaving Alabama for his alma mater, a switch that makes no business sense but was an absolute no-brainer for the man on a personal level.
“Hell, this place is the most special place in the world,” Key said Tuesday. “… I went through this place. This place made me who I am today, okay? I know the truth about this place. People ask me, ‘How are you going to recruit to Georgia Tech different than Alabama?’ I said, ‘Shit, it’s going to be easier. It’s going to be so much easier. I’ve got more to offer. Tuscaloosa, Atlanta. Outstanding academics. We wake up every morning, look what’s in our hands? Technology…. Look where we’re at, in the epicenter of it all.”
MUST SEE: New @GeorgiaTechFB assistant & GT alum @CoachBrentKey is FIRED UP about bringing Tech back to glory. He says it will be easier to recruit to GT than his last job at #Bama "I've got more to offer" pic.twitter.com/7qmhsineqY
— Cody Chaffins (@Cody_Fox5) February 6, 2019
When Key hits the trail in Yellow Jacket colors, every single player, coach, parent, teacher, guidance counselor and janitor he comes across will know Key is pitching each recruit on Georgia Tech because he believes in his bones that Tech is the best place for that player to attend college, not because it happens to be the school paying him. That kind of credibility isn’t possible to manufacture, but it sure is beautiful to see when it happens.
With the passion of Key, his head coach Geoff Collins and the rest of the staff will bring to recruiting, watching Georgia Tech’s transformation from a niche academic school running a nice offense to a 21st century firebrand in the heart of college football’s most talented — and, thus, most competitive — recruiting metro areas will be one of college football’s most fascinating stories of the next few years.