When it comes down to recruiting, every program has uniquely different things that they can offer recruits, that no other program can.
Regardless of what it is, recruiting all comes down to the idea of finding something that both attracts recruits, and sets your program apart. Often times, a first impression can go a long way. At Ohio State, part of their pitch is the varsity jacket that the coaches are wearing when they hit the recruiting trail.
Now some coaches choose to rock the team track suit or even go with a suite and tie on the road, but Ohio State's staff has decided to separate themselves from the crowd by wearing this letterman's jacket when visiting with recruits. Bold, recognizable, and simple yet flashy...all adjectives that will both describe the jacket, and catch a high school aged kid's attention.
Not only does the jacket stick out amongst a sea of coaches that visit each school in the offseason, but it is also stitched with stories and memories of the rich Buckeye traditions. Items such as patches that pay homage to undefeated seasons (although this season has not yet been added) and conference titles and even national championships litter the jacket. Not to mention that immediately recognizable block "O", and it's pearly whiteness, which only add to the effect it has on the eyes.
According the ESPN's article, Nike made only 14 of these jackets for the coaching staff and other key members of the staff. For manufacturers out there reading this, here at FootballScoop, we'd only need five.
Whether it happens to be jackets, or track suits, the bottom line is that Urban and his staff understand what is going to catch the eyes of recruits. And that in turn will win some fierce recruiting battles. For some programs that advantage is their uniform combinations, while for others it's their tradition, or history, or education.
The lesson here is to find your niche and then find a way to make sure recruits remember you and your recruiting pitch even after you leave. If you can do that, you'll be happy with your results come signing day.