Now, Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen -- the man leading a coaching staff which legendarily told one player “You’re a baller!” and sent "a can of Swag” letter to another earlier in 2013 -- may have elevated the entire letter-barraging game to a new level, sending a Mother’s Day card to the Mom of one prized recruit.
The news of Mullen’s Mother’s Day letter to the mother of recruit Chase Johnson, a massive offensive lineman, was first reported by the Clarion Ledger. Before you ask, no, Dan Mullen didn’t know Chase Johnson’s mother outside of the fact that she is his mother. In fact, its pretty clear he is only interested in Ms. Johnson in her capacity as Chase’s mother, unless she makes a mean apple crisp that no one else knows about.
[Related: A special Mother's Day for this recruit]
Still, Mullen’s card to the mother Johnson clearly got his intended message across. Mullen claims that he and his staff intend to make Chase Johnson part of the Mullen family writ large, and Johnson seems to be taking the bait.
“I’ve always liked Mississippi State,” Johnson told the Clarion Ledger. “But I think it affected me. They believe family is number one. They are going to accept you and your family. They aren’t just recruiting you, they are recruiting your whole family.”
Clearly, this is a game changer. Coaches have attempted to woo parents of recruits for years, yet few if any have ever been bold enough to openly court them with the brazen transparency of a Mother’s Day card.
Whether other schools follow Mullen’s lead remains to be seen. Unfortunately, if recent recruiting efforts are any indication, it’ll only be a matter of time before every school is sending out Mother’s Day cards (and Father’s Day cards, for that matter) to every prospective recruit in the nation.
There’s only one clear winner here: The postal service. After all, we all know how hard up they are for cash these days.
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- Dan Mullen