April 27, 2009
Isiah Thomas is the new sheriff in whatever town would be the metaphorical equivalent of Florida International University basketball, and he's laying down the law early. Were you given a scholarship by Thomas' successor, Sergio Rocco? Tough luck, Chris Rozier. That scholarship will be taken from you in order to, I don't know, find some other talent, or something.
Don't sweat the details. Act boldly and with little regard for consequence. Those are the first two rules in the Zeke Managerial Handbook.
Unfortunately, the problem when you rescind scholarships from local players is you start alienating the wrong people. The "wrong people," in Thomas' case, is Rozier's high school coach, who is none too pleased with Isiah right now:
Wolfson basketball coach Bruce Rosebrock was bothered by the way FIU handled Rozier's recruitment at the end. "I think it could have been handled more professional, especially when you consider the people involved are supposed to be professionals," Rosebrock said. "I've gotten calls from several college coaches apologizing for the way that Chris was treated by FIU. They were apologizing for their profession."
Why does it matter Thomas angers one lowly high school basketball coach? Because recruiting is all about connections. If Thomas wants to land the second-tier Florida talent that will make his team successful in the Sun Belt, he needs to, you know, avoid pissing off entire swaths of high school coaches. Establish a bad relationship with one, and you could activate the whole swarm. They're like bees. Or Internet trolls.
(HT: The Spin)