Vanderbilt coach James Franklin is not above using gimmicks to impress recruits — he does, after all, coach at Vanderbilt.
So he did his best Lane Kiffin (or Rick Neuheisel) impression on Friday by arriving to a couple high school games in Atlanta in a helicopter.
"We're out there at warm-ups, and this helicopter started flying in real low and over the game field," Central Gwinnett coach Todd Wofford told the AJC. "My student trainers were going crazy because they didn't know what was going on. They thought the helicopter was going to land on the game field."
Franklin stayed for the first quarter to eyeball a few prospects and then jumped back on the helicopter.
The next stop was the Walton-Lassiter game.
"It was crazy, this just helicopter comes out of nowhere in the dark sky," Walton offensive lineman Brandon Kublanow said. "Everybody at the game is watching the helicopter and not the game. It was supposed to land on the baseball field but it couldn't because of the power lines. It circled a few times, found the practice field for football, and landed on it. Pretty crazy, but pretty cool."
Franklin wasn't ashamed about his recruiting tactic. In fact, he even tweeted a photo of the helicopter before taking off. And let's be honest: At Vanderbilt, Franklin needs all the recruiting advantages he can get — especially when trying to recruit in Atlanta, the metropolitan spoke of a wheel that includes Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Auburn and South Carolina.
If he thinks a helicopter might lure some of the bigger southern recruits away from traditional SEC powers like Georgia, Florida , LSU, Alabama and Auburn and send them to Vandy, then acting like a baller might be his best recruiting strategy.
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And judging by the quotes, it definitely got the attention of the players.
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Graham Watson is on Facebook and Twitter: Follow her @Yahoo_Graham.
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