by | Feb 14, 1990 | Detroit Free Press | 0 comments

MEMO TO: Coach Big

FROM: Your humble assistant RE: Recruiting Progress

Well, boss, I thought you’d like a report from the field, seeing as we’re down to the BIG DAY in this year’s recruiting war. Besides, I’ve been sleeping on this kid’s porch for the last two weeks, and I sure could use some clean clothes, if you got any.

Like you always told me, boss, recruiting is sacrifice. And curling up in the cat box each night is sure a sacrifice. But it’ll be worth it if we can sign the one and only Buster (Booster) Cables, a sleek, slick, 6-foot-4, 235-pound tailback who, as we all know, might one day be the fastest sumgun in the history of college football, if he ever comes out of the house.

I reckon he’s been holed up in there for at least 13 days, which was the last time I showered. But don’t worry, boss. I’m not moving. What if Buster decides to stick his head out the window for a breath of air? Why, at least nine other recruiters would have pens in that boy’s face so fast, he could die of ink poisoning.

Man, I hope we get him. Buster alone could fill the stadium. The way he runs, we could name our price with NBC, CBS or ABC. Heck. We’d leave Notre Dame picking its nose.

As you know, Buster’s parents have called a press conference for tomorrow afternoon at the Convention Center. It seats 7,500, which should be enough for the reporters. I think Dean Martin and Rich Little are the opening acts. But personally, boss? I don’t think the kid’s made up his mind yet. If we could just show him the pictures of those cheerleaders again!

I told him what you said about him being “the best high school running back in the history of the world.” I think he went for it, too. Geez. You must really like him, boss. I mean, you’ve only said that to maybe 12 other kids that I can remember.

I hear people talking about the other stars from this year’s senior class, like Derrick (House) Wilson, the nose tackle from Shreveport who ate a whole side of beef in one sitting, or Jerry Lee (The Killer) Jergenson, that tight end who broke all those Nebraska state high school records, before the manslaughter charge. But I’m telling you, boss, old Buster (Booster) Cables has ’em all beat. And I’m gonna get him. Even if I have to sit here another month without changing my underwear.

Oops. What’s that — These guys really tackle the job Sorry. Thought I heard someone.

Of course, Buster hasn’t been able to go to school for a long time, what with all of us sleeping on his porch. Besides, the ESPN truck is blocking the driveway. They send Buster’s books home with some skinny kid with glasses. I tried grilling him, boss, but he’s a smart one.

I said, “What did Buster tell you?”

He said, “Buster says he misses his friends.”

I said, “Does he want to go east or west?”

He said, “He just wants to go outside.”

I said, “Don’t play dumb with me, kid. Is it us or Southern Cal? Wait. Is it that school in Texas? What did they promise him? A Corvette? Was it a Corvette? DAMN IT! WAS IT?”

He said, “I have to go to Boy Scouts now.”

He’s a clever one, all right.

Reminds me of all those other academic types, boss. The ones who complain that recruiting’s out of hand. Shoot. They talk like they never slept on a porch before. What’s the big deal? You don’t see us breaking through the kid’s window, like we used to. Why, just the other day, boss, the cleaning woman snuck out the back of Buster’s house, and, of course, we chased her down and tackled her, but after 30 minutes of interrogation, old Fitz from Larceny State said, “Aw, hell, boys. Let her go. She don’t know nothing.”

And we did.

So, as anyone can see, things are getting better in recruiting. Final choice is question of values And things will sure get better once Buster (Booster) Cables joins our other freshmen on campus in their new luxury cond– uh, I mean, dormitory. We’ll get him. After all, we made the best presentation, didn’t we? With the eight former Heisman Trophy winners and the rock band, Guns ‘N Oatmeal. I tell you what, boss. Paying those dozen girls from the Ford Modeling Agency to pretend they were freshman counselors was a stroke of genius.

The best part is, we didn’t do nothing illegal. When he leases that Mercedes for $1 a year from that booster, it’ll be strictly legit. And that on-campus job we offered him turning on the sprinklers? So what if it pays
$80,000 a year? Have you seen what a plumber charges these days?

Well, it’s almost dark. Pretty soon I’ll have to sneak to the window and see what game Buster is watching on TV. Like I said, I feel good about our chances. We’ll treat Buster right, make sure he gets all the things college kids are supposed to get. And we’ll even encourage him to go to class.

I just hope and pray, boss, that if we get him, he doesn’t one day let down his team, his coaches, his school and America by turning pro after his junior year. That really burns my bacon.

I mean, where do these kids learn their values?


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