Recruiting against other top-level football programs is hard enough. Trying to wrestle a wide receiver away from the Yankees or the Braves is another world. It's hard to compete with a briefcase full of money, after all. Especially when the drop is perfectly legal.
So goes the recruitment of Lee's Summit (Mo) West's Monte Harrison. Harrison, who solidified his standing as a top-flight wide receiver by winning the offensive skill MVP at the Rivals Camp Series' St. Louis stop, already has offers from Nebraska, Kansas State, Arkansas, Michigan State and others. Vanderbilt joined that group just this week.
"Vandy is pretty exciting," Harrison said on Saturday. "The baseball team there is really good. I don't really know much about football, but I'm going to learn more on that. I can play both there."
Article Continues Below
The Commodores are just the latest to make things official. According to Harrison, things are starting to get serious with Ohio State and Oregon, too. His football recruiting is picking up steam weekly, but the allure of cash looms.
"[Baseball] scouts are worried about the senior class and I'm only a junior, so they really don't talk about [the draft] much," Harrison said. "But the people that talk to my coach and stuff are saying I could be a very high draft pick.
"It will just depend on whatever baseball throws at me."
Should Harrison choose to attend college, he intends to play both baseball and football. He's a long way from making that decision, though. Instead, the four-star prospect is letting things play out. Should he decide to enter the MLB draft and sign a contract after being selected, all of the football recruiting mail will be for not.
The time some athletic department's graphic design guy spent making a Photoshop of Harrison holding the Heisman trophy? Wasted. At this point, it's a gamble interested schools have to take. So football coaches will continue to chase a talented athlete that may never set foot on a college campus - a talented athlete that doesn't even have any time to take unofficial visits.
"I'm not sure on visits, but I'll have to wait for officials," Harrison said. "I won't be able to do anything this summer because of baseball. That's going to take all of my time."
The conversation about baseball is one he's use to having. He has it with reporters. He has it with friends. And, of course, he has it with coaches.
"They ask about baseball all the time," Harrison said. "They ask more than anybody. They ask me all the time. I just tell them that the decision is going to be a last-minute thing and that they have to understand that."
Nebraska is thought to hold a slight lead in Harrison's recruitment, but the two-sport star does not name any favorites at this point.