CultureCoordinator Blog

A huge percentage of players and coaches view major college football as a means to an end. Players sign their National Letter of Intent and coaches sign their next big contract because it’s a stepping stone to their bigger goals. Players are striving to get to the NFL and coaches are looking for greener pastures. Both are using the system.

We’ve all known this for a long time, but I was reminded of this truth this weekend when I shot out this tweet after Jalen Hurts’ inspiring performance in the SEC Championship:

A lot of people agreed with my thoughts, but a lot of people disagreed and many were even angered by what I had to say. Some of them even think Jalen hurts has been foolish. They all responded with some form of “It’s a business. Don’t shame kids like Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray who have transferred. These kids have to do what is best for them. You know these coaches are going to take the big contract and bail on these kids when they get the chance.”

True. Point taken.

What I quickly realized was that the tweet went viral and received lots of pushback because people are viewing college in one of two ways. First, their are those who think college football programs are a destination, the end of the journey, a place to commit your next four years to. People who think that way liked and retweeted my tweet because they want the players in their program to make the choices Jalen Hurts has made.

The other group of people see college football as a means to an end. It’s stepping stone along the journey not a destination. The destination is the NFL and the stakes are high because the payday can be so big.

The question you must ask yourself as a Culture Coordinator is this: Am I creating a destination or a stepping stone? More and more high school coaches are creating stepping stone programs. “We get players scholarships.” I’m not saying that’s bad, but if you’re a coach building a stepping stone program don’t be surprised when players demand playing time or are quick to transfer when they don’t get their way. If they want a stepping stone and thought they were getting a stepping stone they’re going to act accordingly.

Also, it’s important that all your stakeholders are aware of what type of program you are building. Your players, parents, administration and fans should know if you are a destination or stepping stone program because it will impact the choices you make and the way you run your program.

Are you building a destination or stepping stone program? Why?

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