Justin Fuente: 'I'm not sure everything going on is good for the game'

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Sunday June 12, 2016


Justin Fuente questions if some changes in college football are good for the game, and he says it’s important for coaches to have staff members who bring an outside perspective on what a program is doing.

While on SiriusXM College Sports Nation, Fuente echoed recent comments by Nick Saban. Fuente is participating in some satellite camps, but not many. He’s not for sweeping changes to recruiting calendar, he says coaches need to spend more time with their current team in the summer, and he thinks some things allowable by NCAA rules are getting pushed too far.

“I’m not sure everything that’s going on is good for the game,” Fuente said. “At some point, as coaches, we’ve all got to take a step back and worry about the good of the game. Not all of us worry about what’s best for us at our current school. Really step back and try and make decisions that are good for the benefit for collegiate athletics and football. We’ve got to do a good job, as coaches, in having those clear conversations.

Everything gets a little carried away. It’s like anything. Sugar, a little bit’s good, and too much is bad for you. We can get over the top with things in our competitiveness. I think we need to dial those things back and focus on what’s best for the game.”

Coaches who don’t want to participate in satellite camps don’t have to. Several Power 5 programs have completely stayed away, and Fuente is keeping it to a minimum. 

Fuente was also asked about the idea of having a “no” coach. Someone who brings in different ideas or brings more context to a change within a program, whether it be how much a team practices or something else, and he said it’s vital to get have a perspective of what's happening outside the program walls.

“Those people are important. I would be surprised if most Division I coaches didn’t have someone like that, that they could bounce things off of, that had a pulse and a wider view of what’s going on, somebody to hash those things out and talk about what’s best for the program and where they’re going,” he said. “I’m one of those guys that likes having a few older coaches on the staff to bounce things off of or people that are off the field that understand the direction we want to go that I can have those conversations with, to try to help you look at it from a different angle and give you a little perspective.

“You’re sweating out 3rd-and-6, and maybe they’ve got a better perspective on what’s really going on.”

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to chris@coachingsearch.com.