One of the main scapegoats fans use for Kentucky’s lack of recruiting success is budget. Especially in the aftermath of Big Blue Madness’s Broadway-scale production that is rumored to have cost almost as much as football’s entire recruiting budget, football fans often feel that football gets the short end of the stick with it comes to financing. However, when asked by Larry Vaught at this week’s SEC Teleconference, Joker Phillips denied that football had trouble securing funds for the recruiting budget:
“Each year what they go on (to set the budget) is what we have spent the past year,” Phillips said. “We have never even looked at it. We have never asked for something and not been able to get it.”
“We really have an unlimited budget in recruiting. We spent over $500,000 on airlines and official visits last year. That’s a lot of money. That is plenty for us,” Phillips said.
Okay. So if recruiting budget isn’t the problem, what is? If you don’t need money, what do you need? If money is a non-issue and we’re having a hard time recruiting players in our own backyard who want to player for higher-caliber SEC teams, shouldn’t Kentucky be recruiting on a more national level and reaching out to players a little further away? Obviously Mitch Barnhart wants the football team to succeed and is willing to do what it takes to compete in the SEC. Private plane to visit recruits? Better practice facilities? Ask, Joker, and maybe you shall receive.