Aug. 3, 2018

This email is directed at anyone in the pro and college football business. Already a client? Here's a review of the week. Not a client? We'd love to have you aboard.
The Week in Football: July 28-Aug. 3
With college football teams reporting for fall camp across the nation this weekend and the first games of the '18 season just about three weeks away, it's time to sharpen up a few of our features. At the top of our list is, well, our lists - our 2019 ITL 250 and our 2020 ITL 100, the compilations of top players we focus on as the players who'll most likely be in Indianapolis in about six months (yes, that soon) and on draft boards in about eight months.

About a month ago, our Director of Scouting, Danny Shimon, reviewed our original ITL 250 list and made several cuts and additions. The result: he removed 97 players that didn't measure up and replaced them with 97 more. Check out all the additions and subtractions here. This week, he gave the 2020 ITL 100 the same treatment.

The finished product was quite a departure from our initial list (which was actually a little more than 100, by the way). We rolled it
South Carolina QB Jake Bentley is among the additions to the 2020 ITL 100 this week.
out here.

We wound up with exactly 100 names this time after Danny dumped 47 players and replaced them with 39 others. The replacements mainly came from big schools (though Eastern Michigan had two and Central Michigan, Memphis, Duke, Toledo and Buffalo had one each), with the lion's share coming from traditional football powers ( Michigan State and South Carolina had three each, while Clemson, Florida, Oregon and Texas had two each) and heavyweight conferences (10 from the SEC and seven from the ACC). Surprisingly, eight of the 39 are inside linebackers, most at any position. Seven are wide receivers and five are defensive ends.
Once camps get under way, injuries occur and depth charts get jumbled, we'll review and update our ITL 250 and ITL 100 lists once more by the end of the month. For now, however, consider our lists to be a good snapshot of the '19 draft class. We'll continue to work on them and improve them as we enter only our second year with these features.

In the meantime, here's a look at what else we heard, saw, read and said in the world of football this week.

2019 Contact List: This week, we completed an update on our popular list. To date, we've confirmed phone numbers for the parents of 112 members of the '19 draft, including 41 seniors rated in the top five at their position by NFL Draft Scout. This year, we expanded our list to include juniors, and we've got 20 members of the 2020 and 2021 draft classes whose parents' numbers we've confirmed. Several of them are from the top programs in college football like Clemson (two), Kentucky (two), Florida, Alabama, Auburn and others. What's more, with our newly updated 2020 ITL 100, we'll be adding even more numbers in the coming month. For years now, we've been offering our Contact List as a step-saver for people interested in contacting parents to get the ball rolling, recruiting-wise. Want in? Click here to purchase. Want to know exactly who made our list this year? Click here and we'll ship you a list.

The ITL Scouting Department: With camps kicking off, seasoned contract advisors are returning from weeks of travel to schools' agent days and preseason meetings with prospects and their parents. But maybe you're still waiting for the results of the agent exam, and you want to know if the players you'll start recruiting in a couple months are really of interest to NFL teams. We can help. The ITL Scouting Department is loaded with former evaluators who have worked for NFL teams, and they're on call for our clients (and even for ITL non-clients at no extra charge). For the rest of the month, we're offering our scouting reports for $50 plus tax, half of what we'll charge once the season starts. If you're considering a report, but aren't sure what you'd be getting, let us know and we'll be happy to send some samples from last year. Remember - it's much better to find out in August whether a player has the goods before spending months recruiting him and thousands training him. Ready to get started? We're here. Let's get rolling.

Succeed in Football: If you follow the Twitter accounts of members of the '18 draft class and/or the Alliance of American Football account, you know that several players have been signed to AAF deals this week. Today in our weekly blog, we asked several NFLPA-licensed contract advisors how they'd handle agent fees for players signed to AAF deals, which are pretty similar to NFL practice squad contracts, money-wise. We got a wide range of responses, including the following:
  • "Probably the same thing I am charging on the NFL side, three percent. I've had four sign this week, and another two on the way. At AAF salary, that's an additional ($12,000) that I wouldn't have had. And it doesn't break their bank, either."
  • "I don't plan on charging them anything."
  • "Hmm. Good question. Haven't given it much thought, but will (probably) just choose to match whatever is on their NFLPA SRA, just to stay consistent."
  • "At first I wasn't going to charge anything. Then I realized 3% of ($70,000) is actually a decent amount of money, so I'm charging 3%. I had to work to get these guys signed, too. They basically make as much per week as practice squad guys. Not bad at all."
  • "Haven't even talked about that yet, but I would assume 3% at least, just like if the player went to the CFL."
  • "Nothing. NFL contract only. I don't even charge for CFL. I look at it as giving back - it wouldn't be enough to make a dent. I do try to recoup my training costs but no commission."
  • "We've discussed it and at this point I'm looking to get some of my expenses reimbursed. Earlier today I was looking on the AAF site and didn't see agent regs (max agent fee) or agent registration fees, unless I missed it. I'm hoping they don't have registration fees if you are certified by the NFLPA."
Make sure to check our blog regularly for discussion of topics related to the game, whether you're a scout, agent, wealth manager, coach or someone else connected to the game. Get started here.
The ITL Newsletter on the NFL Draft Process: This week, in our second offering of our popular newsletter, we opened with an introduction of Inside the League, followed with a quick overview of the next 10 months for NFL draft prospects, and then discussed NFL scouts in Wednesday and Thursday's editions. This week, we'll continue our look at scouts with a look at a scout's typical day, how they work with and relate to agents, and then turn to combine prep and the training draftees undertake in January and February. If you're a parent interested in knowing the process better, there's still plenty of time to be part of our distribution list. Just let us know and we'll add you. Our newsletter is free and available to anyone.
2019 Profile Reports: They came out in somewhat irregular fashion, but this week, we focused on five more schools as we continued our trip through FBS football. After no schools on Monday and Tuesday, we looked at North Carolina, New Mexico State and New Mexico on Wednesday. Then, after no reports on Thursday, we wrapped the week with reports on North Texas and Northern Illinois today. We'll be back with five more schools - Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio, Ohio State and Oklahoma (at the least) - next week as we make the turn and work on the last 51 schools on our list. Make sure you're keeping up with all the info we're providing, school by school, by clicking here.
Rep Rumblings: This week, we had reports Monday, Tuesday and Thursday as the business was crackling with recruiting for the '19 class plus Alliance of American Football developments and other moves. On Monday, we looked at the AAF, it's hiring schedule for this fall, more on how its contracts will work, and how its scouts and evaluators will canvas the nation. We also had the latest on the chase for Jameis Winston and coach-agent relationships for our big board. Tuesday, we looked at an exciting new event slated for next week, the Personnel Symposium slated for Nashville Aug. 8-9. The schedule is full of exciting speakers, many of them former NFL scouts and most of them members of NCAA personnel departments, who'll be talking about the art of evaluation one last time before camps kick off this month. Inside the League will sponsor Blake Beddingfield, the Titans' former Director of College Scouting, who'll be part of a panel Wednesday at 5 p.m. at the Omni Nashville. He'll join Senior Bowl Executive Director Jim Nagy (an ex-Seahawks scout), Alabama's Bob Welton (former Brown scout) and South Carolina's Matt Lindsay (formerly with the Eagles) as they discuss scouting and how to break down prospects. We also looked at the latest XFL developments and more coach-agent relationships. On Thursday, we looked at the AAF's general managers and the decision-makers who are filling out rosters these days. We also had scouting developments in the CFL; recruiting buzz regarding interesting players at New Mexico State and Virginia; and another coach-agent relationship we unearthed. It's easy to catch up on all the buzz, notes and scoop from across the game that has turned up in our Rep Rumblings this year. Just click here.
Next week: It's August. The Hall of Fame Game is in the books. College players are returning to campus. Vacation is over, and it's time to get back to work. Of course, the work never stopped for us. The 2019 Contact List is updated and ready for orders, and we've got plenty to catch up on ( Agent Changes and Profile Reports come to mind). There are also a few things on the calendar worth noting. We're edging closer to the 2018 MLBPA Agent Exam, and don't forget, we have a practice exam on the site ( register here). There's also the Personnel Symposium in Nashville, which will feature ITL's Blake Beddingfield, among others. We'll also start gathering up regional scouting assignments from our contacts at schools across the nation for our Scouts Grid by Team, and we'll stay on the trail of AAF signings and developments on Twitter and in our Rep Rumblings. We'll have five more schools in our Profile Reports ( Northwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio, Ohio State and Oklahoma); we'll continue rolling on the ITL Newsletter on the NFL Draft Process; and we'll update the Succeed in Football blog. There's plenty to do, but it's just another week in the football business. There's nothing better. Don't believe us? Come and see.

Inside The League is the consulting service for the football industry. We work with the contract advisors for about two-thirds of active NFL players as well as the combine trainers, financial planners, scouts, coaches and other pro league organizers that make up the game. Cost is $29.95/month, and you can cancel at any time. To register, click here. Also check out our new free blog, Succeed in Football. Copyright Neil Stratton and ITL 2015.

Sincerely, Neil Stratton
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