By Caroline Alphonso
If Ryerson wants a piece of the championship pie, they’ll have to roll out more dough to recruit top players.
That’s the message the President’s Advisory Committee on Athletics and Recreation (PACAR) is giving the president Claude Lajeunesse.
Last Tuesday, members of PACAR met to approve next year’s budget. The only main increase in spending was for recruiting expenses, which jumped to $35,000 for next year from $18,000 this year. Now all they have to do is wait for the president’s and board of governors approval.
“Ryerson has to continue to be competitive with all the universities,” said assistant athletic director Chuck Mathies. “We are sensing a concern addressed to us by some of our coaches that the recruiting game is a challenge and you have to spend more time trying to convince an athlete to come to Ryerson.”
But Mathies said he is still not sure how the money will be spent. It could be used to subsidize the travel expenses for those who are now recruiting or to hire more recruiters.
“What we need to do right now is to provide a provision of support,” Mathies said. “I’ve heard that there were a number of potential athletes that [the coaches] had for men’s basketball that just didn’t materialize.
Ryerson’s lack of notoriety, funding and fan support doesn’t help when scouting potential recruits. By dipping into the athletic budget and increasing the recruitment fund, all Ryerson teams will be hoping to entice more players to join the fold.
Bob Fullerton, director of athletics, said other universities have a large pool of faculty that are able to recruit players. Meanwhile, Ryerson has to depend on its coaches and assistant coaches, who also have other responsibilities. But he said the school has to get its name known.
“Ryerson is now a full-fledged university in the minds of student athletes,” he said. “We have to get it in that we’re top level with anybody else.”