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Meat Market: Inside the Smash-Mouth World of College Football Recruiting [Hardcover]

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Item description for Meat Market: Inside the Smash-Mouth World of College Football Recruiting by Bruce Feldman...

An account of the author's year spent inside the "war room" of Ole Miss head coach Ed Orgeron offers a close-up view of events leading up to National Signing Day 2007, when Orgeron and his Ole Miss staff picked twenty-five players from a list of one thousand names.

Publishers Description
"One of the most insightful books ever written about college football."
- The New York Times

"Easily among the best sports books of the new millennium."
- Paul Finebaum, columnist and radio host

In this unprecedented look at college football's secret season, Bruce Feldman rips the cover off the game's frenzied pursuit of raw talent, taking you deep inside the SEC war room of recruiting legend Ed Orgeron,the combustible Cajun who helped build national championship teams at the University of Miami and at USC. In a stunning, blow-by-blow account of the year leading up to National Signing Day 2007, the award-winning journalist shadows Orgeron and his Ole Miss assistants as they set about hunting high school students, pleading, plotting, and inventing ways to lure them to their sleepy Oxford campus. Packed with candid confessions and outrageous off-the-field action, Meat Market makes what happens on the field seem almost tame by comparison.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   320
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.1" Width: 6" Height: 1.1"
Weight:   1.2 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Sep 18, 2007
Publisher   ESPN
ISBN  1933060395  
ISBN13  9781933060392  

Availability  0 units.

More About Bruce Feldman

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BRUCE FELDMAN is the "New York Times" bestselling coauthor of "Swing Your Sword, " and he is the FOX Sports senior college football columnist, giving him unparalleled access to the new generation of quarterback gurus.

"From the Hardcover edition."

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Sports > Football (American) > College & University
2Books > Subjects > Sports > Football (American) > General
3Books > Subjects > Sports > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Meat Market: Inside the Smash-Mouth World of College Football Recruiting?

Watch the wheels coming off the wagon  Aug 11, 2008
I picked this up at the library for a short read, I have no great knowledge or interest in recruiting per se or SEC football, so my question is how typical of coaching or college football life this is. Because, especially for assistant coaches, it could be set in hell. The recruiting part of the book is a repetitive story of the interactions of Ole Miss and bunch of recruits, parents, etc.
The interesting part to me is watching a head coach, Orgeron, who seems utterly unprepared for the management aspects of his job and wondering if he is typical of the coaching fraternity or just a fish out of water. In fairness to Orgeron it is not clear how much real access to planning or thinking or how much understanding the author has. It may simply be that we are seeing the small corner of the picture that the author sees.
Orgerun, as presented, seems to think that overdosing on caffeine, yelling, and working from 5AM to 11PM is his job definition. It seems that there is no long term integrated recruiting plan but rather sessions where names are demoted and new names are sought out, even toward the end of the recruiting season. Coaches are required to join Orgerun in watching (the same?) recruit tapes over and over again when they might be sleeping, seeing their families, thinking about their jobs, or even, getting drunk. Maybe these are the only sessions the author gets in on so they are overemphasized but, among grown men they are truly weird.
The life of an assistant coach under Orgerun seems to have been sheer hell, no apparant direction except frequent change in direction, yelling, teasing, etc.
The book ends late in 2006 with some hopefulness for 2007. I looked up Orgerun in Wickepedia and 2007 was a catastrophe of major proportions. Orgerun got fired when he should have been shot. My sympathy is with the assistants and to a lesser degree, the players he recruited.
Amazing look into the forgotten part of College Football  Jun 4, 2008
Recruiting is where a team is made. You can only take a team so far if you don't have top flight athletes, especially in the SEC. Meat Market is a great look into the recruiting process, and how far teams have to go in order to get the top tier players. Coach O is an amazing character, and fits perfectly into this story.

Also, this books works because it shows a team that is trying to get back to the top. If it would have been about USC or Florida, it wouldn't have gotten the point across, as they get some recruits on name alone. This book does a great job of show the ins and outs of recruiting, and how much work actually goes into it, even during the season.

A great ready for anyone who is a college football fan, fan of the SEC, or wants to know more about the game.
A must read for college recruiting fans  Mar 30, 2008
The read is quite interesting and there are gathered a lot of terms and aspects which are find out along a program's (in this case, Ole Miss) recruiting year... Bruce Feldman find himself within the rebels war room and describes how Ole Miss staff faces recruiting, summer camps, workouts, on the road recruiting, etc... giving a lot of histories and curiosities which they find out in the process... Ed Orgeron is a recruiter guru and you'll understand some behaviors that you maybe didn't ever noticed about the recruiting market. It's well-written and will grip you.
All You Want to Know and More About College Football Recruiting  Feb 25, 2008
This book seemed as if it would never end. Never.

Over and over again, then over and over again. Yes, kind of like the recruiting process but this book needed a good editor, someone who could scale it down, make it more concise and directed. More focused.

Has some good insight into recruiting, especially as it relates campus and interdepartmental stresses and strains. But it never succeeded in making the coaches real flesh and blood people. They came across as cartoon like characters while Coach O, the ultimate cartoon character, ranted and raved. The book needed more character development of the coaches. It had facts, facts galore, but it never really made the coaches real live human beings. How, for example, did the recruiting demands affect their marriages and their family relationships.

A good idea, at the wrong time with the wrong staff and badly in need of an editor. Someone to corral the information in the book and give it focus.

When Ole Miss fired Coach O, this book was most likely rendered to the bargain table. If you are a college football junkie, buy it there, don't pay full price.
blue chip topic, good execution, but doesn't have the "it" factor  Feb 23, 2008
The events in the book chronicle the 2007 University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) recruiting season and focus on head coach Ed Orgeron. It sounds great in theory - to be a fly on the wall at a college football program. And after reading Michael Lewis's fascinating The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game about Ole Miss recruit Michael Oher, "Meat Market" sounded like a perfect behind-the-scenes companion guide. But unfortunately, there's not much variation or substance to this book.

There's certainly no shortage of unrecognizable recruit names and their esoteric statistics. And this feels more like padding than real content.

Further, nearly every single recruit in the book is portrayed the exact same way - their behavior is erratic and immature. The most highly touted recruit in the 2007 class - Joe McKnight - seems on the verge of signing with Ole Miss. But, he disappears the night before signing day... and commits to USC. And another running back, after initially committing to Ole Miss, turns around and signs with rival Mississippi, saying it was because they gave him the number 2 for his jersey. What's also redundant is the sheer number of players that have academic and behavior problems.

If there's a positive to "Meat Market," it's how the football coaching profession is totally un-glamorized. I now appreciate just how hard these guys work - how much research goes into recruiting and how hard you have to pursue a recruit. Ole Miss never does anything shady, but you get the feeling that lots of underhanded tactics come into play when you're in this profession. And you know it's a thankless job, because Orgeron was actually fired in the season that takes place after the events of this book.

Overall, "Meat Market" is decent, but I preferred "The Blind Side."

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