hughes, with teams who overlapped in pools of recruits, i used to only sign players i scouted, and never scouted the same state with two schools. which basically means i only recruited from a state with 1 school. when i was at UK and texas a&m, they were both high end programs, and i often would have to decide which school to scout with, for those states in between (like arkansas). this was a clear disadvantage. also, there was a time i naturally wanted to battle the same school for two guys, and i had to avoid that because i felt the other guy would feel i was intentionally double teaming him. so to me, having 2 teams in a world has ALWAYS been a clear disadvantage, in my mind, because of the steps i took to ensure i didnt gain an advantage. i dont know all coaches take it so far, but i do think most coaches make the effort to avoid situations like you mentioned.
when i had SIUE and UK just a couple hundred miles apart (A+ d2 and A+ d1), i would scout the same stuff all the time. they dont really overlap - i would search d1 with both, but just started a couple pages down with SIUE and didnt go too far with UK. by the time i got down in the 500s (overall) i was just skimming so fast with UK for a super growth player that i never would make connections like, oh that guy is pretty good, now i know his name and everything about him for my d2 team! when you are recruiting for a team, seeing hundreds of recruits, i find you remember very little about specific guys other than the few you are really interested in. i have a pretty good memory but not an eidetic memory. i regularly see guys on my d1 teams, when recruiting, where its like that guy would be good for d2, but its a flash, on to the next guy.
there is a small concern there - my approach was to recruit d2 first, and then d1, although that wasn't always the case. but generally, id make the effort to space those initial recruiting efforts out. by the time you get to the first cycle for d1, for a+ d1 at least, you are basically done going through guys. so id space out those out and would have no chance of remembering some random tidbit about a player i didnt even care about for that team. in the rare case i did both teams together - it was because i was in a hurry - blazing through them - not even really getting a chance to look for diamonds in the rough for my d1 team. my experience was there was virtually no advantage. on a couple occasions id notice a guy and go wow, that guy is really good for d2, and would recall that incident when i noticed the same guy on my d2 list. but never did something like that influence my decision to scout certain states. if i did have to recruit back to back, then i always did d2 first, so i would have already made my initial scouting decisions. now of course i might scout more later but after that time passes, theres no way im remembering that i saw a good d2 guy on my d1 team for .5 seconds as i skimmed through the bottom 200 recruits in my recruit search...
i am a little torn on the whole thing, because at one point, i spent a **** ton of time per team. then, i feel like i was collecting too much information, mostly, about what other teams were doing. in my prime, i could not morally maintain a d1 team on the east coast and another on the west - i was too in tune with what was going on, it would have been impossible not to have that information bleed over. at one point, i specifically dropped a west coast team because i was in a minor resurgence, and even though UK was probably 2000+ miles away, i got my mid major in the elite 8 and was going to start recruiting higher end players, and even though i cut my play time by a factor of 10, i was recruiting super intensely. so i dropped the team. but with the way ive played lately, i go so fast, focus so little, there is no issue at all, in my opinion. i largely trust other coaches to behave similarly. if, with your style of play, you find yourself in fairly regular conflicts, where you have to decide how to handle an interaction between the teams, then you should drop one or move one or whatever. if you find there is really no interaction, maybe every 6 months an extremely minor consideration comes up or something, then you keep them. i guess i cant expect you to trust other coaches like i do - and as ive said, id never allow multiple teams in a division in my version of the game, if i had one - but in this game, with things the way they are, and all the valid reasons coaches have for picking up multiple teams, combined with the population issues, it seems you have to give people the benefit of the doubt. especially when they had their teams while it was still legal to do so.