Developer Chat

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Thursday, July 10, 2008

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM EST


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Thursday, July 10, 2008 at 1:00 PM EST.

We will be introducing 3 changes to recruiting - limiting of class sizes to a maximum of 6, having AI schools go after undecided recruits after signings begin and prior recruiting efforts will begin to carry less weight with recruits as the signing date approaches and a scholarship has yet to be offered.

what happens to nonqualifiers - I hope and assume that this will not mean that a nonqualifier will lose the chance to have an SR5 season if there already are 6 SR in that class - I would expect SR and SR5 to be treated as separate categories what happens to redshirts - if I redshirted a guy last season, will that mean that I can bring in only FIVE freshmen, lest I have more than SIX freshmen, including the redshirt freshman??? (fd343ny - Hall of Famer - 3:20 PM)

Non-qualifiers are not impacted by this change - the system views Seniors and 5th year Seniors differently in terms of class makeup.

RE: - AI schools will continue recruiting after signings begin and only go after undecided recruits. Q1: Does this mean that Sims will not use all of their budget up front and reserve some cash for the period after signings have begun? Q2: If a Sim is on a recruit's considering list but not signed, will the school not allocate any more cash for that recruit to battle other schools? (netgymrat - Hall of Famer - 3:23 PM)

Correct on question #1 - there will be a slight decrease in what is spent upfront in case they need to sign players later during the recruiting period. Sim-coached schools will NOT re-recruit a player they were already going after at the outset of recruiting if they are losing a recruiting battle. They will only go after recruits which are undecided and that will only happen after the signing date.

With the large amount of schools in RL that sign more then 6 FR in a class, shouldn't this be curbed by an increase in transfers instead of a hard cap? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 3:27 PM)

There are instances of schools in real life signing more than 6 kids in a single class, but that is rare and in Division I, they have 13 scholarships per team. It's even less frequent in Division II (in real life) where they have 10 scholarships available.

What will happen to the teams who currently have 11 SO on their team? Will 5 of them disappear? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 3:28 PM)

This change will be effective on a go-forward basis - teams which currently have more than 6 players in a single class will not be impacted.

What prompted these recruiting changes? (jaisonline - Hall of Famer - 5:25 PM)

Additional realism and more strategy. Certainly a decrease in interest in a school that has not offered a scholarship is going to be more realistic than today where the recruits are optimistic to a fault that they're going to get a scholarship offer - causing them to potentially pass up good opportunities with other schools.

Having the sims go back after undecided recruits addresses a couple of issues. First, the lack of talent at most sim schools makes them unappealing for new coaches trying to move up. It also hurts a conference's RPI putting coaches in conferences with large numbers of AI schools at a disadvantage. Finally, the fact that kids were signing with schools in lower divisions when there were numerous scholarships at upper divisions was unrealistic.

With regards to the last change, while we realize that the NCAA no longer institutes a 5/8 policy so instituting a cap of 6 is not realistic in that sense, it does address an issue of maintaining completely unbalanced classes. We certainly could have made other changes that would have made extremely difficult to sign more than 6 kids in a class but we felt that simply putting a cap in place would serve the same purpose without the surprise.

Scenario: I've got a team with 12 open scholarships and a budget for 6 ... I manage to sign 6 freshmen, but I don't like any of the available JUCO or Transfers. Under these new changes, will I be able to carry over 25% of my remaining recruiting budget to next season or do lose everything? (infinitebob - Hall of Famer - 11:32 AM)

You still have to fill all of your scholarships to be able to rollover recruiting budget from season to season.

Do you forsee any changes in carryover? (swamphawk22 - Hall of Famer - 11:50 AM)

Not at this time - after this set of changes is implemented, we'll re-evaluate to see if any additional changes are necessary (carryover, budget caps, etc.)

Some teams in HD are comprised of only SF's. One is recruiting players with the last name "Smith" exclusively. Coaches out there recruit an entire team of high PER players or a team with all players under 10 in defense. What makes having a class of 7 FR so much of a problem that there must be a change made to the sim? Will you be limiting the amount of SF's we can have on our roster as well? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 11:53 AM)

There is nothing inherently beneficial by having all SFs or all players named Smith (unless all of your SFs are Seniors or all of your Smiths are Seniors) - as opposed to the definite benefit a coach receives by having 10-12 upperclassmen which, on average, have better ratings and higher IQs.

Why wasn't this change made 20 seasons ago when godmaker was winning titles in Naismith using "superclasses"? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 11:57 AM)

We have made numerous changes in an attempt to curb super-classes such as limiting recruiting budgets, decreasing carryover amounts, the addition of transfers, players leaving early for the NBA, etc. but the bottomline is that certain coaches are still able to game the system by doing just enough to keep all of the players happy enough to not transfer so they can keep their superclass together for 4 years.

Superclasses - will you now be restricting which players can be redshirted if it drops them into a class of 6? (mullycj - Hall of Famer - 11:58 AM)

If you have 6 scholarships open and have a redshirt freshman already on your roster, you'll only be able to fill 5 of those scholarships with HS Seniors - the other scholarship could either be left open or go to a transfer or JUCO player.

Currently, JUCOs are players who were not recruited as Freshmen. Usually these players are passed over because they have major flaws or are low in key skill areas. With these changes, will you now begin generating some decent quality JUCOs for us to recruit? (Weena - Hall of Famer - 12:02 PM)

There are two types of JUCO players - those that are generated as JUCOs and you'll primarily find those in DI (this is how season 1 of a world has JUCO players) and those players that were not signed the prior season and decide to play JUCO ball. Some of those players received scholarship offers but did not qualify and chose not to sit a year and some of those players did not receive a scholarship offer so they had no choice. Either way, JUCO players do show substantial increases in both skills and IQ during their season (or two) in JUCO.

With the SIM AI schools now getting the chance to recruit again after signings have begun, can we expect to see dramatically fewer dropdown players at the DII and DIII levels? If there are fewer dropdowns, can we expect those players that would have dropped no matter what to drop sooner with this change? How much extra cash can we expect the SIM coaches to save for their second round of recruiting? (z0601 - Hall of Famer - 12:06 PM)

It really depends on the number of AI schools in a given world and in a given division within that world. The more AI schools you have, the fewer dropdowns you should see. This should create a strategy decision for coaches in DII/DIII as to whether they are going to go after the best available recruits at the outset of recruiting or take the chance that players will fall through the cracks at a higher division. The timing in terms of when recruits begin to widen their circle is not changing.

What happens in the remote chance that a Junior qualifies for a Medical Redshirt at a school that has 6 Sophs already? (Weena - Hall of Famer - 12:07 PM)

Medical redshirts are exempt from the class size limitation. Since injuries can't be controlled by coaches not named Chaney, it's difficult to bank on season-ending injuries to build up a superclass.

If I'm reading between the lines, I'm seeing an effort to make SIMs more competitive - not just for the sake of the current humans in their conferences (for RPI) but also to attract a human coach to them. Why not take one more step and allow SIMs to RS kids? (rockyg13 - Hall of Famer - 12:38 PM)

Good question and that's on the list as future addition.

Does "recruiting efforts will begin to carry less weight" mean a reduction in the considering credit or an actual reduction of the recruiting effort itself? In other words, is it based on how long a school has been on the considering list or simply how close to the signing period it is? (Weena - Hall of Famer - 12:47 PM)

It's an actual reduction in the recruiting effort you've already made, e.g. let's say you've built up 1,000 recruiting points and he's considering you but you're unwilling to offer a scholarship since he's really a backup option for you in case you lost out on your primary target. As the signing period approaches, the 1,000 points will start to erode if a scholarship has not been offered and it will continue to erode until one is offered. The rate of decline is also based on how many other options the kid has - so if you're the only school that has contacted him, it will be slower than if he's been contact by numerous schools.

the follow up to porks question about the 11 SO teams is naturaly gogint be. Is there anything going tobe done to help that team come time to fill 11 scholarships or will the only possiblity be to recruit 6 freshman and 5 transfers/Juco's (Fregoe - Hall of Famer - 1:03 PM)

Those teams are grandfathered in so we won't be forcing them to drop 5 players from their sophomore class but after those players graduate, they'll be able to have a maximum of 6 freshman and the rest, if they choose to fill all of them, will have to be transfers or JUCO players.

Will Sim AI be held to this restriction as well or will they continue to sign 8-9 FR in one class? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 1:08 PM)

No, AI schools are not held to the class size limit, at least not initially but it may be an area we revisit down the road.

followup on SIM recruiting of undecideds - you said "They will only go after recruits which are undecided and that will only happen after the signing date." Do you mean that it will happen immediately after signings start, at some fixed time after signings start or will different SIM coached schools engage in further recruiting efforts on undecideds at different times? (fd343ny - Hall of Famer - 1:12 PM)

It will not begin immediately after signings start - we want to allow human coaches who have lost recruiting battles time to go after their backup targets before the AI's make another trip to the buffet line. At this time, I do not know if it will occur once for all AI schools or if it will be staggered thoughout the end of the recruiting period.

Regarding undecided recruits after signings begin. Will a recruit possibly be considering an AI team and a human control team in the same cycle. It sounds like 2 AI teams won't be competing for the same player. (appleseed1 - Hall of Famer - 1:17 PM)

No - the AI schools will only go after undecided recruits and that will only occur after all human recruiting efforts have been processed for that cycle so you don't have to worry about ending up in a battle with an AI school after signings have begun.

Any particular reason WIS decided not to just adopt the 8/5 rule? Realism issue? (kcsundevil - Hall of Famer - 1:18 PM)

We thought about implementing the same rule that the NCAA used (but does no longer) but felt as though 6 would provide coaches with more flexibility.

Was the class size limit implemented to create more fairness in recruiting based upon the prestige of the schools? It seems that it would then give lower prestige schools a chance to get more talented players. (artie40 - Hall of Famer - 1:20 PM)

That was not the intent of the change but with top prestige teams being unable to sign 7-12 of the top players in a single class, there should naturally be a wider distribution of top recruits.

With the sim AIs holding back a certain amount of cash for future recruiting, they will be spending less money up front. Won't this make the players considering a sim school easier to take away from them? This seems to contradict the effort to have the sims recruit better players. (Weena - Hall of Famer - 1:22 PM)

The amount of money they spend on their primary recruits will not change but the amount of money they spend on their backup targets at the outset of recruiting will decrease.

I could see coaches trying to get around the 6 per class rule by trying to redshirt SO's or JR's. While this is difficult to do without a WE decrease, it is possible. Can you take this opportunity to close the loophole that allows coaches to apply, then unapply, then apply, etc. redshirts...hoping eventually the player will accept it without a WE decline? Either a WE decline happens EVERY TIME, or it doesn't. (wilhitec - Hall of Famer - 1:25 PM)

We don't plan on changing how players respond to being asked to redshirt - the way it works today is that if a player is asked to redshirt and responds negatively his work ethic will drop and the more you ask, the more likely he's not only going to say no, but incur an even more significant work ethic drop. So it's possible for a player to change his mind but it's unlikely.

Are you concerned about some coaches developing a "superclass junior" team with 6 Sr's and 6 Jr's? (spit_ballerz - Hall of Famer - 1:28 PM)

We've thought about this possibility but have we've held off instituting a 2 year class limitation (e.g. the NCAA was limiting schools to 5 in any given class and 8 over 2 seasons). We think that the other changes may address this possibility without have a 2 year size limitation but we're going to wait and see.

Instead of limiting class sizes, did you ever consider reducing the worth a superclasses' success? For example, a superclass team that wins the NT wouldn't nececarily have first crack at jumping up to an elite school, like, for example, to pick a team out of the blue.....uh....Kentucky. (nfet - Hall of Famer - 1:29 PM)

We considered many options but we did not consider reducing the value of winning with a superclass - many of these programs aren't looking to move up but are contending for a National Championship every 3-4 seasons.

I have many times been thrown over 6 open scholarships due to multiple players leaving for the NBA early. On one of my teams I have consistantly lost multiple players to the NBA (I lost 3 players a year in 4 out of 7 years). Losing so many players to the NBA makes it absolutely impossible to keep classes even. Any chance that the probability of losing multiple players to the NBA early is decreased? (cyoung187 - Hall of Famer - 1:34 PM)

We are not planning on making any changes to which/how players decide to leave early for the NBA. That said, we do realize that players leaving early for the NBA may leave more than 6 scholarships open for a coach but we have not yet decided, what, if anything, will be done to accomodate those situations.

When will these changes take effect? (jbohrman - Hall of Famer - 1:35 PM)

We're in a code lockdown through next week due to the schedule site maintenance so I would anticipate sometime during the week of July 21st.

Is there another phase of recruiting changes on the horizon? What other game changes can we look forward to over the next few months? (Weena - Hall of Famer - 1:38 PM)

Not at this time. There are certain issues that we have on the board that may or not be introduced based on watching recruiting over the next couple of seasons with these changes implemented. The next major enhancement on the horizon is the addition of potential and the addition of scouting services. These will go hand in hand as the scouting services will provide insight into a player's potential. I'm anticipating an August developer chat to discuss both.

So these changes will not affect Wooden recruiting that begins July 17? (jetsons - Hall of Famer - 1:39 PM)

No, there will be an announcement made once a final implementation date has been set but it will not be until at least the week of July 21st.

I like the fact that AI schools will not be as terrible if these changes are effective, but are DII applicants finding it easier to get a job in a conference with a lot of AI teams? In other words, is HD trying to balance conferences? (jetsons - Hall of Famer - 1:47 PM)

It certainly is easier to move into a poor DI program (whether the ex-coach was human or AI) and our intent is to not make it harder to get into DI - even with an upgrade in talent AI schools, I don't anticipate a major change in their success, but I do anticipate entry-level DI jobs becoming more appealing.

Obviously these changes can have cascading effects in other areas of the game. Rather than subjecting coaches to the laws of unintended consequences, can you place a moratorium on firings for at least 4 seasons while we get use to these changes? (mrsibob - All-Star - 1:50 PM)

The class size limitation will primarily impact DII and DIII coaches (only 2% of all human-run DI teams have more than 7 in a single class) as will the AI schools going after undecided recruits. Given that only DI coaches can be fired, we are not planning on stopping firings.

Will we be able to have more then 6 FR consider us at the same time? Will the Sim randomly pick which 6 get signed if we have more then that considering us only at the signing period? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 1:52 PM)

Sure, there is no limit to how many recruits can consider a school. As is the case today, if it matters to you which kids sign, scholarships should only be offered to those kids first as once the scholarship is offered, it's really up to the recruit as to when he will sign.

JUCO's are going to be a real hot commodity over the next couple seasons, will there be a temporary adjustment to the amount of JUCO players generated? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 1:54 PM)

Yes, there will be more JUCO recruits generated.

If I sign 6 FR and leave 2 scholarships open, will I be able to sign the 2 walk ons I am given? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 1:56 PM)

No, the class size limitation will prevent that.

What percentage of schools in HD have more then 6 players in one class? How does that compare to RL? (porkpower - Hall of Famer - 1:59 PM)

The percentage is smaller in DI - about 6% and greater in DII/DIII at about 11%. I don't know what the overall NCAA average but the rosters that we spot checked, we didn't see any with more than 6 scholarship players in the same class.

This question is not about the update, but what are the major factors in generating a recruits interest? How many recruiting points are given for a phone call? for a visit? etc? (artie40 - Hall of Famer - 2:01 PM)

Please reference the player's guide section on recruiting tips.

Is there going to be to stop ineligibles/redshirts from making classes oversized? Also if a team recruits an ineligible will they be more likely to go JuCo and lose a year of NCAA eligibility so the class is uneven... because teams could lose out on good players do to the cap rule (redsoxrootr1 - All-Star - 12:00 PM)

If you were to sign an ineligible player in season 10 and he decides to attend your school but sit out a year, he'll still be part of the freshman class so his class could be no larger than 6. When his 5 classmates graduate at the end of season 13, he could come back for season 14 as a 5th year senior but that will not count against the Senior class limit of 6.

As always, thanks for taking the time to post your questions!

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