As we get closer and closer to National Letter of Intent signing day there are many high school senior athletes who have yet to make a decision on their future plans. Unfortunately there will be some great players that signing day will pass by for a plethora of reasons. Make no mistake about it, college sports while having some of the best athletes in the world has historically looked over potential pro talent. In many cases some of these misses have found their ways into prep schools and/or junior colleges eventually ending up on a division one roster. Now comes the Pacific Pro Football league which will basically be a sizable fishing net that will catch some of those misses and unsigned seniors. The first season of the league is projected to begin in the summer of 2018 which would mean that it’s first selection of players would be the winter of 2017 or early spring of 2018. The brass tax of it all is that this league will pay its players and as any former or present college football player will tell you, being paid to play the sport you love is a major plus. Why will the PAC Pro League succeed? Simple. It has a former coaching mastermind in Mike Shanahan and a former super bowl champion in Ed McCaffrey as the main advisors to league owners. McCaffrey is actually one of the founders and with his knowledge of the components of a winning franchise and Shanahan’s experience with the NFL, things are sure to go in the right direction. And this of course is not to downplay the other executives involved. Donald Yee is known as an aggressive and successful businessman and this will definitely be one of his greatest business moves.
Currently there are four teams involved with the PAC Pro League but rest assured there will be expansion and with the hype meter heading off the charts, big corporations are readying their checkbooks to get in on this venture. Compensation packages will include but are not limited to an annual player salary of $50,000, one year of paid community college, and academic/vocational counseling. A pretty good deal considering most guys would be willing to play for free as long as they have a division one uniform on their back. Meanwhile there are thousands of high school football players especially those in the class of 2018 and on thinking that this is the opportunity of a lifetime. Now it must be said that the league is mainly for players who are college age but that in no way means that a high school football player at the least shouldn’t bask in the hopes of a paid alternative and thus “have an ice cream cone and skip through the park” sort of feeling at this new opportunity.
Should the NCAA be worried about the PAC Pro League taking some of its better athletes? At the moment that would be a big no. The NCAA is a billion dollar industry and has pipelines for talent that reach around the world. But that is not to say that they won’t be looking over their shoulders and paying attention to the PAC Pro League’s progression. Figure this a classic situation of Nike versus Under Armour. When Under Armour first began all they wanted to do is get into the same room as Nike, Adidas, and Reebok and now they have one of the biggest names in athletic apparel. This may or may not happen with PAC Pro Football but at it’s roots there is definitely an argument that this will be the next powerhouse league. Stay tuned.