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Evolution of Signing Day

Feb. 10, 2017

February 10, 2017 –

While every sport has a signing day, none compares to National Signing Day for football.

February 1st I witnessed my first National Signing Day football coverage and I was in awe. The evolution of signing day over the last decade is remarkable.

RECAP the next generation of Notre Dame Football LEGENDS.

Check out National Signing Day in 2 minutes.#IRISHEL17E

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) February 1, 2017

When I was in high school, roughly five years ago, I don’t recall signing day being such a big deal. I remember seeing everyone’s picture in the paper with a biography on their accomplishments in high school.

Fast forward to 2017, almost every university has a live broadcast announcing each signee, like a miniature draft. Not only have the universities stepped up their game, but the student-athletes have also moved on from just posting a picture on Myspace (the popular social site when I was in high school) but now they want to have a ceremony at school in front of their closest friends and family.

Props to Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah for best possible interruption to a press conference…

(and yes, Coach ordered ?)#SCTop10 #IRISHEL17E

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) February 1, 2017

Video of Jeremiah Owusu announcing his commitment to Notre Dame

— Kate Yanchulis (@KYanchulis) February 1, 2017

Now of course the average teenager and even adults would rather watch a signing day show then read a 500-word article on a recruit, so it’s no surprise how NSD has evolved over the years. As I sat behind the scenes of Notre Dame Football’s National Signing Day Show, I thought about what it takes to appeal to audiences now and we can thank FaceTime, Twitter, Periscope, Snapchat, Facebook Live and Instagram for the instantaneous breaking of news on multiple platforms with different demographics.


Watch as @RealAveryDavis (QB from Texas) hits up our coaches on the ? after signing his NLI.#IRISHEL17E

— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) February 2, 2017

On top of putting the show together, there was lot of emphasis put on social media content with graphics, Gifs and short recap videos to adhere to the signees and fan base that wasn’t watching the entire 7-hour show.

“One of my favorite guys I’ve recruited.” – Mike Elston

Kurt Hinish, ready for the @NDFootball D-Line.

Follow on

— The Fighting Irish (@FightingIrish) February 1, 2017

Overall, as a sports fanatic I’m thrilled to be able to witness how signing day has literally become a national holiday.

I spoke with Emmy Award Winning Sports Broadcaster, Jack Nolan, who was one of the hosts on signing day and he also gave his perspective about signing day over the years.

Tamara Brown, the Notre Dame Sports Blogger, has been part of Fighting Irish Media since August 2016 and provides exclusive, behind-the-scenes coverage of all 26 varsity sports. A native of Newport News, Virginia, Brown graduated from Virginia Tech in 2015 with a degree in Multimedia Journalism. For more follow the @NDSportsBlogger on Twitter.