To the casual basketball fan, the gap between perception and reality for college basketball assistants might be exactly as Sports Illustrated's Bruce Schoenfeld describes it.
Too Many Phone Calls. Endless Road Trips. No Sleep. The - 05.16.11 - SI Vault
During games, assistants decorate the bench in suits and ties, reminding a post player to move his feet or a guard to rotate the ball. When the horn sounds, their real jobs begin. NCAA Division I schools are allowed three assistants, and the four coaches have a combined 130 recruiting days during the high school season. Then come summer tournaments. "You pretty much lose the month of July," says Kansas's Joe Dooley. "And quite a bit of September, because of the in-home visits."
Schoenfeld's primary example was Washington Huskies assistant Raphael Chillious, who has been on staff since April 2009.
Through Chillious and other assistants he comes into contact with, the article paints a portrait of recruiting almost as an art form - figuring out when to stop pursuing a player, maximizing a 30 second interaction with a player, or figuring out how to legally get back to a player's father after a missed phone call.
Overall it's a pretty interesting look at a critical element of college basketball success that we can't necessarily glean just from watching these suits sit on the bench holding portfolios.