Feature Stories

Inside the unregulated world of recruiting consulting services

(Photo Illustration by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)
(Photo Illustration by Leonard Ortiz, Orange County Register/SCNG)

by Ryan Kartje

Overwhelmed and out of answers, Tim and Tanya Blomquist listened intently to the pitch. They’d been warned – about recruiting services, about the false dreams some sell, about scammed parents left high and dry.

Upon arriving at this coffee shop meeting last spring, both clung to their skepticism. But they also were driven to despair at the thought of their son’s college football dream deferred, and the man sitting across the table was a compelling salesman, with an answer to every question.

Greg Hoyd told them time was running out. Marketing their son Elijah, a reserve running back at Mater Dei High, to colleges this late would be “a big project,” he said – one he probably shouldn’t take on. Fortunately for them, he had a plan. His recruiting service, Playing for Envelopes, could hold their hand through the process. He sold them on his connections; every day, he spoke with dozens of coaches. He named a few at the Division I level who might be interested in their son. And when Elijah stopped by the meeting, Hoyd marveled that he’d be “an easy sell.”