When Wesleyan College was trying to close on a high school recruit, Mike Whalen — the school’s coach from 2010 to 2014 — turned to his friend Bill Belichick, as noted by our friends at For The Win.
But the player wasn’t buying.
The anecdote is contained in a fabulous oral history of the New England Patriots coach on ESPN.
“My first year as coach at Wesleyan I’m trying to turn things around and I’m recruiting a kid out of West Hartford who was leaning toward Princeton. So I emailed Bill and asked him to call the kid. Bill calls him that same night and the kid hangs up on him. ‘Hello, this is Bill Belichick from the New England Patriots,’ and the kid goes, ‘Yeah, right.’ Bill keeps going: ‘I’d like to talk to you about Wesleyan and the kind of opportunity you’ll have there,’ and the kid goes, ‘Yeah, yeah, sure, Bill’ — click. Bill emails me and says, ‘I reached out to him but, um, I don’t think I really connected.’”
No word if the recruit ended up going to Wesleyan.
Whoever he was, Wesleyan did pretty well under Whalen, who returned to his alma mater to turn the program around. After 4-4 and 3-5 seasons in his first two years, his teams finished 5-3, 7-1 and 7-1.