Today is the day millions of college football fans have been waiting for since No. 1 Auburn knocked off No. 2 Oregon in the Bowl Championship Series (BCS) championship game in mid-January.
No, it is not the first day of summer practice. It even isn't the first day of spring drills.
Rather, today is the day when college football coaches learn what new recruits will be joining their programs - it is national letter-of-intent signing day.
West Virginia University head football coach Bill Stewart has slated a 3 p.m. press conference to release the Mountaineers' Class of 2011, but thanks to the Internet, the majority of that class will be common knowledge before the fourth-year head coach takes to the podium.
In fact several members of this class already enrolled for spring classes and are expected to be on the football field when drills begin in March.
Six members, including junior college transfer Joshua Francis, are on campus and have inked their names. The others include quarterbacks Brian Athey of Eden Prairie Senior High School (Eden Prairie, Minn.) and Paul Millard of Flower Mound High School (Flower Mound, Texas), wide receiver Dante Chambers of Miramar High School (Miramar, Fla.) and twins Vernard (a running back) and Vance (a cornerback) Roberts from Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C.
From there the list becomes as varied as the number of methods a person can utilize to solve a rubric cube.
To date 22 seniors made verbal commitments to become part of the Class of 2011, including Francis. That number could be one larger if running back Jermichael Selders of Cypress Creek High School (Houston, Texas) follows through with his original plan to become a member of the old gold and blue.
That number could also grow as Stewart and his staff will have several scholarships vacated by the departure of players during the past season.
NCAA Division 1 programs are permitted to distribute a maximum of 25 full scholarships per class and can have a maximum of 85 on the roster come the first day of summer drills.
That final number will grow depending on the number of invited walk-ons a coaching staff wishes to bring into the program and by those athletes looking to fulfill a dream be trying to make it on a D-I program.
Numbers can also be altered by the number of 'grey shirts' a program elects to use.
These athletes are asked to hold off their admission to a school until the spring semester of the following year. Some prospective recruits, especially those who may not clear the NCAA's Clearinghouse, may be asked to enroll in a prep school for a year or go the junior college route in order to become eligible.
Another factor that can potentially have an impact on WVU's Class of 2011 is the transition going on in the coaching staff itself.
Some recruits may find it hard to understand just how a coach-in-waiting will work. Those concerns can be minimized by Stewart and HCIW Dana Holgorsen, but you can bet it is a situation some other schools will use as a tool to convince a recruit not to come to Morgantown.
All that being said, however, the class appears to be a solid one. Maybe not as filled with the 'so-called' elite players every fan wants to see coming to their program, but one which appears to fill the needs Stewart and his staff singled out prior to starting the recruiting process following last year's Gator Bowl loss to Florida State.
Just how well will this class fare during its stay in Morgantown?
Only time will tell.
Contact Jim Butta at email@example.com