In the 80's the local newspapers would run weekly recruiting articles with fairly in depth info about recruits we were after. Much better than anything they do today.
I really got hooked on recruiting by Jeff Whittaker's Deep South Recruiting Guide in the 90's. It was a seasonal mag that focused primarily on the south east, and had full bio's of every blue chip recruit with color photos and a 10.0 rating system. I would start looking for them at local convenience stores early every summer and sift through all the info. Fortunately we were recruiting like gang busters at the time, and it made for an exciting signing day when very few people really followed it.
I remember the commitments of players like Andy Kelly (as a punter), Carl Pickens, Heath Shuler, Little Man and Hayden, Garner, Dale Carter, etc. Brandon Stewart and Peyton Manning and the debate about which would turn out to be the better QB. The fiasco surrounding Randy Moss's recruitment, when he was dropped by Florida State and courted by UT for a while, only to be turned away to Marshall because of off the field issues. Those were exciting times to be a Vols fan.
Anyone remember "Black Monday"? When we had like 10 blue chips leaning to us the monday before signing day, and only one of them ended up signing with us. That one guy was Billy Ratliff, maybe the most important part of the national championship team that followed a few years later.