Take it from the pros who know recruiting from top to bottom
When you think about it, no one knows more about the recruiting process — and what coaches are looking for — than coaches themselves. So it makes sense that they’re the ones with some good advice that might help in your own recruiting. And if you’re unsure about where you stand with your recruiting, or you’re just looking for some advice, take a few minutes to read over these tips from the recruiting pros:
Stay Positive and Be Flexible
Everyone has their own vision about how their recruiting process will go, but things don’t always go as planned. If, for whatever reason, your recruiting isn’t going as you envisioned, don’t worry and keep a positive attitude. If your dream school isn’t calling, be flexible in your choices and requirements, do more research, ask more questions, and find more schools on your list that still check all your boxes.
Focus On The Fit
During your recruiting process, you may get one, two, or several offers from schools of all sizes and all divisions. While the glamour and excitement of an offer from a big-name school may be tempting, most coaches suggest that you’re better served focusing on the best, long-term fit for you instead of the best current offer. Take the time to build relationships with coaches and focus on your development as both an athlete and as a recruit. Once you have a better understanding of what you’re looking for, you’ll be able to make the right choice about the offer that best suits you.
Thanks to the pandemic, budget cuts, the transfer portal, and NILs, college athletic recruiting has changed drastically in the last several years. Coaches may need extra time to see how their roster will look next season before they can decide who they want to recruit. Every coach, every program, and every process is different. Be patient and don’t worry if you’re not being hotly recruited the moment you’re eligible.
College coaches on the recruiting trail don’t have time for games or athletes playing hard to get. Be clear and honest in your communication with coaches. Be upfront about your own timelines (even if you’re not certain) and don’t be shy about asking questions (as long as they’re not questions you could answer on your own). Don’t be shy about being proactive in scheduling times to visit with coaches, for initial introductions, or to share updates.
Be Tenacious and Consistent
Coaches have plenty on their plates. If you don’t get a response to an initial inquiry, don’t be discouraged, and don’t be shy about making a second or even third attempt to contact a coach. Once you do connect with a coach, follow through and continue to follow up. And make sure your highlight video will get you noticed since that could open more doors for you along with consistent emails and phone calls.
Demonstrate Your Drive
Simply posting a recruiting video, highlight video, and saying “Here I am!” doesn’t cut it. Coaches want to see hustle, competitiveness, and drive in a recruit. You can show that in your video and in your visits with coaches. But you can also show that by updating your recruiting profile and highlight video as you grow and improve. You can show that in your tenacity in contacting coaches. If you don’t have new highlights or stats, include some workout videos to demonstrate how you’re working to improve your skills and strength. Show that you’ve got the drive to excel, whether you’re in the weight room or in the championship. Your talent, skill, and athleticism can get coaches interested in you, but your drive and willingness to work hard is what earns scholarships.
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