The recruiting process is constantly changing. The methods and rules are forever evolving, which makes it difficult to keep up with what you can and can’t do. It is important for high school athletes who are looking to get recruited to play college sports to stay on top of important information that can affect their ability to get recruited.
The one thing that will always remain a crucial part of the recruiting process is the importance of contacting college coaches. Unless you are in the top 1% of high school athletes who are in the elite levels for recruitment, chance are you will need to make that initial contact. There are too many high school athletes out there who assume that they are good enough in their sport that they will be found and followed by college coaches from all over the country. Or they think that their high school or club coach will do the work for them. This is almost never the case, and far too often these athletes are learning their mistakes late.
College coaches often times do not have the time, staff, or budget to search and follow all of the recruits that they could be interested in. That is why high school athletes should get in the habit of making the contact with coaches first. If you wait around for college coaches to find you, great opportunities to compete in college could pass you by.
Before you start contacting a hundred different schools, you need to do your research first. Make sure you know what you are looking for in a school to help you narrow down the list of possibilities. Think about things like location, climate, your major of study, size of school, and the academic requirements. Also, you should talk to your high school or club coach about what division level they feel you might do well in. The best way to get the most responses from coaches is to know and understand the division levels and where you would play best at. It’s always great to aim high but if you only contact the top DI schools, don’t expect many positive responses.
Once you have developed a list of schools, you will need to compile a sports resume and highlight video. These are essential to presenting yourself to the coach in best way possible; after all, first impressions are everything. By sending the information to them directly, you are saving them a lot of time and effort in having to ask you for it or go searching for it. Make sure when you also include a personalized letter to each coach you contact; nothing turns off a college coach more than an impersonal mass email sent to hundreds of schools.
When you are ready to start contacting the schools on your list, you will need to find the email addresses of the coaches at those programs. You can find this information on many of the athletic departments’ staff pages on their websites. Once you have established contact with them, it is equally as important to follow-up with them and keep them updated on your progress. Building this relationship with possible college coaches can make or break your recruiting success.