To get coaches to watch your video and evaluate you as a recruit, you need to be proactive.
Recruiting isn’t fair. Some recruits have no problem getting attention from college coaches and receiving multiple offers, while you feel like you can’t get even one.
While elite athletes seem to get recruited without lifting a finger, the vast majority of families have to roll up their sleeves and put in long hours to get on a coach’s radar. To understand what you need to do to get recruited, it can be helpful to compare your recruiting journey to the experience of an elite recruit. Here are four of the biggest differences.
YOU WON’T GET DOZENS OF SCHOLARSHIP OFFERS
Five-star recruits are up to their ears in scholarship offers. Since these athletes are covered closely by national media and have large social media followings, college programs will make as many as 430 scholarship offers a year to get free publicity. Even if a coach’s chance of landing a blue chip recruit is a longshot, making an offer can generate media buzz and help attract other recruits.
However, the average recruit will probably be choosing between two to three serious offers. And that’s OK. Having lots of choices is nice, but what really matters is finding the right athletic and academic fit.
Keep in mind — a lot can happen between receiving scholarship offers and picking up the pen on National Signing Day. Even recruits who get 100 offers or more are only really considering five to 10 frontrunners. And all recruits should really focus on this magic number.
YOU TAKE A LITTLE LONGER TO PHYSICALLY DEVELOP
Nearly all elite prospects are taller, bigger, stronger and faster than their peers. Their early development is what helped them stand out and get noticed by scouts at a young age. But this doesn’t mean college coaches aren’t looking for late bloomers.
Studies show that athletes who develop late can succeed at the highest level once their bodies catch up. As you grow into your body and start to hit your stride, regularly update your highlight video to show coaches your progression. And remember that for 95 percent of recruits, character and grades are just as important as athletic ability.
YOUR YOUTUBE HIGHLIGHTS WON’T GO VIRAL
For every YouTube discovery, there are 100 recruits found at college camps and in recruiting databases. While you should make sure to have a recent highlight video posted online, you can’t afford to sit back and wait for coaches to find it. Unless you’re pulling off insane dunks or diving grabs in the back of the end zone, your video probably won’t get much traction on its own.
To get coaches to watch your video and evaluate you as a recruit, you need to be proactive. Email coaches when you refresh your video with new footage and sign up to attend college camps and showcases hosted by schools on your target list.
YOU’LL MOSTLY GET PARTIAL SCHOLARSHIP OFFERS
NCAA headcount sports — Division I football, basketball, women’s volleyball, women’s tennis and women’s gymnastics — always offer full-ride scholarships. However, all other college sports are equivalency sports, which means the coach has a limited amount of scholarship money to give athletes on their roster.
While receiving a 25 percent partial scholarship isn’t quite as tweetable as a full ride, many athletes combine athletic scholarships with financial aid to cover college expenses. Keep in mind that any offer is a great offer and many college athletes don’t get any athletic scholarship money.