More than any other single event in the recruiting process, athletes and parents equate seeing scouts and coaches at your games as the sign that you are being seriously recruited. It is certainly true that if a school is going to send staff to come watch you play you are on their radar. What most recruits and families don’t know is that there is a lot you can do to make sure coaches are watching you compete.
Play Where College Coaches Are Already Watching Recruits
If you play sports like basketball, baseball, softball, volleyball or any sport with a large club or travel team component, make sure you are playing at the big events coaches attend. There are a couple huge events every year where the best travel teams in the country gather and accordingly, so do the college coaches. If your team is playing at these events and coaches know you are there, you stand a really good chance that they will watch at least some of your games.
Bonus Tip** Chances are if you are playing against a highly recruited player at a big tournament, several other coaches will be there. Go online, find out what schools are recruiting him or her and contact the coaches at that school showing your interest in their program.
Give Coaches a Sample of Your Ability Before Hand
Rarely do coaches not watch a player in person that they really want to. This means you need to do everything possible to get that coach to want to see more of you. If you only send an email to a coach, they can’t get a good sense of what kind of player you are. Having a really good highlight video online and sharing that link with coaches will give you the best chance of impressing the right coach. Every coach says a good highlight video leaves them wanting more and more means they are going to come and watch you play.
Take Advantage of Your Critical Opportunities When They Come
You have to understand, the majority of the games you play aren’t going to be watched by college coaches. The reality for most recruits is that there is going to be one or two events a year where you get the chance to get real exposure. This almost never comes at the high school level. Use this checklist to make sure you are prepared for the big events each year college coaches are going to be around.
- Make sure you are playing in the major tournaments and showcases for your sport each year.
- Email the coaches your highlight video and let them know your club team name, colors and schedule.
- Know when you are playing against other top recruits and contact the coaches at the schools you know or think might be recruiting them.
What Doesn’t Work For Getting Coaches to Your Games
Most recruits and families think their current coaches or high school AD’s are trying to get college coaches to the games. 99% of coaches aren’t doing this because it isn’t their job. They would like to help if they could, but they are very busy running the team.
Another common problem is athletes think if they are good enough, they get discovered. True, you can have one good game against the best competition and maybe get noticed. What happens if you are in that game and just play okay or worse play bad? You stand a way better chance of getting discovered if you let coaches know ahead of time who you are and that you are interested in their program. This gives coaches something more than just your single performance to decide whether or not to recruit you.