How to Get Recruited Guide
contact coaches or miss opportunities

Contact Coaches or Miss Opportunities

Do you know that your teen will miss opportunities if they’re not calling coaches and meeting deadlines?

I’m anxious and stressed about the college application process…and I’ve been helping kids for over 20 years.

I know the anxiety and stress of the college selection process. We have four children. My oldest is a junior in college. Now we’re helping our son, a high school senior, navigate college deadlines.

After 20 years I’ve learned there are two major issues you’re probably facing:

  • First, the process is downright confusing.
  • Second, how do you motivate a teenager to get stuff done?

Honestly, motivating teens is tough. If you’re teen won’t get stuff done they’re going to miss out. This is what we’re struggling with in my house right now.

My son has done well in high school. His grades and test scores are fantastic. He’s personable. He wants to go to college and be successful both in college and in life.

As a family we’re all striving for the same goal: find a great college for him to attend.

And yet there is this divide between how his mother and I see the process of getting into college and how he views it. Here are some of the things we wrestle with. Do any of these feel familiar?

1. Turn things in early or you miss opportunities.

I believe he should have turned in his applications, essays, references, etc. yesterday. He believes tomorrow will work.

My son is going to attend a Scholar’s Day at two universities. These are special invitation events colleges host for students with good grades. To attend these events, students often have to write an extra essay and prepare for interviews with staff.

As parents, we tend to take this more seriously than an 18-year-old.

When I told my son I wanted everything turned in a week before the deadline he respectfully told me that was an “arbitrary” deadline. But on the day of the deadline, he still didn’t have everything complete and turned in. This is real life!

2. There are consequences for missing deadlines.

My wife and I panic that deadlines are going to be missed. He believes everything will work out fine, even if he misses the deadline.

This is very similar to the question of when we believe things should be submitted. This, however, hits at the very core of the issue. Eighteen-year-olds, especially boys, have a different risk tolerance than their parents. This is why their car insurance rates are so high.

As parents, we understand the ramifications of failure to meet deadlines. We have felt it in our own lives. I guess it comes from the experience of living longer and knowing everything doesn’t always work out.

I want nothing but success for my son. But I can’t succeed for him. He may have to learn to love his third or fourth-choice school.

3. Take initiative and ask so you don’t miss opportunities.

I believe my son should pick up the phone and speak with the admissions counselor. He believes the admission counselor will email or text him if they need something. Our son isn’t an athlete, but the same principle applies to athletes.

Are you asking, begging, and pleading with your teen to pick up the phone? Please take initiative. Call the counselor or coach.

The reality is most admissions counselors will continue to reach out and baby our babies through the process. The school has a vested financial interest in doing whatever it takes to get our child to attend their school. But a coach won’t baby your athlete.

4. If your teen isn’t calling coaches, you’re missing opportunities.

Coaches have an incredibly large pool of players to choose from. If your teen is not reaching out, responding, and setting themselves apart by their ability to interact with the coach, guess who will lose interest? The Coach.

Over my years of coaching, I saw more athletes miss opportunities for this one reason than any other.

The brutally honest truth is that there are consequences of inaction. Your teen will lose opportunities.

The loss is hard to measure because your teen won’t know which opportunities they missed. But be assured, the less they do to get in front of coaches, the more roster spots and scholarships will pass them by.

Sit down and talk to your teen. Remind them about deadlines and missed opportunities. But most of all tell them the truth: They need to be on the phone calling coaches. They need to be sending emails. And they need to do it all at the right time. Not “later.”

Athletes who do it later run the risk of missing out.

Have your teen get on the phone and call a coach. Today.


How to Get RecruitedThe “How to Get Recruited” guide: Everything you need to know to help your teen become a college athlete. Buy it here and get started today.