Here come the letters from coaches
So you got your first letter from a coach. You have worked so hard for the moment when coaches would begin to recruit you. Nobody is around but your family, so you all do a happy dance. With nervous and excited hands you tear open the letter and read every word.
Your read it again, this time a bit slower. Something is missing. You are not quite sure what. You scan it over a third time and then you begin to realize it is not very personal. You begin to wonder, does this coach even know who your are? Is this real?
Yes, the letter is real. However, you are not a “Recruit”. You are a “Prospect”.
When college coaches are looking at high school student athletes what are they seeing?
There are two types of players that are on the radar screen for college coaches: Recruits and Prospects.
What is a “Recruit”?
The players in the center of the coach’s radar screen are called “Recruits.” These are the players that a coach is interested in. What makes a “Recruit?” How do you know you are a recruit?
If the coach has expressed interest in you, you are a recruit. Here are some clear indications that a coach is interested in you:
- The coach or assistant coach has contacted you.
- They have invited you for a campus visit.
- They have encouraged you to take the necessary steps to be admitted and play on their team.
- Apply to the school
- Send in your ACT/SAT scores
- Send in your transcripts
- Register with either the NCAA or NAIA eligibility center (except for NCAA Division 3, no eligibility center is required).
If it doesn’t appear you are a Recruit, what are you?
What kind of player is on the edge of the radar screen?
The term for these students is “Prospect.” A prospect is a living, breathing student that competes in athletics. All high school students are considered prospects. Coaches obtain names from showcase events, high schools, recruiting websites, their admissions department, and various other methods.
Coaches will often send out hundreds or even thousands of emails out to “Prospects.” The material sent out will ask you for an action step such as filling out a questionnaire. Coaches are fishing for a select few athletes that have these three things in common:
- May be interested in their school
- May add value to their program
- The coach has not seen them play
Is there hope?
It is great to be a “Recruit,” but what about if you are a “Prospect?” Is there hope?
Sure there is. The coach is fishing for players that have been overlooked. I would encourage you to fill out the questionnaire and send the coach a personal email. There is no guarantee the coach will move you to the status of “Recruit.” But there is a high probability that they will take a look at you, just because you have taken the time to express interest.
Whether you are being recruited or are a prospect, my best advice is to be Proactive! Opportunities come to those who reach out and grab them!
If you fall into the “Prospect” category or have only had one or two coaches consider you a “Recruit”, it is time to encourage coaches to move you over to being a “Recruit”.
How to Get Recruited: Got Talent. Get a Plan. Get Recruited.
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