Three Things to Avoid in Recruiting: Ways to Get Blacklisted by College Coaches
By Laura Chmiel, NCSA
I prefer to keep things positive: reminding you of ways to take charge of your recruiting process, offering parents tips on how to best support their student-athlete, helping you decide why to attend events. But I’ve been noticing a couple things we want to bring to your attention.
Three things, actually.
As you execute the ways you can leave a positive, lasting impression on a college coaching staff -potentially your future coaches–and begin to take a crack at the many “do‘s” of getting recruited, I thought I’d break down the “don’ts” in a simple top three: 3 Easy Ways to Get Crossed Off a Recruiting List.
So. Here we go. Things to avoid in recruiting:
A bad recommendation from your high school coach
Think of the amount of time you spend with your high school team.
This isn’t just time on the practice field or during a game. This is time in the weight room, the film room, on the bus, around the locker room.
In any given stretch of the year, you spend more time with your high school coach than with your family. They see how you study, how you communicate with others, how you dress, what your table manners are. If there is anything coming in the way of a positive, productive relationship with your high school coach at this time, fix it. Call them today or set up a meeting for tomorrow.
No matter what the issue(s) you or your parents may have with your high school coach, their recommendation could make or break your future.
Inappropriate, insensitive, or vulgar social media posts
Ladies and gentleman: Isn’t this a no brainer by now?
There is absolutely nothing to gain from posting the wrong kinds of material on your social media feeds. If there is a shadow of a doubt that what you say could be offensive to anyone, or even misinterpreted by anyone, it’s not worth posting.
Who is in the picture you are posting and what are you doing? Coaches nowadays head straight to your social media accounts to gain knowledge about your character and the way you choose to represent yourself.
Like it or not, this is a fact. If you’re worried about any of your social media accounts, deactivate them or clean them up immediately. If you are a prospective recruit, colleges are already monitoring your tweets and Instagram pics. Don’t let this be the reason you don’t get offered a scholarship.
Uneasy first impression – via phone, email, or on a visit
No matter how you contact a coach, you need to put your best foot forward.
When emailing a coach for the first time, use spell check, and ask at least one other person to review what you wrote before sending.
When calling a coach for the first time, do so from a quiet place where you can take notes on what they tell you. Have notes in front of you with questions, personal stats, or talking points should you need them. When meeting a coaching staff for the first time, look your best.
When visiting a program, err on the side of caution. Tone it down and keep it classy. Caring about how you sound and the look you present to a coaching staff isn’t dorky. It’s respectful. And it’s taking your future seriously. Make your coaches, teammates, teachers, and family members proud of the person they will soon send out into the world as an adult.
Still have questions about things to avoid in recruiting? I promise our scouts aren’t nearly as doom and gloom as I am — they’re actually nice! One of them gave me a piece of chocolate. Just think of how helpful they’ll be about how you can get the most out of your journey to college.