When talking about the athletic recruiting process for all sports, there is no doubt in my mind that highlight and game videos are a very essential part to getting that elusive scholarship. If college coaches feel you may be scholarship worthy, they will nitpick every second of these videos. And even if you do all that you can to just show your highlights or only send certain full game tape, the video does not lie.
I recently had a chance to see a recruiting letter that was sent by a Division I college that requested video. Even though this was not a major school, the line that stuck out to me is simply that video does not lie. What did they mean by this? They meant that if they get their hands on your video and have a chance to take a look at it, they can tell rather quickly if you can play at their level or not. With athletic highlights, there are no smoke and mirrors that can turn a Division III player to a Division I scholarship athlete.
I recently received an outstanding question via email asking about what happens with recruiting in a coaching change. Just to give you a little background, the athlete received an offer before the end of the college season. Fast forward two weeks and the school that had offered the scholarship was firing their head coach.
Now the athlete wants to know exactly if there is still a scholarship on the table. Like I told him, it really depends on a case by case situation. I have seen situations where all athletes are still wanted at the school and others where the new coaches take all the offers off the table and start the evaluation process completely from scratch at the new school.
One subject that I continue to harp upon what seems day after day is how parents, athletes, and families have to be realistic in the athletic recruiting process. An athlete may have spent their entire life dreaming of receiving a Division I scholarship offer but there has to be a point where you realize that is not going to happen. It is not easy to deal with but it happens.
I have seen first hand for a football and a basketball player who spent their life dreaming of a Division I offer. And as of now, neither of these seniors athletes have any scholarships to speak of. Sometimes there just has to be a point where families become realistic and they are able to realize that the writing is on the wall for not garnering that scholarship offer out of high school.
We had another great comment on an article recently written about receiving early attention from the likes of Florida State, Colorado, Michigan State, Rutgers, and a number of other colleges. The question that was asked surrounding these is do they matter much? In my opinion, it is a very good thing to get these questionnaires from schools like that. While it doesn’t mean you will get a scholarship or anything along those lines, it does mean that you are on their radar early (if you are a senior and have just been getting these, then chances are they have you classified in a different grade than you are really in).
I sound like a broken record but there is no doubt that getting on the radar of major Division I schools early in the process is something you should set as a goal. The person who made this comment, Mike, has done well so far in the recruiting process. But there are a number of steps and things that must be done throughout the rest of the recruiting process to be able to end up signing with a place like Florida State or Rutgers.
One of the more interesting phrases that I found from a comment on the board related to more information regarding a January Decision Recruit. Basically what this involves is a recruit who is not a top tier recruit but still a prospect would like to land in the recruiting process. But before they offer a January recruit, they are going to see what happens with their top rated recruits.
I have also called these January Recruits fallback recruits or option B/C in the recruiting process. College coaches have to keep these January recruits on the hook because you never know what will happen. It could be a decommitment or an academic casualty but there is no doubt in my mind that every coach uses these just in case.
I am a senior in the football recruiting process without any offers but I have interest. What should I be doing now in December (Part Two)?
If you have the time, it is definitely worth it to take these official visits. The colleges will reimburse you with a check according to the mileage that you drove to get there. They will host you during the weekend (likely at a hotel) and handle basically all of your meals while you are there. It may cost a little extra if your parents come but bringing family members is something I strongly recommend.
Over the two and a half years that I have been running this site, I have had an opportunity to do question and answers with a number of outstanding families. I did these after they wrapped up the football recruiting process so that they could look back on what they saw and learned.
One of the questions that I always tried to ask was if they had advice for other families out there reading. In this article, I decided to take information that the parents provided for that answer and put it into one article. Again, these are real parents who went through the ups and downs of football recruiting over the last few years. Find out what they said.
I am a senior in the football recruiting process without any offers but I have interest. What should I be doing now in December (Part One)?
When looking back on the month of November, some of the most popular articles was time based advice for football recruits out there reading this. It varied from seniors with offers, seniors with out offers, and juniors with recruiting interest. And because Signing Day is getting closer every week, we thought we would continue this tradition and update the article for December.
When thinking about the overall month of December for football recruiting, it really is a strange month overall. The top Division I-A (BCS) schools have finished up their regular season and will be having bowl game preparation. The top Division I-AA (FCS) and II teams will be battling for a national title. Throw in the holiday break and it is definitely strange overall to get a good feel of the recruiting process.
A mother’s thoughts on the athletic recruiting process and how a season ending injury can factor into things
I had a chance to email back and fourth with a mom who has been through a lot during the recruiting process. Her son was a highly rated player in the Midwest and could have added multiple scholarship offers if not for an injury in his first game of his senior year. This is the a nightmare for any recruit who does not have any scholarship offers. Her son’s ACL was torn and his missed the majority of his senior year. But in the end, it worked out and he was able to stay in state at a strong program.
This gracious and helpful mom answered some of my questions about what her family went through. This is a very interesting take because this is the exact opposite of what anyone wants to happen during their final year of prep football. But as I mentioned, luckily for them, it all worked out in the end and her son will be paying very little for his college education. Here is this in-depth question and answer.
For junior recruits across the country, there is no doubt that taking the time and making the trip to Junior Days is worth it. These are held for football, basketball, baseball, and I am sure other sports as well. The basic definition of a recruiting Junior Day is where a college brings in a number of their sought after recruits in the current junior class.
Bringing these juniors allows the athletes to see the school, meet the coaches, get a tour of the facilities, and learn more about the program in general. Because it is still early in the recruiting process for these juniors, it is a good time to get to know some of the coaches and learn more about them and what their school has to offer.