Archive | August, 2015

Do you want to play college soccer?

26 Aug

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Top five mistakes student-athletes make in the recruiting process

14 Aug

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Top five mistakes student-athletes make in the college recruiting process

The college recruiting process can be overwhelming.  There are ID camps, showcases, highlight videos, player profiles, and the never ending stress of academics.  Unfortunately there are a number of places where the recruiting process can go sideways whether you are contacting coaches, visiting campuses, interviewing with admissions, or evaluating offers…  Here are five mistakes to avoid as you brave the college recruiting waters.

  1.  Assuming college coaches will find you

The classic recruiting myth goes something like this. You’re playing under the lights in the big game. College coaches sit in the stands, anxiously awaiting your performance on the pitch. You score a hat trick, leading the team to the championship. The coach of your dream school finds you after the game, shakes your hand, and offers you an athletic scholarship! Ah yes, wouldn’t it be nice if it were this easy? The truth is that for most kids, receiving an offer to play in college takes work! If you are sitting back hoping coaches will find you…you will most likely end up missing the boat. In order to have success in recruiting, you have to be proactive and find ways to make coaches take notice!

  1. Relying on somebody else

“My club coach will get me recruited.” “I signed up for an online recruiting service so I’m all set.” If this sounds like you and you are relying on others to “get you recruited” you may end up lost in the shuffle. Coaches, team managers, online services may be helpful, but nobody will take your recruiting process more seriously than you. You have to be the one to drive the train.   My goal as a recruiting mentor is to empower student-athletes to take charge in the process. This means developing a well thought out list of schools, and being organized in your efforts to connect with college programs. Don’t rely on others to do it for you, make it happen for yourself.

  1. Poor communication skills

Good communication skills are essential in the recruiting process. Failing to respond to a coach is a big “no-no.” It’s also vital that your messages to coaches are thoughtful, reflecting you in a positive light. Every email, phone call or text is a “touch point” which can make or break the recruiting conversation.

  1. Not making the grade

Poor grades and test scores can kill the recruiting conversation before it starts. If a coach is worried you won’t be able to handle the academics at their school, or won’t qualify with the NCAA, they may move on to the next prospect. Having a well conceived high school course plan and doing well in your classes is essential. Planning months ahead of time for the SAT/ACT is also important. Remember, the better your grades and test scores, the more likely college coaches will take an interest.

  1. Failing to stick with it

The process of landing a spot with a college team takes hard work over a long period of time. Some kids never even begin the process, assuming that coaches will find them. Many others give up on the process early on. They might write one email to a coach, but when they don’t get a response, assume the school isn’t interested and give up. It can take multiple attempts to connect and sometimes being a little creative to attract the attention of a college coach. The recruiting process is a marathon, not a sprint. You must be in it for the long haul in order to have success.

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Whether you are a freshman just starting out, or an upperclassmen hoping that some options open up, I’d love to help you avoid these mistakes. I work with families as a college advisor, helping student-athletes navigate the academic and athletic pieces of the puzzle. I’m not a recruiting service. I’m a mentor whose passion is to understand your specific interests and goals and help you find an amazing college fit.  Don’t get lost in the process!