In the fiercely competitive realm of collegiate recruitment, aspiring student-athletes often find themselves getting lost in the crowd and going to new, strategic lengths to really play the game.
With coaches receiving an increasing number of athlete inquiries, emails, phone calls, and applications year-to-year, it’s equally hard for coaches to identify top talent. So making yourself, your skills, and your work ethic really, really easy to identify can help maximize your chances of getting noticed – and here’s how.
Create Your Athlete Profile in Six Steps
This is the most important step in the process. First, create your free online profile with NCSA to be accessible on the database. Then you’ll need to follow through:
- Activate Your Profile: To officially activate your profile, a 5-10 minute phone-based interview with a recruiting coordinator to assess your profile is required. The interview will walk through your academic profile, connections to teams or coaches, where you fall in the process, and what your goals are.
- Be Searchable: Your profile needs to be “searchable,” – which we think of as the SEO. The more searchable your profile, the higher up it will appear in the results list when coaches are doing initial searches.
- Include Your Contact Information: Make it easy for coaches to reach out to you with your email address and phone number. Timely communication with coaches can be a game-changer in your recruitment process.
- Use Keywords and Tags: Coaches often use keywords or tags to search for potential recruits on recruiting platforms. Include relevant terms like your sport, position, graduation year, and school. The more specific and accurate your tags, the easier it is for coaches to find you.
- Stay Active and Engaged: Regularly update your online profiles with your latest achievements and activities. Share your progress, performance highlights, and any milestones you reach. Engage with coaches and sports communities through comments, shares, and direct messages, ensuring that your enthusiasm and commitment shine through.
- Professional Presentation: Maintain professionalism in all your online interactions and ensure that your profiles project you as a dedicated, disciplined, and respectful student-athlete. Coaches look for not only talent but also character and conduct.
Take a Personalized Approach
Coaches appreciate athletes who demonstrate genuine interest in their programs. When contacting coaches, avoid being generic by crafting personalized emails highlighting why you’re interested in their school, team, and overall coaching program. Mention specific details about their program and how you can contribute to the big-picture goals of the team. Building a personal connection with a coach can set you apart from other recruits. Be respectful, professional, and prompt in your correspondence.
Highlight Your Academic Excellence
While athletic prowess and sportsmanship are crucial, collegiate coaches value well-rounded athletes with a strong academic performance history. Maintaining a high GPA and scoring well on standardized tests like the SAT or ACT is crucial and can make or break your chances. Coaches often seek recruits who excel not only on the field but also in the classroom. Take advanced courses, demonstrate a commitment to your education, and don’t be shy about boasting about a few of your academic achievements regularly.
Produce High-Quality Video Highlights
Coaches receive an overwhelming number of highlight reels, so your video needs to really WOW. Invest in producing high-quality, professionally edited video highlights to showcase your skills, technique, and game-time intelligence. Clearly label your videos with essential information like your name, position, graduation year, GPA, and contact details.
Share your video highlights through your recruiting profiles, email, and social media, and be sure to follow up on all comments or leads on those platforms. Go all-out by grabbing full-game footage to create shorter, attention-grabbing clips that showcase your best plays.
Attend Regular Showcases and Camps
Showcases and camps provide invaluable opportunities to display your skills in front of coaches. Attend any and all events possible that attract coaches from schools you’re interested in.
These showcases allow you to interact with coaches directly, receive real-time feedback, and develop relationships on the spot. Before attending, reach out to the coaches who will be present, express your interest, and let them know where you’ll be and when – really invest in the process.
Be Consistent and Persistent
Collegiate recruitment requires persistence and consistency. Regularly update your profiles, contact coaches, and actively engage in opportunities to show off your skills a little.
A strategic approach that combines visibility, academic excellence, personalized communication, and a strong online presence can significantly increase your chances of getting noticed by coaches. Remember, it’s about more than just securing a spot on a team; it’s also about finding the right fit for your academic and athletic aspirations. Stay committed to your goals, stay proactive, and your efforts will pay off.
Seek Guidance from an Expert
Navigating collegiate recruitment can be complex. Consider working with a recruiting expert or a recruiting agency to maximize your potential. StellaPop Sports Marketing Experts can provide guidance on crafting a compelling recruiting profile, making effective contact with coaches, and choosing the right schools for your athletic and academic aspirations.
Call us – we’re experts in watching dreams come true.