The USA TODAY High School Sports Recruiting Tips are provided by our recruiting partner, Playced.com
At Playced, the recruiting question we get asked most often is: “How do I get noticed by college coaches?” Obviously, if you are the best athlete in your district that will help, but short of that sending an effective email to the appropriate coaches followed by an email from your current coach is probably your best shot at getting noticed. An effective email has to be strategic just to be opened. Here are some tips that will help.
Be sure to email the right schools
For your emails to have a chance, you have to email coaches at programs that you can actually play for. Not only should you be able to play for that particular school, but you should also be sure that you are academically qualified for that school. One guarantee that you can count on when sending introductory emails to college coaches: if you can’t cut in the classroom or on the field, you won’t be receiving any replies or responses.
Make the email personal and express specific interest
College coaches can tell when you are sending a “canned” email to multiple coaches. Those emails get deleted immediately. The more personal you make your emails the better chance you have for success. In each email make it obvious you know something about their program and tell them why you are a good fit for their team.
Send a copy to all the coaches that matter
Once you’ve determined the colleges make sense for you, simply identify the coach or coaches on staff that handle the recruiting and use them as your contact(s) to communicate with. I would highly recommend you “cc” (carbon copy) every coach on staff that might have a say in recruiting you. For instance, if you’re a running back in football, use the “recruiting coordinator” as your main recipient and “cc” the other offensive coaches. If you are a soccer player interested in a NCAA Division II program, use the “recruiting coordinator” as your main recipient and “cc” all the other coaches on staff. Your goal should be to create some sort of accountability within that coaching staff to respond to your email. By sending a copy to several coaches you also increase your chances that your email will be opened and read by at least one of them.
Blind carbon copy your current coach
When you send an email to a college coach it’s not a bad idea to “blind carbon” your current coach. This keeps your current coach informed on which schools you are communicating with and it involves them in your recruiting process. It also gives your current coach the contact info for those schools and allows them to decide which schools he or she would be willing to email on your behalf.
Here’s the deal
If a college coach doesn’t know who you are, you have to make the introduction. An effective, strategic email is one good way to connect with the right college coaches.