Recruiting Column

Recruiting Tip: The recruitability formula

The USA TODAY High School Sports Recruiting Tips are provided by our recruiting partner, Playced.com.

Eligibility + Capability + Adaptability = Recruitability. That’s the formula every high school recruit in the country needs to solve. You have got to understand how “recruitable” you really are, or in other words, how attractive you are to college programs. Here’s a few hints on how to solve the formula.

Eligibility

First things, first. You will not play your sport in college if you can’t make the grades. The end. There is no negotiating the word “student” out of the term “student-athlete”. Every recruit looking to play at the next level must adhere to the GPA requirements, the core course requirements, the standardized test score requirements and the individual institutional requirements expected of them. Once you meet these requirements then you will be eligible to participate and that is the first step in solving the recruitability formula.

Capability

Being honest about your athletic capabilities is the most difficult part of the formula. Without a doubt, this is usually where most high school athletes run into their recruiting brick wall. Unfortunately, being truthful about your capabilities can be downright frustrating and isn’t always easy. It is, however, absolutely necessary if you aspire to play in college. You have to know your strengths, know your weaknesses and know what type of college program makes sense for you. Not every basketball recruit is going to end up at Duke, just like not every volleyball recruit is going to end up at Penn State. And that’s ok.

Adaptability

Have you made any of these comments or something similar lately? “I’ve sent emails to college coaches and not one of them responded.” “That coach came to watch two of my games and hasn’t talked to me since.” “I’m a senior and have not had any college coaches contact me, yet.” “My high school coach is such a jerk and won’t call any college coaches for me.”

If you have, I hope since then, you’ve figured out that recruiting doesn’t always work out the way we want it to. It’s just the nature of the business. That’s why you have to roll with the punches and adapt to your situation. Learn from each and every experience and apply what you learn moving forward. If you aren’t being recruited, figure out why. If you aren’t getting replies to your emails, maybe you are sending emails to the wrong programs. If your high school coach isn’t helping, find another coach that will. You have to adapt to your situation.

There’s the solution to the recruitability formula. If you solve the formula as it applies to you, you will find a college home.