NCSA: Top five questions recruiting coaches receive from families

Kyle Winters was a standout high school pitcher who was drafted by the Florida Marlins in the fifth round and played seven seasons for various minor league teams. Kyle is just one of many former college and professional players, college coaches and parents who are part of the Next College Student Athlete team. Their knowledge, experience and dedication, along with NCSA’s history of digital innovation and long-standing relationship with the college coaching community, have made NCSA the largest and most successful athletic recruiting network in the country.

As the go-to source for information about the college recruiting process, we here at NCSA get a lot of questions. From what to do at combines to understanding the NCAA recruiting rules, there is a lot that the average student-athlete and their family simply do not know about or may not have time to research. That’s why NCSA recruiting coaches try to answer as many questions as they can and help families get the most out of their college recruiting journey. But what exactly are the most common questions that NCSA recruiting coaches hear? Read on to find out.

“What should my video include?”

Athletes and families ask a lot of questions about video, with this one taking the cake. It’s understandable, as highlight and skills videos are more effective if you include exactly what college coaches want to see in them. The first thing to keep in mind is that different sports require different types of videos. In-game highlights are essential for recruiting in sports like football, volleyball and soccer. Baseball and softball coaches, however, want to see footage that focuses on technical skills and drills.

Once you figure out what kind of video you need to film, you’ll also want to include your athletic and academic info in the first few seconds of the video. Then, jump right into your best clips. Your entire video should be no more than three to five minutes long. And since most coaches watch recruiting videos on mute, there’s no need to add dramatic music or special effects. For a full rundown on recruiting videos, you’ll want to read the NCSA guide to college recruiting videos.

“Which camps should I attend?”

This question isn’t about whether or not your student-athlete should attend a camp or combine, as much as it is about finding ones that offer the best chance for receiving an offer. First, you’ll want to consider camps at schools that you are interested in attending. Next, determine if you will be attending the camp as a “recruit” or a “camper.”

If you’re getting personal invites from a school’s coaching staff, it means you’re on the coach’s radar and one of the select few invited to the camp as a recruit. It means the school has interest in you as a prospect, and the coaches have likely already watched your film or seen you in-person and invited you to camp for a closer look. Now, if you received a somewhat generic invite to the camp, you’re probably a camper and not a recruit. It can still be beneficial to attend camp as a camper, but you should read up on the ins and outs of camps, combines and other events.

“How do I walk onto a team?”

Succeeding as a walk-on athlete is no easy task. Unrecruited walk-ons participate in an open tryout for a chance to make the roster. In most cases, the student-athlete qualifies for admission to the school and communicates with the coach before the tryout. Walk-ons don’t receive any financial assistance. However, they can earn a scholarship down the line.

It’s definitely possible for you to walk onto a team. Many student-athletes do it every year — 46 percent of DI athletes and 39 percent of DII athletes, to be exact. But there are very few scholarship opportunities and there may be little or no playing time available. To make the most of your situation you’ll have to learn how walk-on offers differ from scholarship offers.

“How do I stand out to college coaches?”

The best answer to this question is to be an elite, once-in-a-lifetime athlete. Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen very often, so the rest of us have to approach the college recruiting process from a different angle. And that means being proactive and reaching out to college coaches. This includes sending introductory emails, following up, responding to recruiting letters and keeping in touch over time. You’ll need to brush up on how to contact college coaches.

“How do I get more coaches to view my profile?”

The NCSA network boasts thousands of college coaches who recruit across 34 different sports. When student-athletes set up an NCSA profile, they become discoverable by college coaches from across the country who are looking for athletes to fill out their rosters. But student-athletes also need to fill out their profiles with the information that coaches need to see so that they can generate steady coach activity.

From the sports side, this includes adding key stats and measurables, uploading highlight video and contacting their top matched schools directly in order to get recruiting attention. From the academics side, this includes GPA, standardized test scores and a high school transcript, since college coaches don’t want to spend time recruiting athletes that will not be able to meet the academic requirements to get admitted into their college.

Athletes are 17 times more likely to receive coach views with an uploaded transcript and 12 times more likely to receive coach views with a video. A complete profile also boosts their chances of showing up in results when a coach searches NCSA for athletes based on criteria like position or key stats and measurables. Interested in giving online recruiting a try? Join the NCSA network for free today.

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