Did you know only 2% of scholarship athletes are actively recruited? The other 98% have to "recruit themselves" by reaching out to coaches, recruiters and scouts!
Did you know Chaminade, a division two school in Hawaii, has an annual recruiting budget of only $5,000 dollars? To save money they do all there recruiting by searching online websites for talent, evaluating dvds and youtube videos!
We wrote the following 9 Step Guideline to help you "recruit yourself" and get on a college coaches evaluation list.
1. Become Eligible (NCAA Eligibility & The Right Classes)
The first giant step requires you to do two things. Make sure you have a clear amateur status (not being payed or receiving benefits for your athletic talents) and see if you are on pace to meet the minimum academic standards to receive a scholarship set by the NCAA.
You are REQUIRED by the NCAA to meet a minimum grade point average (GPA) in core classes as well as on your SAT's or ACT's. For D2 basketball there is a fixed GPA requirement of 2.0 with either 820 SAT score or a 68 on your ACT. However D1 works on a sliding scale, simply put the scale means the higher your GPA the lower your test scores can be and vice-versa.
This is very important because sometimes D2 caliber players qualify to play only Division 1, which may force them to play Division 3 or JUCO basketball.
Members Only- How does the D1 sliding scale work? What are CORE classes? Junior college then D1 or D2? What the is the NAIA? Complete Rules and NCAA Requirements.
*Tip- You only have 4 years to qualify so Always take summer school classes! Even if you dont have to, raising that one D+ to a C+ could make or break your recruitment and it wont ruin your summer.
2. Create A Winning Recruiting Resume (Academic and Athletic)
The purpose of creating a recruiting resume would be same reason why you would create a resume to get a job.
You should think of obtaining a scholarship like receiving a job. In some cases colleges will be giving you $50,000 a year to go to school in exchange for your basketball talents (More then most college grads start off making!).
Your resume should peak interest from coaches while separating yourself from others. Along with your video highlights, your resume should intrigue a coach enough for that he or she is willing to receive further information and/or see you play in person.
MEMBERS ONLY- Find out what 6 QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD ANSWER on your resume. Real samples and professional templates that work.
*Tip - Name dropping is ENCOURAGED! Have you have played alongside or against the best teams and players in New England or the country ? Let coaches know! It gives them an easier means of evaluating your talent level.
3. Evaluate Yourself And Where You CAN Play
When looking at schools you want to approach it is important to take a step back and see where you CAN play not just where you WANT to play. Armed with your academic and athletic resume you can now start to decipher what level you can play on.
The question you should ask yourself now is what position can I play in college? What position you play in college will generally rely on 3 things: your basketball skill-set, height and athleticism.
After deciding where you fit, make three list with at least 10 schools in each list.The three list should include schools you have a slight chance to be recruited by, "Reach Schools," ones you should be able to play at, "Realistic Schools," and programs that are slightly beneath you, "Safety schools."
MEMBERS ONLY- List of New England Schools with contact Info, Position Definitions with "unwritten" height and athleticism requirements.
*TIP - Focus on schools that include your area in their pipeline. A coach that is actively recruiting in your area is more likely to stop by and see you play then would a coach from the opposite side of the country who has to take an expensive flight. Most schools have TIGHT budgets for recruiting and this is a major way for them to SAVE MONEY. Take advantage of it!
4. Sell Yourself With 2 Videos (Highlights and Game)
The most important step in getting your name on the a college coach recruiting list is having video that HIGHLIGHTS your STRENGTHS!
Your video should give credibility to whatever claims you intend on giving a coach. In this day and age you should have high definition video that allows recruiters to see the game clearly and also be in some type of online format for easy distribution (i.e youtube, blip-tv, vimeo etc).
Your highlight video should only be between 2-5 mins long for basketball. Remember, you are just trying to get to the next step, coaches seeing you in person or asking for more info. There is NO need to show yourself making the same shot or layup over and over again!
A coach will only ask for your full game tape if you have peaked his interest and he wants to evaluate you as a player completely. This is a GREAT sign but doesn't mean you are being recruited yet! Make sure you have full game tapes available.
Jared Terrell Recruiting Highlight Tape
MEMBERS ONLY - What makes a good highlight tape? Which full game should I send? Should I pay someone or make my own?
*Tip - Your highlight tape doesn't necessarily have to be game footage. If your a 6'10 sophomore who is agile and can do windmill dunks, footage of you working out may be enough to peak a college coaches interest. Be SMART and CREATIVE!
5. Build An Online Profile/Website
Lots of coaches, especially ones at a distance from you, will want to keep track of how you are doing.
Building a website or blog that has your highlights, game film and stats is a great way for you to show recruiters your progression as a student-athlete.
There are many other recruiting sites that allow you to upload videos and update your profile. We are always researching them and you should be too.
MEMBERS ONLY- How much will this cost me? Website, Blog, or Recruiting Database? What information should I NOT put on my page? How often should I update?
*TIP - Sites like facebook are for personal use. There are many sites that allow you to upload pictures, videos, and socially interact with players and coaches. Why not use these free resources HERE?
6. Connect With Schools On Your List (Email/Phone).
Now you have all the necessary resources that you need in the process of courting a scholarship, its time to connect with the schools.
It is recommended that you personally reach out to a school if you do not have a CREDIBLE coach or scout helping you in the process (Family members who proclaim you to be the next big thing may turn a coach off).
Email is the fastest and easiest way to contact a coach, but if your having trouble getting a response pick up the phone and call! This shows "determination and persistence" characteristics all coaches want in their players.
MEMBERS ONLY - What should I say in email or over the phone? Sample email templates and phone dialogues, Who is a credible enough to help me?
*TIP - It may be difficult to find certain high profile coaches information but since they work in the school sometimes there email will be "email@example.com"
7. Play In The “Right” Exposure Events And Tournaments
If you have already received interest from colleges you would like to attend, you can simply ask those coaches where they will be and what they suggest that you should attend.
Every exposure event you go to will EVER go to caters to a certain level of player. Coaches and Scouts go these events with a list of players they want to EVALUATE way BEFORE the event ever starts
One way to increase your chances of being recruited is by winning! If you don't get a chance to play against highly regarded teams or players at first, making it to a playoff or championship round will increase your chances of being seen by recruiters.
MEMBERS ONLY- List of top camps and events nationally and in New England with descriptions, Who's who list of scouts and writers in New England with interviews, How much of who I play AAU with matters?
*Tip - Many division 1 schools run their own camps in the summer. Try to get interest from them before hand, coaches have been know to sometimes recruit and offer players who perform well at these camps.
8. Im Being Recruited...Or Am I? (Letters,Interest,Offers)
Receiving letters from colleges is a good thing but does NOT mean you are being recruited or that the coaches personally know who you are. Schools send out 100's if not 1000's of typed letters to players across the world.
You can begin to consider yourself being recruited when coaches call, email or watch you play in person and tell you themselves they are recruiting you.
Start recording which schools are actively recruiting you and focus on those ones. An offer is good for a one year renewable scholarship and the deal is not set in stone until you sign your National Letter of Intent.
MEMBERS ONLY- When should I verbally commit? How to turn Interest Into Offers. An assistant offered me am I all set? There recruiting me but why wont they offer me?
*TIP - Schools sometime play monkey see monkey do, dont be afraid to let a coach know what schools are actively recruiting you or have offered.
9. Make A Choice - (Visits)
Hopefully after following the first 7 steps you know have some choices of where you want to attend. For most student-athletes the choice will come down to financial-aid, academics, playing time, and location.
Remember you are student before an athlete so the best possible education you can receive at the best price should out weigh the other factors, but your comfrot level is also extremly important.
If you are not comfortable at your schools location or unhappy with playing time it WILL have a negative impact on you receiving an education. Interact with coaches players and faculty on official or unofficial visits to get a sense of where you fit in and if u like your position.
MEMBERS ONLY- What questions should I ask on visits? How do I narrow my list to 3 schools? Can I back out of my commitment?
*TIP- Make sure your school is somewhere you would be comfortable attending if you were to have a career ending injury (Knock on Wood). This may be the most important decision of your life.