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Importance of April in the Recruiting Search

Were you contacted by coaches on April 15th? This is the first significant day in recruiting for football players graduating in 2015. The 15th is the first day DI college football coaches can call prospective athletes. Each sport has a different day regarding the initial phone call, so it’s important to review the NCAA College Bound Student Athlete Handbook. For the majority of DI sports this date is July 1st after your junior year of high school, but for DII and DIII sports the telephone calls can begin on June 15th

The initial phone call is a big step as a coach is expressing interest in your ability. When you hear from a coach it’s important to be prepare with questions and answers to their questions. Here are some questions coaches may ask you:

How are you doing academically? When answering this question make sure to reference your GPA, test scores, and any extra tutoring you might be receiving. This gives coaches insight on if you're on track to meet their school's admission standards.

What are your strengths as a player? This is your chance to shine. Use this opportunity to sell your ability to the coach and offer to back it up by sending stats and video to them directly.

What areas of your game do you need to improve upon? You can easily turn this question into a positive. Be honest and share your weaknesses, but also give actions plans on how you are improving your weaknesses.

What are your goals for the summer/upcoming season? In any part of your life setting S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Assignable, Realistic, Time-related) goals is important. Sharing these goals with coaches allows them to learn the areas you are wanting to improve upon. If you are part of a team don’t hesitate to share both individual and team goals.

What type of scholarships are you looking for? This question allows you to share what type of financial assistance you will need to attend college. During this conversation you can get an idea from the coach the number of athletic scholarships that are offered yearly and receive ideas regarding non athletic aid.

What are your interests or hobbies? Coaches want to get to know you on a personal level. If you have a part-time job, are involved in other school activities, etc. share this information. It gives coaches a better idea of who you are and if you fit their team.

What other schools are recruiting you? Another question that it does you no good to lie…be honest. If other colleges are reaching out to you it makes you appear as a better recruit. If you have offers don’t hesitate to share that information.

What questions do you have for me? To get a list of questions you should consider asking coaches click here.

Juniors, good luck as you begin to speak with coaches on the phone. After you speak with a coach follow up with an email or letter that allows you to thank the coach for reaching out while providing some stats and additional information on why you are interested in their college.

Sophomores, in a couple of months you may begin hearing from NCAA DII and DIII coaches. You can use this information to have a conversation that gives you insight on what type of athletes the coach is wanting for their program.

Freshman since you are a year or two away from speaking with coaches on the phone use this information to prepare for the conversations you will have in the future.

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