Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Be Prepared When the College Football Coach Stops By

Yesterday, one of my college football assistants who gets my information called and complained about a recruit that he visited that morning. Exact words, "Why did people put htis kid on my list?' My first comment was that I didn't. His answer was something like, "Yea, I know."

He preceded to describe how the prospect was dresssed, how skinny he was, and how he did not communicate well. I do not know the prospect very well, but many recruiting reporters have him rated higher than he should be.

I wrote an article a long time back about the appearance and manners that a prospect should follow on game day visits. However, I do not think that I have ever written one about appearance and manners that a prospect should use, when a college coach stops by the school to meet the prospect. This is one of the very few times a coach can visit with a senior. Remember that if you are not a senior, college coaches cannot talk to you. Of course, there is the "bump rule," where a coach says, "Hi" to an underclassman.

Some simple suggestions that I have, hopefully, will give a prospect some insight. The evaluation period will end December 16. The next two weeks will be the dead period. The evaluation period will start again in January.
      1. Be in school everyday. Don't slack off. Coaches usually only have time to stop once. Their schedule is really hectic. They may be in your area for just one or two days. Be in school every day the next two weeks. December 6-14
     2. Although I would not expect you to "overdress," but during the evaluation period forget the jeans with holes in them. Wear clothes that are appropriate for school. Nice shirt and nice jeans. Be well groomed. Coaches can stop at anytime during the day. Be prepared for a visit.
     3. As you approach the recruiter, lose any kind of ego. Be humble to the fact that a college recruiter is stopping to meet you.
     4. As you chat with the recruiter, make eye contact. You analyze him as much as will be analyzing you. Absorb everything that he says to you. Regardless of the school, show interest.
     5. Ask questions - How many prospects are you recruiting for my position? Do I have an offer? are just some of the questions to ask.
     6. Be honest. Especially when talking about your GPA and test scores. Also be honest about what other schools are recruiting you. Be honest when discussing other offers that you have received.
     7. Do not crack on other colleges. Limit the information that you reveal about what are other colleges are telling you. Do not be negative.
     8. Be sure to thank the recruiter for taking the time to visit with you. Ask him for a business card. Shake hands and walk back to class.
     8. After you have talked to a recruiter, be sure you know what an "offer"really means. Be sure to talk with your coach about the conversation. If any reference to an "offer" is made, be sure you understand what was said about an "offer."
    9. Limit what you tell recruiting reporters from recruiting websites. Even though they tell you that you can trust them - do not. Their job is to get information and be the first to post it on their website. Give them basic information about your visit. You are not obligated to tell them every detail.
  10. Share the details of your visit with your parents. Get ready for another day and more recruiters.

Underclassmen - Realize that if a coach recruiter is talking to you, he is breaking an NCAA rule. Realize that he knows that he is breaking an NCAA rule. Realize that saying "Hi" is a stretch, but a chat is breaking an NCAA rule.     

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