Football Recruiting Timeline
Most high school athletes and parents need to know when to start the recruiting ball rolling; when and where do I start? What is the first step? I want to be a scholarship athlete and play football at the college level, what do I need to do? How do I get a football scholarship? When do I start? The biggest mistake a student athlete or a parent can make is waiting until the last minute. The key to your success in the college football recruiting process is thorough preparation during your high school years. If you haven’t done the preparation and have waited until the last minute don’t just give up, prepare your football scholarship resume and send it to as many college coaches as you can and if your good enough you should be recruited. Freshman year At this stage you should be enjoying playing high school football and be well settled into your school. It’s important that you keep your high school coach informed about what you are doing outside of the school environment.If possible become involved in leadership camps, student government, community groups, student exchange programs etc. Taking part in some or all of these extra-curricular activities shows the college football coach that as well as being a good student you have leadership potential and well developed social skills. Sophomore year Now is the time to become familiar with the NCAA Academic Requirements. Make sure you are on track. You could be the best high school football player in your state but if you can’t meet the NCAA Academic Requirements you don’t play. Your academic results are the key to being recruited, it’s that simple. Make sure you are on track in relation to “core requirements”.You should make a short-list of the schools you would like to attend and send an introduction letter to the football coaches at those colleges including updates of your football and academic achievements. You should also be looking at the academic entrance requirements of the colleges you wish to attend. College entrance standards can differ from school to school and are separate from NCAA requirements. College Athletic Recruiting companies can make the recruiting process much easier for you. Click here for a review of the services offered by the NCSA.
RECRUITING TIP: Don’t just pick 3-4 school for your short-list of schools. You’re in your sophomore year and a lot changes from now until your Senior year. Pick 15-20 schools for your short-list.
Compile a video/DVD that includes game footage, basic drills and skills and personal highlights if possible. College football coaches need to see how you perform as part of a team, don’t just prepare a “highlights” tape. Junior year Have you registered with the NCAA Eligibility Center? DO IT NOW. Prepare your Football Scholarship Resume and send it out to the college coaches on your short-list. Also send your ACT and SAT scores to the NCAA Eligibility Center. You need to keep up with your studies while keeping a focus on the NCAA Academic Requirements as well as the entrance requirement of the colleges you want to attend. Check to see if any of these requirements have changed since you first short-listed a school. Prepare a further video/DVD and make sure you include the “best” from your sophomore year video. Let the college coaches know you have a video and send it to any coach that asks for a copy. At the end of the football season, send out another update letter to all the colleges on your list. Watch as many college games in your sport as you can. If you can attend games played by teams on your short list of colleges all the better. At the completion of your junior year you are permitted phone contact with college coaches. You can make as many calls as you like but keep in mind that coaches cannot phone you until July 1st when you have completed your junior year. Senior year Keep up with your studies and make sure you keep an eye on the NCAA Academic requirements.Email another resume with all your updated achievements and information including your team schedule. If you are offered paid college visits make sure you TAKE THEM. During your visits always ask questions, now is the time to impress the coach. Even if you take an official recruiting trip don’t give up on other schools and continue to call other coaches.
RECRUITING TIP: Any commitment you make now is not binding until you sign a National Letter of Intent, [NLI], and an Offer of Financial Aid. If you sign and then change your mind you will lose at least 1 year of eligibility. The college is also not bound by anything they have said or offered you until after you have signed. National Collegiate Scouting Association (NCSA). Reviews and discussion.