DO's:

  • Focus on your grades! No coach will take a chance on someone who might potentially become ineligible. Take advantage of any opportunities to garner tutoring or making up a quiz/test. If working in a cooperative group assignment or project, and you can pick group members, pick those who value quality work over fun.
  • Challenge yourself with varied courses and levels to show you value hard work.
  • Take every opportunity to improve your skills and tactical knowledge of the game beyond official sessions offered by your club or high school coach. There is limited time coaches have at sessions, so go out and work on fine-tuning or expanding your repertoire on your own.
  • Set high goals, but be realistic. Visit the websites for programs you are interested in and click on bios of players to see how you measure up. It doesn’t mean give up on that school if you’re not there yet; indeed, work harder to try and get there! If your goal is to play for the reigning national champion, are you prepared to play for that team? That’s why….
  • Even if your heart is set on one particular institution, contact as many programs and coaches as possible. Increasing the number of programs you are in contact with is a good thing.
  • Work hard to populate your recruiting profile with game film of the highest quality of video possible. Coaches want to see how you perform under pressure. That is why you should avoid producing highlight reels of you training with a team or in a private session unless that is all you have at first. 
  • Maintain an appropriate social media presence. In this day and age, coaches will be concerned or confused if they don’t see you on Twitter, IG, et. al.
  • Think before you post. What will a coach think when they read or see your post? Is it enhancing or detracting from his/her opinion of you?  Have a semi-regular history without insanely long stretches of posting nothing; however, the flip side is true: posting 10 times a day, often about nonsense, is overwhelming and tells coaches nothing about you other than you have far too much free time on your hands. Spend those extra couple minutes a day practicing, studying, or following up on contacts.
  • Monitor comments on your profile(s). If a friend says something inappropriate, no matter how hard you have tried to keep up a proper sense of decorum, that could all be erased by someone else thinking they’re being funny. 
  • Begin to memorize key talking points about yourself. Try to keep it to 30-60 seconds tops because you never know when you’ll have a chance to speak to someone in the program or how much time you’ll have when that occurs. If you have advance notice of a pending conversation, personalize it in regard to that particular institution for a little extra effect.
  • Compile and organize all communications between you and college programs so you can always be up-to-date with the latest information for each program and can easily refer back to previous conversations and impress them with specifics from those interactions.

DON'Ts:

  • Avoid tacky, inappropriate, or childish usernames on social media. If need be, create new email addresses or Twitter/Instagram handles to ensure coaches are not associating anything negative with you on account of those names.
  • Be sure you are the one interacting with coaches and other program representatives. Having one of your coaches, a parent, a teammate, et. al contacting any program does not send the right message about your work ethic.
  • When sending out messages, do not send mass emails, or even bcc’s. Coaches are keen as to whether a communication is personal or generic in nature, and they want to know you have taken the time to make it personal.  Put yourself in their shoes---you want messages to feel personal as well.
  • While staying in consistent contact is important, sending multiple messages day after day (unless that coach has requested as much) is excessive. Once a week at the most should suffice in most cases. 
  • Do not continue to correspond with any institution you are no longer interested in. Politely tell them as much, so no one is wasting anyone’s time.
  • Verbal offers are not official. Until an offer is written down, keep all programs in the running.
  • Make no assumption that being a great player is enough. Working hard in school, assembling your recruiting profile, communicating with schools, and consistently fine-tuning your abilities all matter just as much.
  • Avoid tacky, inappropriate, or childish usernames on social media. If need be, create new email addresses or Twitter/Instagram handles to ensure coaches are not associating anything negative with you on account of those names.
  • Be sure you are the one interacting with coaches and other program representatives. Having one of your coaches, a parent, a teammate, et. al contacting any program does not send the right message about your work ethic.
  • When sending out messages, do not send mass emails, or even bcc’s. Coaches are keen as to whether a communication is personal or generic in nature, and they want to know you have taken the time to make it personal.  Put yourself in their shoes---you want messages to feel personal as well.
  • While staying in consistent contact is important, sending multiple messages day after day (unless that coach has requested as much) is excessive. Once a week at the most should suffice in most cases. 
  • Do not continue to correspond with any institution you are no longer interested in. Politely tell them as much, so no one is wasting anyone’s time.
  • Verbal offers are not official. Until an offer is written down, keep all programs in the running.
  • Make no assumption that being a great player is enough. Working hard in school, assembling your recruiting profile, communicating with schools, and consistently fine-tuning your abilities all matter just as much.