Maximizing Prospect Communication with College Coaches | STACK

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for our FREE Newsletter.

Maximizing Prospect Communication with College Coaches

July 29, 2012

Must See College Recruiting Videos

Effective communication with coaches is critical for high school student-athletes finalizing their college search. The recruiting process is not a sprint; it's a marathon. Your efforts need to be tactical and well planned for cultivating sincere relationships with future coaches. Prospects who embrace this important recruiting tool give themselves the greatest chance of success in the final analysis.

How you communicate can either move your college search plan toward your goal or cause confusion and misdirection. Get yourself on the radar of college coaches by realizing your ability and obligation to be proactive in your recruiting efforts. Cultivate this skill early on when seeking relationships with coaches at your target schools. Effective communication will prove your willingness to be an equal partner to the coaches.

Do the necessary research and pay attention to the way you present yourself. Start by getting familiar with the NCAA's contact rules. For example, did you know that July 1 was the first opportunity for most college coaches to initiate phone and off-campus face-to-face contact? Understanding that you may call or e-mail a coach at any time, with rare exceptions, is important. When communicating, practice "persistence with respect" to give yourself a better chance of grabbing favorable attention.

If even thinking about speaking with college coaches gives you the jitters, you are not alone, and your anxiety is not groundless. Coaches can be brutally honest at times, delivering information you might not want to hear. But keep in mind, college coaches are also down to earth, caring men and women who want you to find the right college match.

Honestly, few prospects are ever completely ready to meet and speak with coaches. The trick is to make sure you always lean in a "prepared direction." If you falter or stumble when communicating with coaches, simply find your way back to center. Coaches aren't concerned about the hiccups; they want to see how you recover.

Remember, coaches use three simple factors to size up a prospect: academic strength, athletic ability and depth of character. Since they are gut thinkers, coaches want to know who you are on the inside, which makes character an area they like to explore. This will be quickly apparent in the questions they ask; and their judgments on your character will be based on how you communicate and present yourself.

A proverbial "red flag" for communication is reaching out with no real agenda. As a prospect, you always need to provide information that will improve your chances of staying in the "A" recruiting file. Whether it's news about a higher ACT score or results from a select tournament, give the coach something that has "grip"—something that will improve your position on the recruiting chart.

Proactive communication with potential coaches is key, for two reasons. First, offering well thought out information that is pertinent to the college search sends a clear message that you are well prepared. Second, considering that they deal with hundreds of potential prospects, coaches value time management. Your future coach will appreciate and remember any proactive effort you make to respect that.


Tom Kovic
- Tom Kovic is the founder and president of Victory Collegiate Consulting, where he advises families and prospective student-athletes in developing and executing personal plans for...
Tom Kovic
- Tom Kovic is the founder and president of Victory Collegiate Consulting, where he advises families and prospective student-athletes in developing and executing personal plans for...
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

Practical Recruiting Tips for High School Athletes

recruiting tipsYou have been playing your sport since you are a little kid and you are pretty good at lt. Now its time for you to start to think about...

3 Ways to Trust Your Gut During the College Recruiting Process

NCAA Recruiting Rules: Baseball

What is a Parent's Role in Recruiting?

Basketball Recruits: What You Should Do in November

Do Athletes Make Better Students?

What's in a National Letter of Intent?

Recruiting Tips for High School Soccer Players

STACK Recruiting Guide 2014: Victor Cruz and the 'It' Factor

College Recruiting FAQ: How Does National Signing Day Work?

Basketball Recruiting: It's Never Too Late

Boost Your Academics: 4 Tips for High School Athletes

College Recruiting FAQ: Early Action vs. Early Decision

Prepare Early for the College Recruiting Process

Tennis Recruiting: Making a Decision

How a Bad Game Affects Your Recruiting Status

Volleyball Recruiting: Searching for More Than Talent

Why You Should Consider Post-Grad Prep School for Football

Demystifying the College Athletic Recruiting Process

4 Common College Recruiting Myths Debunked

College Baseball Recruiting: How to Control Your Own Destiny

14-Year-Old Quarterback Verbally Commits to LSU

3 Ways to Climb the Recruiting Ladder

College Football Recruits: 5 Strategies to Get Noticed

Volleyball Recruiting: Why Hasn't the Coach Called Me?

Why You Should Play Small-School Sports

Combatting the Early Commitment Epidemic in Women

Recruiting: You Need to Score, But Your Coach Won't Let You?

The Tennis College Recruiting Summer Checklist

Tennis Recruiting: 6 Tips for Getting Attention from Colleges

7 Bad Behaviors That Will Help You Play College Sports

College Admission Tips for Ivy League and Division III

Featured STACKlete: Reagan Rogers

What the New SAT Means for Student-Athletes

Understanding the NCAA Eligibility Center

5 Essential Steps for College Recruits

Tennis Recruiting: Official vs. Unofficial Visits

New NCAA Rules on Junior College Football Recruiting Explained

One Thing All Outstanding High School Senior Athletes Must Do

The Best (and Worst) Part of Choosing a School