1. Provide accurate stats
College coaches will look at your skills to determine if they’re interested in recruiting you. That means you need to provide relevant and accurate stats for your sport and preferred position.
You may even want to research which stats are the most important for the position you’re interested in playing. For detailed numbers and recommendations, you could start by checking out this sports-specific guide from NCSASports.
When it comes to stats, never round your numbers up or down! Your stats must be precise and accurate because they will be verified. College coaches have years of experience in projecting a player’s potential, so even if your stats aren’t the best of the best, you may still be viewed as a good prospect whose talent can be refined over time. Hint: you may want to include your year-over-year progression in ‘personal record’ numbers as well.
2. Get a recommendation
See if your current coach – from high school or extracurricular training – would be willing to give you a recommendation. If you can get your coach to vouch for your work ethic, athletic abilities, and character, that will instantly make you a more appealing prospect for college recruiters.
A brief letter of recommendation from your coach is a great addition to your portfolio – but a reference can be as simple as a name and contact information included in correspondence with college coaches (remember to get permission first!).
Occasionally, student-athletes’ coaches may even go the extra mile and contact recruiters on their behalf; however, keep in mind that some coaches may not have the time or inclination to provide references, and that’s okay, too.
3. Create a highlight video
Videos give college coaches an unbiased view of your performance. One of the best things you can do is create a highlight video that focuses on your most impressive skills and confirms your stats and performance.
Keep in mind that highlight videos don’t have to be professional quality. As long as the footage is clear and you get your message across – “Here’s why I’m an excellent prospect” – you’re good to go!
We previously delved deeper into this topic: check out our helpful tips for how to create a good highlight video.
4. Don’t neglect academics!
Your grades are important when you’re looking to play college sports. You may have amazing athletic abilities, but if your grades are mostly Cs and Ds, it’s tough for college coaches to justify bringing you on board.
So put in the extra effort and stand out by achieving the best grades you can! A good guideline is to earn a 3.0 GPA (or at the very least above 2.0) and study for the ACT and/or SAT to maximize your score. Keep in mind that the better your academic achievements are alongside athletics, the higher your chances of earning a scholarship.
Another benefit of having good grades? For college coaches, it’s reassurance that you’re a diligent worker who puts your best effort into all endeavors.
5. Keep an eye on social media
Social media is a powerful tool for communicating with college teams and officials as well as showcasing your personality and athletic skills! Make sure to use relevant hashtags to get eyes on your content, and engage with other athletes in a positive manner.
You may have heard news stories of prominent figures being criticized for past tweets and old commentary on social media, sometimes with heavy consequences. Remember that what you do on social media can make or break you, so think carefully before you post!
For some more detailed tips, check out our social media do’s and don’ts for athletes.