In the minds of most athletes and especially their parents, the way to improve your stock in the eyes of college coaches and get recruited by a number of big schools as a senior is to put together a great senior season. I have heard this from countless players that they are focusing on the season and will let the recruiting take care of itself. But even if you have an Elite All State season as well as break numerous State and school records, that doesn’t mean it will help you in the recruiting process all that much.
In my opinion for seniors, there are two things that will really spark your overall football recruiting interest at the highest levels. Because these schools have already worked ahead and know what players they are going to recruit, a great senior year won’t cut it. So with that in mind, find out what two things could really spark your overall recruiting.
I came up with these two things simply by following the recruiting process of a school in the Big 12. This program has had a lot of success over the last decade and that includes multiple finishes in the top 10 poll at the end of the season. And although this may vary by college, I can promise you that most schools do thing this way (especially at the BCS/Division I-A level).
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Getting that first offer
I say this all the time but scholarship offers breed other scholarship offers. The reason is because college coaches evaluate a prospect who has received an offer from a school at their level (especially if they are a conference rival) longer than one that doesn’t have any offers on the table. Opposing college coaches don’t want to be the one that let a future All American slip out of their home state. So if Tennessee knows that Auburn has offered an in-state prospect, I am willing to bet a lot of money that the Vols will make damn sure that they have studied film and done a background check on him.
This is the exact reason why I have always stressed to broadcast your overall recruiting attention. You need to have people in the media that can make sure that word will get out that State University has offered a scholarship. Once Out of State University knows, they are certainly going to take a longer look. The good thing is you can also sell this Division I offer on your recruiting profile as well.
Going back to the Big 12 school I mentioned above, over the last five years, I can only remember them offering three kids at this point in the recruiting process who attended their camp. The reason that they eventually offered two of them (I will talk about the third soon) is because they received another offer from a school at a similar level. Once that happened, the Big 12 school basically realized that they didn’t have much of a choice. It was either offer him or let him go.
Seeing other prospects at your position commit elsewhere (or even decommit)
If you are really a recruiting junkie and follow the football recruiting process very in-depth, you can watch the domino process of what happens when a high profile recruit commits to a school. The position that it is easiest to follow is at quarterback simply because most schools take at least one quarterback every year or two.
Take a high profile like the #1 rated defensive end in the country, Darius Hamilton. This senior is listed by Rivals.com as having a top five of Rutgers, Cal, Florida, Alabama, and Tennessee. In this hypothetical situation, just say that Henderson picks Florida and they fill their defensive end commitments for 2011 and are done recruiting there. But there are still five other schools trying to figure out their number situation. Cal and Rutgers have other ends that they really like and with their top target gone, they decide to offer a recruit that they have ranked as a B (as opposed to the As they had offered earlier). Alaabama doesn’t like who they have left on their board so they decide to bank the scholarship at this point. Tennessee loved Henderson but didn’t need a defensive end so they use their scholarship for another position.
The crazy thing about this story is that it happens all the time, it is just hard to follow unless you have inside access to the college coaches. If you have attended a camp, visited the school, and know that they like you but they haven’t offered, then there is a good chance that you could be a B, C, or D recruit. You may need a few breaks with other prospects picking elsewhere to get a scholarship from that school, regardless how good you look on your senior tape. Yes, some schools may be wowed by that tape but this usually means very little from a school that has already seen you.
I do always try to stress that if you are a senior and if the schools recruiting you haven’t offered yet, then you need to broaden your search and look for other programs. The reason is because unless the dominoes fall your way, then likely will get a walk-on at most from that school.
It really does suck for recruits out there but outside of finding new schools, these are the two major ways to spark recruiting interest from programs that are currently showing you interest. Start looking outside your immediate area and find programs that could be a better fit. You may find a school that is perfect for you or an offer from a new school may lead to a scholarship from one close to home.
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