When does junior football recruiting start? Am I already behind the ball?

When does junior football recruiting start?I received a very troubling email from a parent recently. His son is currently a junior at a school that had the same coach in place for the past decade. But after the year, he decided to retire as varsity coach. With few candidates available in the area, the school eventually went with a young coach who has a chance to be very good. He has an extensive football background after playing at a small school.

The problem is now that the senior year of the athlete is rapidly approaching, he has a coach who has not been through the recruiting process before. Going through process confuses the most savvy veterans as they continue to not understand decisions made by college coaches. And when the father asked the coach about recruiting, the coach told him that it doesn’t normally start until after spring practices finish. And when hearing that, I can tell you now that this could not be any further from the truth.

When college coaches start to target players, they do it when they know athletes have some skills that may be good enough for the college level. The first battle they are facing is getting names into their database for the recruiting Class of 2014. Once that starts to fill up, they normally send out the normal questionnaires that are typed up and not personal at all.

But if you are a current junior with aspirations of playing at the scholarship level in college and you have received minimal attention right now, I would be worried. Many colleges use the late winter and spring to bring in a ton of prospect. And no, I am not talking just about the elite prospects.

As mentioned in another article, two articles both brought in over 75 prospects to their campus for recent Junior Days. And while I know that both schools had kids on campus that have scholarship offers, my guess is that some of them will be playing Division II, Division III, or NAIA football at the next level. Also consider that they were able to bring in that many. How many do you think they sent out invites to?

Those numbers alone show that colleges have already really worked hard to focusing their recruiting attention to the current class. In the game of recruiting, there is no time off. Once Signing Day 2013 is wrapped up, if the coaches haven’t already started working hard on 2014, then they will as soon as possible.

In Division I football, the longer you wait to recruit the next class, the more chance that you will miss out on prospects or athletes that could help you win ball games. And considering the staggering amount of money that these coaches are paid, they need the best players and will look for them in the recruiting process.

Basically what this article boils down to is that no, colleges do not wait until after spring practices to recruit athletes. Maybe lower level programs but there is no way State University waits. There are enough people on staff to coach and send out mailings. What else would a graduate assistant be good for?

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