The differences in football recruiting and basketball recruiting

The differences in football recruiting and basketball recruitingThe more I follow football and basketball recruiting throughout the country, the more differences that I find between the two processes that athletes go through.  Think about being a Division I recruit for both sports but having totally different things to do for college coaches in each sport.

I am not saying that one sport is easier to get recruited for because both have their pros and cons.  But here are some of the major differences between these sports and things to prepare for if you are hoping to get recruited in either sport.

Basketball: One sport is king | Football: We love multi-sport athletes
Don’t ask me why but college basketball coaches love basketball players that focus all of their attention on basketball.  It may lead to burnout but it will likely make them a better player on the basketball court.  For football, college coaches love wrestlers or basketball players.  They feel that these multi-sport athletes can use these other sports to compete year round and improve their overall athleticism on the field.  See for more.

Football: A recruiting highlight video is vital | Basketball: A recruiting highlight video is fine
Huge difference here in the two sports.  Any college football coach in the country would be willing to offer a scholarship off of a recruiting highlight tape that simply blows them away.  This happens all the time and is vital in the recruiting process.  For basketball, coaches want to see the athletes competing against solid competition.  As a coach once told me, a scrub can put together a good highlight video from the last two minutes of every game.  That is why seeing them in person is important.

Basketball: AAU is your best chance for a scholarship offer | Football: Camps may help you land a scholarship offer
As mentioned above, college basketball coaches want to see an athlete perform in person and judge their abilities.  They don’t take much off of a recruiting highlight video.  While it can help some basketball players, it is not always needed.  For football recruits, if you have already landed offers from your recruiting highlight video, then you don’t exactly need to go to summer camps.  These camps could help but they are not needed like summer basketball teams.

Football: A tweener could make a perfect tight end | Basketball: You are too small for power forward and too slow for small forward
I have seen a number of basketball players in the 6-foot-4 to 6-foot-6 range also excel on the football field.  At that size, they usually have the opportunity to play athletics at a higher level on the football field.  College coaches are looking for that size of a player with athleticism at all levels.  For hoops, a 6-foot-4 power forward (unless you are like Charles Barkley back in the day), is almost destined for Division III.

Football: More room for error | Basketball: Much less room for error
With the scholarship limits in football, these coaches can take more chances with athletes and keep them around longer to see if they develop.  In college basketball, these coaches must win soon and having a player on scholarship who can’t play whatsoever will hurt the entire team.  They may be more prone to nudge them out the door for those that can’t play.

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