One of the things that I have said when talking about the recruiting process is that it should be taken very seriously and considered almost as an early job interview. For both, you need to stay extremely professional and impress either your future employers or future coaches. Your resume or highlight video must wow them enough for them to offer you the job or the scholarship.
And something that prospective employers have been doing in recent years is looking up the names of their possible employees. They check Twitter, Facebook, and anything else they can to come up with any dirt. If they find photos of someone who gets drunk frequently, they may pass. I feel strongly that college coaches would do the same during the recruiting process as well.
In most situations before offering a scholarship, the college coaches do as much background work as they can to find out information. While it may not always be true, these coaches could move on because they heard you are a bad kid or lazy. And as I said in a recent article, things like work ethic can be a huge difference maker in the athletic recruiting process.
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- E-Book: How Seniors Can Finish the Football Recruiting Process Strong
Division I college coaches will talk to your family, coaches (And not always from your main sport), other teachers at the school (This is why you should never burn any bridges), janitors, area coaches, or anyone else they feel knows the situation well. The most in-depth coaches will do just about anything to find information about you as an athlete and a person.
That is why they will look up your name in those social networking sites and see what they come up with. If you are 17-years old and your profile picture is you with a beer in your hand (I really hope no readers on this site are that dumb), than chances are strong that they may look further into this. Most coaches would rather be honest about their players than give a college coach a hassle with someone who has drinking issues.
Here was a recent quote from Joe Schad on twitter: One ACC coach said he dropped recruit for language on Twitter. Told position coach: “He’s gonna get you on ESPN and it won’t be for a TD.”
Yes, this doesn’t seem like all that big of a deal but it is just something as a recruit to be wary of. The moral of this article is not to put anything stupid on your social networking profiles. While you may lock them from the public, there are ways around it and the coach may actually try adding you as a friend. If that is the case, the best thing you want to do is probably avoid it in the first place.
If you have a social networking profile anywhere on the Internet, I would check through my pictures now and see if there is anything that can give a bad impression. It doesn’t matter what it is. Also check your wall or comments and see if there is anything out of line left by friends. If these sites were around when I was 17-years old, I definitely would have been doing dumb things. But being a recruit, it is not worth the risk of possibly turning off a school with something so minor and so easy to change.