Changing high schools and how it could factor into the overall athletic recruiting process with letters, recruiting, and game tapes

Teenagers change high schools all the time in every part of the country.  It is something that basically happens everyday because of a job change by the parents.  And while most schools won’t raise a fuss about a choir member making the move to another school, the transfer of big name high school athletes always seems to find a way into the newspaper or message boards.

So what happens if you are that high school athlete who decides that changing schools will help you with the overall recruiting process?  It may help you in the future but there is no doubt that the key here is figuring out what to do regarding recruiting letters, getting full game tapes for your highlight video, and not burning bridges so that your former high school coach doesn’t talk negatively about you.

First lets start with the game tapes.  You just finished up your sophomore season of football at Bayside High School but feel the program is not doing you any justice in showcasing your skills.  In this hypothetical situation, I believe that you have enough talent to warrant an eventual scholarship.  Without that, tracking down these tapes is worthless.

So during the entire spring, your family has openly discussed you transferring to Valley High School.  Their football program is much better and you are friends with some of their athletes.  Because you feel that it will help you both athletically and academically, you decide to make the transfer.  You start attending summer workouts and will be a Valley student starting next fall.  In this hypothetical situation, your family moved to the Valley school district to avoid any transfer penalties.

You and some of your Valley teammates decide to go to a few camps this summer.  The first one that you hit up is at State University.  You perform extremely well and their coaches start talking to you quite a bit.  They begin showing you more interest and eventually ask you to send them three of your game tapes.  Do you go back to the Bayside coach, who is likely not thrilled with you after transferring, and ask him for those tapes?  You decide not to try that just to avoid the bitterness from him.

What you need to do is speak with your current coach and see what he can come up with.  Obvious as rivals, the Valley coach will have the Bayside game.  But what about others?  You need to ask him or go through the process yourself of calling other high school coaches from schools that you played well against.  Explain them the situation and see if they can help.  Some will be jerks about and others will give you a copy.  It honestly will depend on the coach.  What I would do is rank all of your games in how you performed and call the coach that you played the best game against.

Now that you have that taken care of and can send it to that specific college coach, what should you do to get the word out regarding your transfer so that other college coaches don’t continue sending their letters to Bayside High School?  There are two things that you can do.  You can email/call the coaches that may have sent early interest and inform them about your transfer.  This lets them know that it happened and that you are at a new school now.

The second is to contact media in the area and explain them your situation.  This can be a prep writer from the newspaper, Rivals, Scout, or anywhere else.  What you are doing this for is to make sure to get the word out regarding the transfer.  College coaches read these sites so getting it published and out there will definitely help get the word out.

There are still going to be college coaches that likely send letters to your previous school.  It happens because they are getting your information off of random databases and those college inquiries won’t be all that personal.  So if you miss those, you likely won’t be missing much.  Just make sure to get the word out and contact the schools that matter to you that you changed schools.

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