Regardless of the sport, you want to stay on top and ahead of things during the athletic recruiting process. This will make things less stressful and just give you a better feel for your overall recruiting. A few things that you can stay ahead of are researching schools, figuring out what interests your son or daughter has in their college, and learning as much as you can about the process.
If you do the three things mentioned above, you will definitely be ahead of 75% of the families (if not more) that are also trying to go through recruiting. There are however a number of things that you cannot plan ahead for. And one of the major ones is summer camps. It doesn’t matter the sport or the school, now is not a good time to pick out your summer camp schedule.
The reason is actually pretty simple. For this example, you are a junior football recruit who has been receiving early interest from Alabama, Florida, USC, and all of the top programs across the country. This early interest is simply because you did a good job marketing yourself to these schools. It doesn’t mean they have seriously evaluated you or anything along those lines. You are in their recruiting database along with tens of thousands of other athletes in your grade.
How can I help support Recruiting-101?
- Use highlight-videos.com for a Hudl tuneup/new video
- E-Book: Guide to the Athletic Recruiting Process for Parents
- E-Book: How Juniors Can Get a Head Start on the Football Recruiting Process
- Complete Package: Junior Football All State Recruiting Package
- E-Book: Football Recruiting Position by Position Advice
- Complete Package: Senior Football All State Recruiting Package
- E-Book: Producing a Scholarship Worthy Highlight Video
- E-Book: How Seniors Can Finish the Football Recruiting Process Strong
You get an early camp invite from these schools so because you think they are laying on the full court recruiting press, your parents decide to start booking flights and sending in deposit checks. You will be spending the summer traveling the country because they feel you are an obvious Division I recruit who will get offers from everywhere.
The issue is that for most sports, it is way too early to get a real feel for where you sit with these schools. College football coaches cannot call junior recruits until late April and throughout the month of May. In a perfect scenario, I would stress you wait all the way until late May to finalize your camp plans and finally send in that check (or input your credit card number).
Football is a perfect example but all sports do this. They send out camp invites to thousands of recruits because they know that they will bite on the bait. A chance to get a Division I scholarship is certainly worth spending the $300, getting some coaching while on their campus, and competing for a scholarship. Most college coaches will tell athletes if they are the best (insert your position here), then you will get a scholarship. Being that best position player is not going to be easy by any means so you have to realize that going in.
Again, there is no reason to hurry into figuring out your summer schedule. The majority of athletes that I have seen travel the country attending camp after camp are usually the ones with a very limited amount of scholarship offers (if they have any at all).
You can take the time to start thinking ahead about potential camps. Think about going to a dream school camp, a camp that has great teaching, and a smaller school camp (Division I-AA/Division II). You can insert a few others depending on your time and financial situation but attending at least a day or two at three different camps may help put yourself into the best position.
Picking out camps is something that should not be done for months so don’t get ahead of yourself. Enjoy the winter and spring, work hard, and patiently wait to see which schools are really recruiting you. Then you can open up your parents’ checkbook and start throwing out money like wildfire.