How to handle athletic recruiting visits from college coaches at the school

If you are a sought after recruit, one thing that you must get used to is the fact that you will be getting visits from college coaches very often. These coaches will mostly be coming to your high school but they may also see you in action at one of your games or come to your house for an in home visit.

While a coach will not offer you based on how polite you are, if the staff feels that you are not the type of person they want in their program, they really will move on. Who is going to offer an athlete that is disrespectful of their parents? Chances are high that this athlete will do the same thing to their coaches down the road.

When a coach comes to your high school, you want to present yourself in a positive manner. Make sure to stand up straight because as I have talked about many times, they will be giving you the eye ball test. While legally they cannot say much more than hello, it would be best to be wearing nice clothes. That is tough at times because coaches do come by the school unannounced. However, think of this as the early stages of a job interview. You want the coach to feel that you are a high character person, and for good or bad, they will be looking at your attire when meeting you for the first time.

When speaking with the coach, they may give you a camp brochure or invite you for a visit. Most of the conversation about you will come between your high school coach and the college coach. If you can, speak with your high school coach about the visit and how serious they are about you. Chances are good that the coach may leave the high school with a tape or view the tape with the coach in his office.

There are rules on how often Division I coaches can visit you after games but this is anther important time. Back in my day, the top player on my basketball team would get visits from college coaches all of the time after games. These coaches would wait in line to speak with him. I have seen this many times and even if it happens, do not rush any of the college coaches. They will find it rude and that could turn them off when considering to offer you a scholarship.

Even if you don’t know the coach, make eye contact with him and speak with him about their school. Chances are probably good you have spoken with him on the phone before (At least you hope). They will talk about their season and probably about how you are playing as well. This is just a time to get to know the coaches better.

One of the toughest parts about the coaches visiting is if your team does not win. Honestly, even when I was playing basketball in college, my family knew I would be grumpy for a loss. So even if your team loses, try to be as cordial as possible. No matter if their trip was five minutes or five hours, these coaches drove to see you play in hopes of eventually landing you at the college level. Be nice to the coaches and don’t cop an attitude just because your team lost.

For an in home visit, chances are that the coaches think very highly of you if they are making this trip. While a scholarship is far from a sure thing, it does mean that you are high on their recruiting board if they are spending time to make a trip to your house. This is another time when you want to put your best foot forward. It also gives your parents a chance to learn more about the coaching staff.

When they come for this visit, it is a great time to ask question. Are you concerned about the location? What about their struggles on the court, the field, or the diamond? If those are things that you are seriously worried about, ask them. See what they say about how you would fit into their team and how they would use you. Are they recruiting other players at your position? How is the depth chart?

Unless the visit goes bad (And I have heard some horror stories about the parents eventually yelling at the coaches), they will likely be there to help you with any concerns or questions that you have about their school. This may be the best time to ask questions and learn more about the coaching staff. Talking to a coach over the phone can only help you know more about him just so much. This in home visit is a great time to see what type of people they are.

As with high school visits, make sure to stand tall and wear something that you feel will help you in the long run. If there are questions about your weight or if you have been sick, wear baggy clothes. As mentioned by Ross Tucker in another article, he said wear your big shoes that will help make you look the tallest you can be. That really can help in the long run and is something to think about when they are coming to visit.

Overall, you should be yourself in front of the coaches. If you are putting up a front, they will probably eventually realize it. Make sure to ask questions and learn more about their programs, no matter what level. Don’t just dismiss the coach because they are at the Division III level. When it comes time to transfer from that scholarship school if it doesn’t work out, I can promise you they will remember that.

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