If it is that early in the recruiting process, schools can only have limited contact with you. By NCAA rules, they can only send you a questionnaire and camp invites. Obviously with the numbers game at the summer camps, they would love to bring you on campus. That doesn’t matter if you will be the most sought recruit in that class or someone who eventually decides not to play in college.
But if you have already made a name for yourself as a sophomore and are getting that early recruiting interest, you are in a good position. You are already ahead of the game and have been added to the recruiting lists of college coaches. As mentioned before, these recruiting lists are huge in size but it is important to at least get yourself on them.
While it does not happen often, some schools do actually extend scholarship offers to sophomores. Because of the rules that were mentioned above, what the college coach has to do is work with your high school. The college coach has to call your coach and tell them to either relay message or have you call him. It does not happen all that often but for recruits that some consider can’t miss athletes, early scholarships are extended.
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
If you are hoping to get that early offer, realize that it will not be easy. The first step is to build an athletic profile (CLICK HERE FOR THAT ARTICLE). This is basically an information sheet that allows the coach to learn more about you, your abilities on the football field, and get contact information. Because I have already talked in great lengths about this, I won’t harp on it too much.
The second step you must take to get it is to put together a highlight video. You can either do it yourself, have your coach make it, or go through a third party service like www.highlight-videos.com. It really is up to you but you want the video to showcase your ability on the field. Coaches will also be requesting full game tapes as well so don’t be surprised when that comes.
One note that I must include. If you have not played varsity football, you are wasting your times with these steps. College coaches do not want to see an athlete dominating the sophomore or freshman level. The time and money you put into these steps is not worth it. Just be patient and wait your turn to be successful at the varsity level.
What I would recommend to do once the highlight video is completed is to have your high school coach, you, or your parents contact the college coach and ask them if they want a copy of it. Like I have mentioned before, I would never advise having a prospect just randomly sending out highlight tapes. Those usually end up in the garbage.
After about two weeks, you will want to follow up on the status of the tape. Even though it is early in the recruiting process, it is great to get as much feedback from college coaches as you can. They will speak with you about what you want to work on, what your strengths are, and anything else of interest. This is a great time to start building a relationship as well.
Some coaches may be so wowed by the tape that they may extend a scholarship offer. Most are likely going to recommend that you come to their camp this summer. If anything, I would expect the second response more than anything. Few sophomores have the highlight video needed to drop the jaws of college coaches and get an early offer.
When athletes are that good that early in their career, chances are they play other sports as well. Being the most gifted athletically will help push you towards other sports so make sure that the college coaches know that of your ability there. I wouldn’t necessarily include video of the other sports but make sure to add to your recruiting profile what you have done and what you have accomplished. Sometimes college coaches will want to see a football player on the basketball court and that allows the coach to see their athleticism and how they interact with teammates. It is always a huge help.
If you are unhappy with the attention you are receiving, then it is time to start looking into other options. This is step two in the five steps to a scholarship offer (CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL ARTICLE). What I basically recommend and scouring the schools on the Internet that may fit your criteria. You may be young as a freshman/sophomore but you should know if you want to stay close to home or travel away. What are you interested in studying? Think about these things when looking at these programs. Everyone would love to play for USC, LSU, and Florida but most prospects need to know that the education they receive is more important than the four or five years of football.
Once you have found those schools, now it is time to contact them and introduce yourself (CLICK HERE TO SEE STEP THREE). This is when you will be using your recruiting profile to send to college coaches. Tell them in the email that you are interested in their program because of these reasons. If you actually research the schools, it should be easy to come up with reasons why you are interested.
Those are the main steps that I would have if I was a talented sophomore/freshman player receiving early recruiting interest. You can setup a website with video highlights but it may be better to wait until you after your junior year to do that.