Ten things to help yourself during the football recruiting process

It is interesting to see that one of the most popular articles of this site was Ten Things To Do To Not Get Recruited By College Coaches.  While the article was written in May, I still feel strongly about all ten and they are definitely things that you need to avoid.  Instead of focusing on the negative in this article, I decided to write about ten things to positively differentiate yourself in the football recruiting process.  Many of these apply to other sports but a few are football specific.  They are in no particular order but should be areas to consider when going through the recruiting process. 

1.) Excel at camps and combines
A fantastic time for athletes to play their best is at camps and combines (By this I mean major camps and combines, no small ones where few people are there).  Your performance will no doubt help you in the eyes of college coaches.  So if you have an injury, suck it up because this is a vital time during the football recruiting process. 

2.) Have a 4.0 GPA
While grades will not get you a scholarship for sports, coaches love to see athletes with a strong performance in academics.  They love the fact that they may be getting a recruit who they are not going to have to worry about in the classroom.  That just helps the athletes and the coach avoid the awkward talks of trying to raise their grades.  The higher the GPA, the better you look in their eyes.  

3.) Put together a quality highlight video
While doing well at camps are great, a highlight video is important because it shows that you can do it over the course of the season.  As always, let me stress that you put a quality highlight video together.  If you go the cheap route and get something that doesn’t look good, it is going to be tough in getting a scholarship.

4.) Score high on your ACT/SAT
If you are unable to get that Division I-A scholarship that you dream for, you are going to have to look into your backup options.  And at all levels, the better academics you have, the less student loans you will leave college with.  So if you have taken these tests, unless you got perfect, retake them and try to get better.  In the end, you can submit your highest overall score. 

5.) Be the hardest worker on your team
There are many athletes who can get away with not working hard at the high school level.  But that mentality catches up with them while in college.  The very best in the world are those who have God given talent and are the hardest workers.  That is exactly how Michael Jordan became the player he was with the Bulls. 

6.) Avoid off the field trouble
Coaches hate to deal with dumb 18 to 23 year olds getting in trouble off the field.  It could be in school or with the police.  The moral of the story is to do what you can to avoid it.  You have the rest of your life to drink alcohol so just wait a few years.  It may not be all that popular but it will help you in the long run.  

7.) Listen and respect to all of your coaches and teachers
College coaches will do whatever they can to talk to people around your school to get a better feel for the person that you are.  If you are a good student and a respectable young man, then your coaches and teachers will think the world of you.  And when the college coaches ask them questions, they will tell them just that. 

8.) Excel in multiple sports
College coaches love to see football players who standout in track, basketball, or wrestling.  Many of the skills displayed in those sports carry over and above everything else, the athletes know how to compete in different venues.  These are a big benefit for football players and may be a good reason not to specialize. 

9.) Listen to feedback from coaches and improve on your weaknesses
If you attend camps and get an honest evaluation, the college coaches will tell you what areas they think you need to work on.  They will also do the same with your recruiting highlight video.  When they tell you these things, take note and really think about them.  Find out what you can do about improving these areas and show them on senior video that you are much stronger in those weak areas.  Then the coaches will know how serious you are about recruiting. 

10.) Be a role model in your community
While character may not be the first thing that college coaches recruit, it is important for athletes.  You need to realize that as a recruited athlete, people will look up to you in the community.  With that in mind, it may help you avoid #6 on the list and become a better person overall. 

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