The Holidays – Tis’ the Season for Recruiting

live free
Now that Thanksgiving is over, and in-spite of the early departments store displays in October, we can safely say that the holidays are officially here. In no time at all it will be Christmas and a New Year will be upon us.  For 2018 student-athletes hoping to get recruited a major season of recruiting is also here and soon so will Signing Day.
Since, most students have a little more time available over the holidays  I want to ensure them have a happy and merry recruiting season so I put together a short list for those serious about getting recruited.
Every year student athletes are surprised to find no offers under the tree but so I suggest making sure these things are on your list…and check it twice.
Here are a few items that should be on your list.
  1. Highlight or skills video. Make sure have good, quality, clear footage.
  2. Update stats or metrics to the most recent measurements as possible.
  3. Purge social media of inappropriate posts. When in doubt, just delete it.
  4. Role-play and practice the conversation you hope to have with a college coach.
  5. Plan campus visits to colleges highest on your list.
  6. Schedule and study for the ACT/SAT college entry exams.
Have questions? Need help? Get a FREE recruiting consultation on any of the items on this list by just clicking here or leave a comment below.
Or, if a few hours of  research is something you want to do with your extra holiday time, you’ll be able to find plenty of tips and information online to help you.
My best to you this holiday recruiting season.
Coach Mike

What is an official visit?

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Since many athlete are being offered opportunities to visit campuses I thought it good to share about official visits. First, and foremost, coaches frequently reserve official visits to make offers. However, the official visit often follows one or more unofficial visits.

Recruiting is a process. So, don’t be discouraged if a coach does not offer an official visit right away.  That is part of the process. My advice is that too many student-athletes and parents make negative assumptions so keep a clear mind and a positive attitude.  Relax, just keep in mind that process takes time, and try to enjoy the process.

Next, an official visit is any visit to a college campus by a college-bound student-athlete or his or her parents that is paid for by the college. Conversely, campus visits paid for by college-bound student-athletes or their parents is an unofficial visit.

Most importantly, only Senior student-athletes are permitted official visits! During the Senior year student-athletes are allowed up to 5 official visits for D1 and D2 schools. However, only 1 official visit per school is allowed. For D3 and NAIA schools there are no limit to official visits a student-athlete can take. However, similar to D1 and D2 regulations, only 1 official visit per school is allowed.

Leave questions about official visits in the comments section below. Or feel free to message me on Twitter @michaelwoosley or email questions to me at

Finally, I would love to hear from athletes attending official or unofficial visits. Tag me @michaelwoosley with any posts. I will gladly share your good news.




Coach Mike oversees the the recruiting of talented next-level athletes to develop a recruiting strategy to get seen, scouted and recruited. A former college athlete himself, Mike now coaches families through the academic, athletic and financial aspects of college recruiting.  



Highlight and skills videos are a huge part of the recruiting process.


Recruiting in the digital age it is understood that highlight and skills video are a huge part of the process. Video has made it convenient for college coaches to recruiting players on a national level from the comfort of their offices. I have watched thousands of recruiting videos. Some are so impressive that I actually take the time to watch it again. Others, well, they have been so mediocre that I am left shaking my head in disbelief.

mean the difference between getting recruited and not getting recruited, scholarship money or paying thousands of dollars for college tuition.

In this short post I put together a few ideas that athletes can use when assembling their highlight video. It could mean the difference between getting recruited and not getting recruited, scholarship money or paying thousands of dollars for college tuition.

Also, to be of help to that student athlete looking for an advantage I will gladly take a look at the highlight video that is emailed to me ( or sent by Twitter (@michaelwoosley).

Basically, the highlight or skills video is so crucial that even for the most talented athletes a solid well made recruiting video will have a positive impact Just as a poorly assembled recruiting video will have a negative impact. So here are 5 tips for assembling a solid recruiting video.

  1. Always make sure the video is appropriately timed. Typically, a good video is between 4 and 5 minutes long. Though you may have 20 minutes of season highlights, pick the best footage. College coaches have limited time to view video so impress them with the best.
  2. Next, make sure that your best plays are in the first 60 seconds. Think about it like how social media is viewed. If a picture or post catches your attention then your more likely to click to find out more. The opposite is also true. If the post doesn’t hold your attention then you move on to the next.
  3. Then make sure to highlight position specific skills. For example, in football,  running backs are designed to get in the end zone and out-run defenders. Running backs then should highlight touchdown runs and speed separation. Defensive lineman, are supposed to wreak havoc at the line of scrimmage and in the opponents backfield so show sacks and quarterback hurries.
  4. Most importantly, highlight videos need to be highlights of you. The footage should feature you, not other players. I’ve heard stories of coaches finding an recruit while viewing the footage of a teammate. It happens often.
  5. Lastly, know the difference between a clean hit and a cheap shot. Coaches want aggressive players not dirty players.  Because cheap shots cause penalties, penalties cost yardage, and lost yards can ultimately be the difference in winning or losing a game. Remember this hit?

Now that you have a few helpful tips go make an impressive recruiting video.

In addition to viewing any recruiting videos emailed to me or sent by Twitter (@michaelwoosley) I will also provide a video assessment of the recruiting video for a small fee. Email or tweet me to find out how to get your video assessed and evaluated at( or  by Twitter (@michaelwoosley).

What is an official college visit?

Since many athlete are being offered opportunities to visit campuses I thought it good to repost from last month.  On many occasions coaches reserve official visits to make offers, especially during senior year. Every college coach has her or his own way of recruiting athletes so be mindful that an invitation for an official visit doesn’t necessarily mean an offer will  be given. Furthermore, the official visits tends to follow one or more unofficial visits.


By definition, an official visit is any visit to a college campus by a college-bound student-athlete and his or her parents that is paid for by the college. Conversely, visits paid for by college-bound student-athletes or their parents are unofficial visits.

Most importantly, only Senior student-athletes are permitted official visits.  Many parents are mistaken on this point. So it is important to keep this in mind when talking with college coaches. Additionally, during the Senior year student athletes are permitted up to 5 official visits for D1 and D2 schools. However, only 1 official visit per school is allowed. For D3 and NAIA schools there are no limit to official visits.

Finally, I would love to hear from athletes attending official or unofficial visits. Also, if you need help preparing for your official or unofficial visit leave a comment below or send me an email at

I’ll help you answer any questions you may have.

4-C’s toward successful recruiting process

College Football ScholarshipsGuest blogger
Jeff Duva- Founder, PrepStar Recruiting

Every year more than one million student athletes participate in high school football. Many of these young athletes are hopeful of one day receiving a college football scholarship!

Receiving an athletic scholarship and participating in the exciting world of college football is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The competition is fierce among high school athletes as tens of thousands of student athletes are vying for a limited number of scholarship opportunities on the collegiate level.

Annually, there are approximately 12,000 new opportunities for entering college freshmen to make it onto a 4-year or 2-year college roster. That means less than 5% of graduating high school senior football players will make it to the next level.

Division I is the highest level of college football and are comprised of schools that include the major collegiate powers in the U.S. To be eligible as an NCAA D-1 football program the university must sponsor a minimum of 14 different NCAA championship sports. D-I schools include the major collegiate athletic powers, with larger budgets, more elaborate facilities, and more athletic scholarships than Divisions II and III as well as many smaller schools committed to the highest level of intercollegiate competition.

In 1978 Division I was subdivided into Division I-A and Division I-AA. In 2006, Division I-A and I-AA were renamed FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) and FCS (Football Championship Subdivision).

FBS teams are allowed a maximum of 85 players receiving athletically-based aid per year, with each player allowed to receive up to a full scholarship; FCS teams have the same 85-player limit as FBS teams, but are only allowed to give aid equivalent to 63 full scholarships. FCS teams are allowed to award partial scholarships, a practice technically allowed but essentially never used at the FBS level. FBS teams also have to meet minimum attendance requirements (average 15,000 people in actual or paid attendance per home game), while FCS teams do not need to meet minimum attendance requirements.

In total, there are 252 teams that comprise FBS (128) and FCS (124) football programs. Division II schools that participate in college football total 171 and Division III schools total 237. There are another 75 college football programs on the NAIA level.

FBS football programs may have a total scholarship limit if 85. For FCS programs the number is 63. For Division II the number is 36.

Division III programs do not offer athletic scholarship but may offer financial aid based on academic merit and financial need basis. NAIA schools may offer a total of 24 full-ride scholarship per team and these scholarship may be divided up between multiple players in order to meet the 24 scholarship total.

If your goal is to play college football, win an athletic scholarship and receive a rewarding college degree, then it is of vital importance that you create a winning game plan to make this dream a reality! Here are some steps you need to be taking during your high school career:

The first and foremost area of importance is academics. Without the proper academic qualifications you will not be recruited for a college football scholarship. Here is a quick review of Division I Academic Standards…

To be eligible to practice, compete and receive athletics scholarships in your first full-time year at a Division I school, you must graduate from high school and meet ALL the following requirements:

1. Complete a total of 16 NCAA core courses in the following areas:

  • 4 years of English.
  • 3 years of math (Algebra 1 or higher).
  • 2 years of natural/physical science (including one year of lab science if offered).
  • 2 years of social science.
  • 1 additional year of English, math or natural/physical science.
  • 4 additional years of English, math, natural/physical science, social science, foreign language, comparative religion or philosophy.

2. Complete 10 of your 16 core courses, including seven in English, math or natural/physical science, before the start of your seventh semester. Once you begin your seventh semester, you must have more than 10 core courses completed to be able to repeat or replace any of the 10 courses used to meet the 10/7 requirement. Students whose academic credentials are solely international (including Canada) are not required to meet the 10/7 requirement.

3. Earn an SAT combined score or ACT sum score that matches your core-course GPA (minimum 2.300) on the Division I sliding scale. SAT scores earned on or after March 2016 will be evaluated based on concordance tables established by the College Board.

In one of our earlier blogs we talked about steps you need to take to receive an athletic scholarship for college. Here is a quick review of our 4-C’s toward success…

  • Character
  • Courage
  • Commitment
  • Championship Mindset

CHARACTER: Make sure you maintain the highest level of CHARACTER and citizenship at all times, not just when people are watching.

COURAGE: Don’t be a crowd follower but instead be a leader with impeccable character and the COURAGE when you have to make the hard decision amongst your peers when you know it is the right decision for you!

COMMITMENT: To be successful in anything you do in life you will need to have the proper COMMITMENT and determination to succeed at what you are doing. Most great athletes have an unwavering commitment and determination to go past fear and doubt, propelling you toward your determined goal.

CHAMPIONSHIP: This leads us into having a CHAMPIONSHIP mindset. Champions aren’t born they are made! Set your goals high and if you put into action your action the proper commitment, courage and character you will be well on your way to high school and collegiate success.

Now that you have created your game plan for the next-level, there is one vital and necessary step you need to take to ensure you reach your college goals of obtaining an athletic scholarship. That step is EXPOSURE! Many great and highly qualified and deserving student-athletes go unnoticed in the recruiting process every year due to a lack of exposure. With the digital age upon us, social media outlets, online profiles, videos and much more, are a necessary part of the recruiting game.

There are companies in the world hyper space that will offer student-athletes web platforms to self promote themselves to college coaches nationwide. These types of services can be helpful but more times than not college coaches find these types of services that you may be familiar with, cluttered with non-prospects who have no chance of playing beyond the high school level. Many of these sites even promote themselves are being the best because they are the biggest, with tens of thousands of athlete profiles.

PrepStar offers a much different solution than these other companies by focusing on qualified, verified next-level prospects. Because PrepStar works with a select group of no more than 360 athletes per year, we can choose the very best that have the academic and athletic qualifications for college. As a result of this much more refined and “rifle” approach to college recruiting, PrepStar delivers the result families are looking for by helping their athletes reach their college goals. If you would like to see if you qualify as an elite PrepStar 360 prospect, please take a moment of your time to create your athletic resume by clicking on the link below.

After we receive your personal information you will be contacted by a PrepStar Scouting Coordinator to setup a personal scholarship evaluation with one of our national Scouting Directors!

Create My Athletic Profile

2018 Early NLI Signing Dates 

The early National Letter of Intent signing day for 2018 commits in sport other than football is November 8-15. During this time early committed athletes can sign the formal agreement with the (NCAA or NAIA) university they have chosen to play for the 2018-19 season.  For those signing early, please text or tweet a picture of your signing ceremony to @MichaelWoosley.

Typically, the November NLI signing day is for athletes in Fall sports except football. In contrast the February and April signing dates are for athletes participating in Winter and Spring sports respectively.

Additionally, National letter of intent is a a binding contract between student athlete and university that guarantees academic and athletic aid so be sure all terms of the offer are agreeable upon signing.

There are a few interesting notes about NLI’s to know.

  • NLI’s can be signed without first getting admission to a college
  • Only 1 NLI can be signed within 1 academic year
  • NLI must include the NCAA ID. The NCAA ID
    will be available to the prospective studentathlete
    once registered with the NCAA
    Eligibility Center
  • NLI may not be signed prior to the signing dates for the applicable sport.
  • NLI must include a parent or legal guardian
    signature if the prospective student-athlete is
    under the age of 21.
  • Football (Early NLI Period) is December 20 – 22, 2017 (Division I)
  • A prospective student-athlete signs with an institution. If the coach leaves, the NLI signee is still bound by the provisions of the NLI.
  • Completing a playing season does not fulfill the NLI obligation. The entire academic year at the signing institution must be completed.
  • The NLI may be delivered by express mail, regular mail, email, fax, mobile applications or any other electronic means. Coaches and university reps can only be present if the signing takes place on the college campus.

More information and some informational videos can be found at the NLI website.

Softball Showcase Evaluations end in November 

Knowing your recruiting calendar can help you plan exposure opportunities to compete in from of college coaches. These events make up the Evaluation Period (see graphic below.

In October, the new changes to the D1 softball recruiting calendar really make an impact as the four showcase weekends allowed by the NCAA begin on the 14th.

  • October 14-15, 2017
  • October 21-22, 2017
  • October, 28-29, 2017
  • November 4-5, 2017
  • November, 11-12, 2017
  • November 18-19, 2017