This summer my wife and I will mark our 18th year of beginning together (married for 16 years). Believe it or not, however, when I first met my wife she did not immediately start dating me. It’s hard to imagine, I know, but we went through several months of courtship before we committed to dating exclusively. Dating and recruiting are a lot alike. There is always a period of time that it takes for a coach and player to get to know one another before making a formal commitment to spend the next 4 years together.
So, how does dating relate to recruiting? I’ve outline three steps to communication to grow a solid player/coach recruiting relationship. During that time lots of communication should happen to grow the relationship. Take note, because there are several similarities in process of getting to know the person you’re going to be committed to for the next 4 years.
The first step is to get to know one another. Whether its text, email, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook or SnapChat athletes and coaches need to communicate with one another. Don’t be timid! Healthy relationships grow out of quality conversations. Its okay to be forward, often a coach expresses his/her interests first starting the recruiting communication process by contacting an athlete, viewing their profile or sending an athlete (or family) written correspondence.
The second step is to ask questions. You should ask questions to get the information you are looking for. Keep in mind that you are interviewing a coach, just as much as the coach is interviewing you. Your decision to accept a scholarship offer is contingent on the answers to your questions. Also, keep in mind, coaches solidify relationships by making scholarship offers to players they are comfortable with and confident in.
The third step is to schedule a meeting. Eventually the time will come to decide whether or not to take the relationship to the next level. Real dates happen face to face, not via technology, so its necessary that a time to meet is scheduled. This can be a campus visit, camp, or meeting at your school/home. Point is the communication you’ve had with the coach will determine the chemistry (or lack of) at the face to face meeting.
Lastly, always keep in mind that every relationship takes time. So my advice to you is to give yourself plenty of time to start and grow that relationship. This is a vital because we are well aware that relationships that happen in a hurry often end in a hurry. If you want the relationship between you and your coach to last, you need to invest the time necessary to assure that it will last.
Coach Mike Woosley is a National Scouting Director at CSA-PrepStar. As a professional collegiate sports scout Mike works with qualified next level student-athletes to find the right college athletic and academic fit. Comments and questions are always welcome.