Even though NCAA waives ACT / SAT requirement for 2021 student-athletes: still a good idea to take it.

Last week the NCAA announced waivers requiring ACT or SAT test scores for athletic eligibility. While many  student athletes celebrated a sigh of relief, despite the generous exception its time to start studying because it is still a good idea for student-athletes take the ACT or SAT. 

To quickly review the recently exemption, last week the NCAA decided Division I or II athletes will not be required to take a standardized test to meet NCAA initial-eligibility requirements. This decision said is to “help ensure students have a fair opportunity to meet the initial-eligibility standard.”   Why was this decision made?  

Student athletes, stay the course, continue moving forward with the plan to take the ACT or SAT college entry exam.  Photo by Ben Mullins on Unsplash

Again, the NCAA is concerned about “the continued disruption in secondary education due to the pandemic”. So, to meet eligibly requirements for athletic participation as well as to meet the criteria for academically eligibility for receive athletics scholarship, practice and completion in their first year the NCAA has made some concessions. Admission requirements are pretty low, 2.3 grade point average for Division 1 and 2.2 grade point average for Division II provided the NCAA approved 16 core courses are completed. But, lowering the standard and exempting student athletes from the standardized tests requirement leaves a few questions unanswered. 

In total, omitting the ACT or SAT requirement does not specifically address university admissions requirements.  Nor, does the exemption address how financial awards will be provided that usually are distributed as a result of high ACT or SAT scores? 

So, put down the party hat and grab a chair. Its time to start studying because what isn’t addressed by the exemption is exactly why student-athletes should move forward with the plan to take the ACT or SAT. 

First, to get into a college the university admission requirements must be met to get into that college. Undoubtably, student-athletes with a qualifiable ACT or SAT score are sure to have better opportunities for entry. Conversely, student athletes without standardized test scores are more likely not to  meet the requirements for colleges known for higher academic standards  Lets be realistic, schools know for selecting students with higher academics standards will continue to maintain this standards. Furthermore, student-athletes may be put at a disadvantage to gain entry into colleges known for higher academic standards. Consequently, student athletes aspiring to attend such schools will be expected to meet admission requirements or look elsewhere.  

Next, it is no secret that a college education is expensive. So, even without ACT or SAT scores, college tuition will still need to be paid.  What the NCAA generous waiver does not explain how to fill the financial void that is usually filled by financial awards provided by high standardized test scores?  Keep in mind, outside of D1 football, which is a full athletic and academic scholarship sport, schools in DIAA, DII, NAIA and DIII typically stack athletic scholarship with academic awards towards the cost of tuition. Somebody will have to pay and I don’t see colleges reducing the price of admission any time soon. 

The question remains, in the coming months, will athletes be presented other opportunities be made available to fill this void and to gain financial awards? Or will the burden be placed on solely on the athlete and their family? Without the funding provided by the SAT or ACT score how can student-athletes earn the extra financial awards that decrease tuition costs?

Bottom line for student athletes, stay the course, continue moving forward with the plan to take the ACT or SAT college entry exam.  

Source: NCAA Eligibility Center announces flexibility in initial eligibility for 2021-22 Changes address uncertainty caused by COVID-19 August 17, 2020 11:00amMichelle Brutlag Hosick

Extended Dead Period (Again!), Delayed Season, What’s Next?

Clearly, recruiting for the class of 2021 has taken on a much different timeline than years past.  As most student athletes are aware, the NCAA has extended the Dead Period to September 31st.  So what’s next? Lately, I’ve been getting questions about this so here are a few helpful pieces of information. 

While it is true that summer evaluations have been hamstrung, comparatively, this isn’t much different than in years past because as of August 1, the Dead Period/ Quiet Period starts. At this time, college coaches may not have face to face contact with athletes or their parents. It also means that college coaches cannot watch players compete UNLESS that student athlete is actually on the college campus for a camp or college visit.

Now, following the Dead Period is the Evaluation period from September 1- November 30. By definition the evaluation period permits college coaches to watch college-bound student-athletes compete. Ideally, this will allow for student-athletes to be evaluated during Fall season sports.  

Next comes early singing period staring in November 13 for sports other than football and December 18-20 for football. Keep in mind that around 5% of athletes from the 2021 recruiting class sign early. Typically, the majority of the recruiting class sign in the Spring. Further, recruits can sign until the August 1 cut off date. 

What does the extensions and delays mean for student-athlete seeking to get recruited? Student-athletes should focus on the things that they can control. Photo by Fitsum Admasu on Unsplash

Give the delays as a result of covid-19 for ACT and SAT tests coupled with cancellations of evaluation related camps it is likely for a significant number of the 2021 recruiting class to sign late.  

What does this mean for student-athlete seeking to get recruited? Student-athletes should focus on the things that they can control. First, the primary focus at this time is to keep preparing for the season. Stay in shape, keep up the workouts and stay hungry. Second, when school begins concentrate on getting the best grades possible. Don’t slack off or miss assignments. Take care of your academics and when the time comes your academics will take care of you. Third, it is important to be patient with the process. These contact periods are designed to slow down the process so that coaches have adequate time to scout prospects. Now that covid-19 has impacted the process it is even more important to be patine. Last, and perhaps most important during the delay, players can, and should, continue reaching out to coaches during all contact periods so that they stay on the radar. 

Extending the Recruiting Dead Period to July 31: What it means for student athletes.

Updated from article published on  

Last week, the NCAA extended the recruiting Dead period to July31 as a result of Covid-19  concerns. While the Dead Period may have mild repercussions,  it does not mean is that all recruiting has stopped. 

Many student athletes and parents should be aware what the extension means  and how it impacts recruiting. for their student athlete.  The goal of this blog is to answer those questions. 

To begin, the Dead Period extension means that college coaches and recruits are not permitted to have 

  • in person evaluations
  • official campus visits
  • in person contacts 

These are typical Dead Period restrictions.   However, like any other Dead Period throughout the recruiting calendar, the extension does not stop the recruiting process. 

Even during the extended Dead Period college coaches are still recruiting. Homepage screenshot: ESPN football recruiting May 19, 2020

So, let’s break down the Dead Period. At the core, the Dead Period is designed to give college coaches opportunity to digitally scout, research, and yes, recruit student athletes!  It’s somewhat of a respite for college coaches. The Dead Period provides coaches the time and space to recruit players without interruptions. 

The NCAA defines the Dead Period as, “a period a college coach may not have face-to-face contact with college-bound student-athletes or their parents, and may not watch student-athletes compete or visit their high schools. Coaches may write and telephone student-athletes or their parents during a dead period.”

Again, coaches may not have in person contact, campus visits or personal evaluations. They can, however, communicate with student-athletes and their parents. 

Clearly, the extension of the Dead Period does modify the typical recruiting process. However, it does not stop it altogether. 

So, my tip to the Class of 2021 recruits and beyond is to be more active and aggressive with their recruiting than ever before. Don’t get suckered into thinking that your recruiting is dead . Make sure it stays alive!

THOUGHTS ON ‘RONA & RECRUITING

Utter disappointment. Really, that’s a tremendous over statement. My heart goes out to the Spring athletes as well as those athletes who were unable to take their college visits. Many 2020’s have had their recruiting and signings delayed, while 2021’s also missed the opportunity to showcase their skills this season.  Many people ask me my thoughts on how ‘Rona (COVID-19) will impact recruiting in the near future, so here’s some of my thoughts.

Let me begin by stating that by nature I am an optimistic person. It’s in DNA to see things the potential in people and circumstances.  I’m holding hope that with cooperation, diligence, and compliance the spread of the virus will be stifled so that soon athletes can take to the field again.  

Without doubt, new recruiting opportunities are sure to surface to make up for lost time. So, even though college recruiting may have been slowed this spring, there will certainly be more recruiting opportunities to come.
Photo by Peter Feghali on Unsplash

Now, in regards to recruiting, it is likely that there will be little to no significant impact on the recruiting process. By that, I mean the recruiting process will continue to move forward in spite of the sequester. I am certain, at this very moment college coaches still recruiting athletes!  They may be doing this from their offices instead of the sidelines, but make no mistake, college coaches are recruiting athletes!

Next, recruiting this summer will certainly ramp up. Ben Franklin was noted to have said, “Out of adversity comes opportunity.” Without doubt, new recruiting opportunities are sure to surface to make up for lost time. So, even though college recruiting may have been slowed this spring, there will certainly be more recruiting opportunities to come. I anticipate an increase of showcases and camps this summer. Two reasons play into this. First, more camps and showcases will help replace some revenue lost as a result of the cancelled spring season. Second, additional camps and showcases will provide coaches the opportunity to have athletes come to them. This will allow coaches to evaluate more players in a short amount of time.  Early exposure to these coaches will be a tremendous help for prospects wanting invitations to these events.

Additionally, athletes who make the most of the self sequester will be those who continue communicating with college coaches, stay in shape, and keep up with their regular routine. When the opportunity returns for student-athletes to take the field once again it will be evident who stayed on course and made the most of the downtime. Consequently, those student-athletes who choose chill-time over training time will surely fall behind. 

Lastly, as of March 30 the NCAA announced that spring college athletes can be awarded an extra year of eligibility. However, the NCAA did not mandate additional scholarship money. The NCAA did loosed the roster limit for the 2021 season. But, scholarship money awarded to student-athletes will be at the desecration of the college athletic program.

This presents an option for the student-athletes who take advantage of this gift. It is likely that that they will have to pay out of pocket for an additional year of college so that then can play one more season of Spring sports. Outside of athletes from prominent Power 5 schools, I suspect that few Spring athletes will take advantage of this benevolent offer. For most college students, the cost of college tuition might just outweigh the benefit of one more year of competition. 

Finally, and most importantly, I want to wish you all wellness, safety and good health during this unprecedented season. 

Let them play?

Every student athlete is impacted by the Covid-19 virus. Weeks ago the severity of the spread was underestimated, thousands of people took to social media with posts of “Let them play!”  Little did we know that a pandemic was encroaching that would dole a knockout blow to all spring sports, at every level throughout our great country. 

As adults, and especially as adults who have considerable influence on our athletes, it is important to model behaviors that demonstrate responsibility, residence, and respect.
As adults, and especially as adults who have considerable influence on our athletes, it is important to model behaviors that demonstrate responsibility, residence, and respect. 

At least for most. 

Recently, on a return visit to the grocery, I drove by a neighborhood baseball part, noticing the movement of colorful little dots scattering the outfield. Not sure what I was observing, I drove into the parking lot astounded to see a little league baseball team practicing.  Enamored and  disappointed, I shook my head. 

Now, I’m all for sports. I love sports, for two decades I’ve coached sports and my children are also athletes. They are involved in team sports and when the sanctions were passed down each one of them lost  their season.  

But, I also know that sports in not more important than life. As adults, and especially as adults who have considerable influence on our athletes, it is important to model behaviors that demonstrate responsibility, residence, and respect. 

Responsibly that models to our athletes that certain risks are not more rewarding than wins.

Resilience that models to our athletes fortitude in face of adversity. 

Respect that models to our athletes that right choices always supersede selfish ignorance. 

In years to come, athletes of all ages will remember the season that was cut short. They will be pained by the possibility of what could have been. But, they will also remember those responsible for leading them. How they made touch decisions  in their best interest, so that in the years to come these same athletes and their children can take the field again. 

Tips to choose the right Camps, Showcases, and Combines

College camps, showcases, combines and now the ever present “Junior Days” are a necessary part of the recruiting process. Many offer the opportunity to compete against some of the top high school talent. Additionally, the experience at these events can be very valuable in the development of a young athlete. However, choosing the right event to attend can be a challenge.

For starters, relying solely on college showcases, camps and combines as the primary avenue to get recruited not a very sound strategy. Often the enormous number of camp attendees is not favorable for your exposure. In this case, too many athletes equals too few reps. Too few reps means not enough opportunity to showcase your talent. Also, typically college coaches already have developed recruiting lists of athletes they plan to watch at the camp so be cautions of camps expecting several hundred athletes. Additionally, before registering, athletes need to certain that the head coach or position coach will actually be at the event. Simple put, if the college coach wont’ be at the event, then it is impossible for him/her to see you compete, which means, there is a pretty good chance you will go unnoticed. It also means you wasted a lot of money for zero exposure.

If the college coach wont’ be at the event, then it is impossible for him/her to see you compete, which means, there is a pretty good chance you will go unnoticed. Photo by Jeffrey F Lin on Unsplash

Instead, heres a winning recruiting strategy for using camps, combines and showcases. First, do some research to make sure college coaches form the schools you feel are realistically a good fit. Once you decide on a event, make sure you are prepared for the event. Next, utilize good interactive communication before the event. This is a good opportunity to provide coaches with your recruiting profile along with any video highlights you may have. (PrepStar athletes can do this in a few clicks- message me if you need to know how). Finally, before the event, prepare a few questions to ask about the college or the athletic program.

Getting lots of camp invites? Have questions about which are legit? Need help?  Contact me to set up a time to talk (get free advise!) or use the comment section below.

High Performing Athletes- 6 common characteristics

At the start of the new year, I began as series focused on 6 major characteristics of high performing athletes. Often, I am asked about the what it takes for an athlete to reach a a high performance level beyond natural ability. So, after making a long list, researching top athletes, and persistent review I came up with 6 common characteristics. Obviously, these six characteristics is not an exhaustive list, however, I am certain that some form of these characteristics are prevalent in the life, mind and practices of anyone that is considered to be a high performing athletes. 

Any athlete who desires to perform at the highest level must exercise a extra-ordinary amount of disciple. (Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash)


The summary of the 6 characteristics are:

  1.  High performing athletes are able to clarify the vision and path to reach their goals. 
  2. High performance athletes measure results repeatedly.  They do this to discover areas of progress as well as weaknesses.
  3. High-performing athletes take full responsibility. They take complete ownership of their actions, their plans, and their purpose.
  4. High performing athletes possess “want to”. They willfully want to practice and put in the extra reps. This characteristic is often partnered with words like passion, desire, drive and determination. 
  5. High performing athletes take care of their body, mind and spirit. They plan and execute good self care habits and have the discipline to maintain those habits. 
  6. High performing athletes seek out great coaching. They intentionally look for and listen to coaches who  can help them  break through to the next level. 

Now that you are aware of these six characteristics, the next question to consider is what is the common denominator ties them together?  In my opinion that denominator is discipline. Any athlete who desires to perform at the highest level must exercise a extra-ordinary amount of disciple. Almost to a level that seems obsessive when compared to those around him/her. High performing athletes know that to make their goals into reality uncompromising discipline is a must.  

HIGH PERFORMING ATHLETES: COMMON CHARACTERISTICS- “HAVE TO”

This week I continue to outline major characteristics of high performing athletes (HPAs). For this week, the  characteristics  is one of those easily identifiable traits. It’s one that is so obvious that it makes other athletes (and often their parents) envious. I would further go on to say that this characteristic is one that can be learned. Its is like a match struck and put to a fire, smoldering then suddenly bursting into flame. 

This week I want to outline a characteristic in high performing athletes that is best described as “want to”. This characteristic is often partnered with words like passion, desire, drive and determination.  HPAs with this characteristic understand that “want to” means willing desire. It’s as if the putting in the work is a privilege and the pain of pushing the limits is actually enjoyable. In contrast, to “want to” is “have to”.  Athletes who “have to” require an amount of compromise and external motivation to put in the work. 

Photo by Ruben Leija on Unsplash

High performing athletes with “want to” are uncompromising. They put in the time for work outs. The do it because they love it, not because coach says to, or because their parents say so.  Instead, HPA’s with “want to”  put in the work because of the passion for the game. Further, they love to compete against others and against their personal personal records.    HPAs with “want to”  don’t have to be dragged out of bed. And they don’t have to rely on motivational hype to get started. No, instead they are self-motivated and self-driven. 

HPA’s with “want to” passion also realize that the externals of the game matter. The externals of the game make a difference so they put in the work in the gym, in training, in practice, outside of practice and in the film room. In their free time, they study the game to improve their sport IQ. With a critical eye, HPAs study themselves looking to evaluate and critique personal preparation, practice and performance. They also pay attention to what they eat, how they sleep, and who they hang out with.  Because HPAs with “want to “ recognizes that all of these things impact passion and performance. 

But as mentioned earlier, the “want to” characteristic can be learn. It is not exclusive only for a small group. No, with encouragement, confidence and focus new habits and routines can be develop that change “have to” athletes into “want to” high performing athletes.

High Performing Athletes: common characteristics- Responsibility

What does it take to be at the top of your game? Have you ever wondered what is the daily regime for those capable of performing at high level consistently. To kick off 2020 I want to outline some of the characteristics  of high performing athletes (HPAs). After all, the name of this blog has the words Elite Athletes, and assuming most of the audience are athletes, why not share helpful tips for elite athletes seeking strategies to improve. 

Photo by Freddie Collins on Unsplash


This week, the topic is responsibility. In a culture where blame is the game, people who take personal responsibility for their actions are rare. Sadly, its easier to blame someone else than to own up to our own mistakes. But this is not how HPA’s work. 


Instead, high-performing athletes take full responsibility. They would never let someone take the blame. HPAs take complete ownership of their actions, their plans and their purpose. High performing athletes want the ball in their hand when the clock is ticking down.  


So, HPAs assume full responsibly by being fully accountable. It means that no matter what the outcome, the only person to blame is yourself.  In no situation will excuses be acceptable! High performing athletes do not sit around hoping to rise to success on the back of someone else. No, high performing athletes understand that in every situation they are both 100% responsible and 100% accountable. 

High Performing Athletes: common characteristics

Helping athletes perform at the highest level possible is what Elite Athletes Recruiting is all about.  So, to kick off  2020 I will be sharing about several common characteristics that I have found in high performing athletes (HPA).


This year I want to help my readers to perform at the highest level possible in 2020. 
Last week, I outlined how high performing athletes (HPA) are able to clarify the vision and path to reach their goals. 

This week I want to impress a second common characteristic. High performance athletes measure results repeatedly.  They do this to discover areas of progress as well as weaknesses. Because, results can only become obvious over a period of time it is necessary to make it a priority to measure results. 

For most of us progressing towards our goals takes time. Days, months, years. Rarely, does success happen overnight. Thats why it is important to measure or track progress. The danger of not keep measurements is discouragement. Unless you are paying close attention, incremental progress can be easily overlooked. Likewise, neglecting to measure results can lead to plateaus where not progress is being made whatsoever. 

In a tangible way, this is the reason why stats are so important in sports. It is also the reason why score is kept in athletic competitions.  Stats and scores highlight who wins and who loses.

So to avoid stagnation, high performance athletes measure the results of both successes and failure so that they can form new strategies to help them reach new levels of achievement.
What areas of your athletic performance, business, or physical health have you set goals for in 2020?  How do you intent to measure measure progress to assure that you reach those goal