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.
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.