Play ball! (soon)

Photo by Pierre-Etienne Vachon on Unsplash

Now that the powers that be are deciding to loosen the stay-at-home restrictions soon practices and games will resume. This is very exciting news. Recently, many of my conversations with coaches and athletes suggest that teams are starting to come together at the end of June and first week of July.  However, there will definitely be some modifications.

Here’s what we know. 

Sport will look like sport but it will be different 

  • there will be weird restrictions and over cautious regulations (no spiting in baseball????) 
  • there will be fewer fans in the stands

What we can be sure of 

  • sports are back
  • athletes will compete
  • recruting will continue to move forward

What will soon be known 

  • those that put in the work will succeed
  • those that didn’t will fail
  • those that stopped their recruiting will surely be behind.

As I have written before, high performing athletes have no off season. Their goals won’t allow them to take time off. Instead, those goals are like a magnet drawing them in. 

But for those who decided to slack off, or who were convinced that recruiting wasn’t happing during the Dead Period, here are a few things to do immediately. 

  1. Get off your a*s and get to work! There is nothing more to say about that . 
  2. Get some help, right away. Find someone who has the contacts necessary to get your name out there.  Exposure is key to the recruiting game. Get it right away.
  3. Invest in yourself. It will cost you time, sweat, and money to get recruited. Nothing worthwhile is free but things that are worthwhile come at a cost.  Truthfully, it will cost you now or cost you in the future, so you can invest in yourself now or pay the price in the future.

Extending the Recruiting Dead Period; what it means for student-athletes

Last week, the NCAA extended the recruiting Dead period to June 30 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!

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2 Weeks in December

The high school football season for the most part is over. Except for a limited few states the final whistle has blown, gear returned, and final stats recorded. When it seem like its all finished, football recruiting, however, is just getting started.  Especially in these first two weeks in December the contact period resumes. But, only for two weeks. 

During the December contact period it is permissible for authorized athletic department staff member to have in person, off campus contacts with prospective student athletes. 

So, athletes, what can  can you do to improve your recruiting situation during these two weeks? 

  1. Get your highlight reel looking tight. By now you should have a full season highlight reel as well as a midseason highlight reel up on your Hudl page. 
  2. Broaden your reach with coaches you want to contact. Use more than one medium to contact coaches. Don’t just rely on twitter to blast out your Hudl link. Rely on email and text. And, if you’re brave enough, go old school by making a phone call. 
  3. Stay focused! Lots of recruiting happens at this time of year. Keep in mind that the contact period is only open for 2 weeks, then its back to the quiet period until January. So be patient with the process. 

Let me know how recruiting is going for you. Have questions about the recruiting process? Comment below or contact me on twitter or instagram (@michaelwoosley). I’m glad to help. 

Recruiting contact periods during the high school football season

Many high school football teams will take the field towards the latter part of this week to compete in their season opener. Along with the excitement of the lights, crowds and cheers comes the hopes of college recruting. In the previous two article  we looked at the three contact periods that take place within the football season. This article is to outline the dead period and provide some useful tips improving recruiting opportunities throughout the season. 

By definition during a dead 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.

Not to be mistaken for the quiet period, the dead period does leave open the doors for communication. However, there is no room for coaches to evaluate players by watching games in person or visiting high school campuses. 

Not to be mistaken for the quiet period, the dead period does leave open the doors for communication.

This rule seems to handcuff athlete exposure. So how can athletes get exposure during the quiet period?  First, athletes should rely of video. They can improve exposure opportunities by keeping game video resources up to date with recent game film. Additionally, athletes can contact coaches by email and social media but should do so not expecting a return reply.  Athletes can also use a credible, reputable recruiting resource to keep them on the radar.  These groups, like PrepStar, act as a go between. For instance, PrepStar provides college coaches with your updated athletic, academic and video highlights throughout your high school career, ensuring you that college coaches always have access to your latest and most updated information.

To conclude this outline of the three contact periods that take place during the high school season I want to wish a success season to all high school football players. Hopefully, the details provided have been helpful and created some new ideas for communicating with college coaches during the season. If you need help, I’m glad to share tips or advice to help you along in the process. Simply, text the word GAMEPLAN to 480-605-4050.  I’m glad to talk with you about your recruiting concerns and give you some helpful suggestions.