Communication is the key to success in most
endeavors. The college golf recruiting process
is no exception. I strongly encourage families
to visit as many college campuses as possible
and, when time permits, schedule a meeting with
the golf coach during each visit. This exercise
allows prospective student-athletes to see
firsthand what a university setting is really
like and, more importantly, gives them an
opportunity to meet college coaches and talk
about who they are and what they want out of
their college experience.
Often times coaches remind me that the most
important thing recruits can do during these
meetings is to speak for themselves. The
worst-case scenario is when a coach asks the
recruit a question and one of the parents speaks
up to answer it for them. While this may seem
fairly obvious, it occurs far too frequently.
My advice for parents is to meet the coach
briefly for five minutes at the beginning, then
leave to go make phone calls or have a cup of
coffee. This creates an environment where the
player will have to speak up, and in doing so
will have the opportunity to tell the coach more
about their golf and academic background as well
as career goals.
The same principle applies to phone calls,
e-mails, and off-campus recruiting contacts with
coaches. Each student-athlete needs to prepare
for these events, realizing these are great
opportunities to make a favorable impression and
to let coaches know you have a plan to succeed
at the next level.
What should you be prepared to accomplish
when communicating with coaches:
• Speak confidently – do you believe your
future is bright?
• Have a plan for success and know how to
communicate that plan to coaches.
• Ask coaches specific questions about their
• Anticipate questions they may ask you.
• Research the school and golf program before
you visit – good talking points.
• Wrap up the conversation with a summary of
the next recruiting steps.
Several other “Going to College” articles
(see archived section below) relate to this
topic and will help you formulate questions and
prepare answers for your upcoming conversations
with college coaches. It is always a good idea
to practice interviewing, possibly with your
high school coach, golf instructor, teacher, or
parent. The more you practice, the better
prepared you will be and the more confidently
you will speak to coaches. Remember, this is a
great opportunity to help college coaches
realize that you are someone they should recruit
to their golf program. This is also a valuable
life skill that can be applied to future job
Parents, continue to encourage your sons and
daughters to work hard, maintain a good
attitude, and have fun playing golf. Helping
them arrange campus visits is very important,
and once you get them there, try to take a step
back and let them speak up. I’m confident they
will do a great job!