Going to College Archive

How Can Golf Recruits Maximize Visibility Among College Coaches?

Develop a proactive strategy to help you get recruited

College golf coaches typically recruit two or three new players to their teams from each graduating class. During the year, they are apt to receive calls, emails, letters, and text messages from hundreds of prospects while also communicating with players they have sought out as potential recruits for their programs. So how does a player, as one of those hundreds of prospects, develop a proactive strategy that helps his name stay on a coach’s short list of recruits for his graduating class?

The most obvious answer is to shoot very low scores in tournaments, make excellent grades in school, and achieve an above-average test score on the SAT or ACT. Realizing this may not happen exactly as planned or hoped for, prospects need to incorporate a proactive approach that affords them the best opportunity possible to get recruited.

Here are my suggestions:

COMMUNICATE FREQUENTLY – Prospects should send periodic golf and academic updates to coaches on their target list of schools and schedule occasional calls to check in and say hello. Start by knowing every junior player needs to prepare a golf and academic resume and send it early in the process of contacting a school. A resume also presents a polished image to a coach more than just an email.

NCAA Division I coaches can now trade text messages and/or calls at their discretion provided the prospect has reached September 1st of his/her junior year of high school. They can also send letters and emails at that time. So keeping coaches updated on your progress in school and on the golf course, as well as staying in tune with how the college’s current team is playing, will definitely prove beneficial to the prospect throughout the recruiting process

COMPETE IN TOURNAMENTS – Prospects should participate in top regional and national tournaments while in season and forward tournament schedules and results to coaches on their target list of schools. Coaches use tournament results as the primary way to identify recruits for their programs. If a prospect’s name appears on tournament results frequently, coaches are more inclined to remember his/her name and will be able to monitor his/her progress. An occasional bad round (or tournament) does not negatively affect a prospect’s recruiting chances, especially if it’s followed up with an improved performance. Coaches understand players will have both good and bad outings during the recruiting process.

ATTEND COLLEGE EVENTS – At least once during the fall season and once during the spring season, prospects should attend college tournaments to see firsthand what the competition level is like at various tournaments and how golf programs differ among themselves. This is a great experience and one that can help prospects gain visibility among college coaches. Coaches are not permitted to speak with prospects at these tournaments (unless it’s during their senior year); however, prospects can always talk to the players (and their parents) to learn more about college golf and the school they attend. Showing support for a team he/she is interested in ultimately playing for is a great way to let a coach know the prospect is serious about their golf program.

VISIT CAMPUSES – Visiting college campuses is the most important aspect of the recruiting process. It affords prospects and their families the opportunity to compare and contrast various schools and golf programs while also meeting the coach to learn more about his or her recruiting needs and coaching style. Coaches appreciate prospects who make the effort to visit their campus and show genuine interest in their school. The campus visits definitely increase visibility among coaches.

ASK REFERENCES TO CONTACT COACHES – College coaches rely on swing coaches, current or former golf team members, and friends or colleagues they know in the golf industry to recommend potential recruits for their teams. When prospects know someone who fits one of these categories, it is an excellent idea to ask the reference to contact a college coach and make the introduction. Considering how competitive recruiting has become, this is a wonderful way for a prospect to get his/her name in front of a coach and potentially increase their visibility. Current or former golf team members can greatly influence a coach’s recruiting decision.

I always encourage prospects to continue working hard in school and to play their best golf. We have to remember this is a marathon, and the journey should be enjoyed along the way!

Coach Brooks
Red Numbers Golf®

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