Well, we’ve cruised past Labor Day, and it’s almost October. Fall is here, summer is over, and now it’s back to the grind. Over the past few weeks, I’ve had the opportunity to talk to many college coaches at the Division 1, 2 and 3 levels about our players and recruiting in general. My goal is to make sure everyone in our program goes on to play college lacrosse if that is what they want, I continue to learn about the recruiting process and the best tactics our players and parents can use to help them gain more exposure and help them get to the next level.
Here are some things parents and players need to have as they enter the recruiting process:
Do you know someone who has played at a high level? Do you know someone who has coached at a high level? These are the people who are going to have more credibility when talking to college coaches because the coaches will respect their opinion. You need a credible advocate who has credibility in lacrosse and has earned the respect of college coaches by virtue of their background and experience. Those are the kinds of people you want to have in your corner because coaches will listen to them.
Whoever is advocating for you needs to have a great network. Is that person able to pick up the phone and call the coach at the school you’re interested in? Does this person have the contacts and cell phone numbers of these coaches you are trying to reach out to? Can they get you on the phone with these coaches and can they get you in front of these coaches? Working with someone who has the contacts and network is vital for your son as he strives to get to the next level.
Proper Highlight Film:
Your advocate needs to make sure your film is in the proper order (the clips) to ensure you make the best impression and stand out to college coaches. A great highlight film can immediately spark a coach’s interest and help push an offer quicker. This is particularly important in this era of Covid-19.
Examples of Great Highlight Film:
- Goalie: Explosive first step, no rebounds, gets the ball out of his stick quickly after a save, great communication and leadership qualities
- Defense: Show great one-on-one defense at GLE against high level competition, display lateral movement and footwork, show sliding and recovery
- LSM: Show strength off the wings of face-offs and offensive ability with the ball, show taking the ball away from guys in between the restraining lines
- Face-Off: Face-off standing up, create offense off the face-off, push the ball and handle the ball off a face-off, show toughness and ability to pick up ground balls Midfield: Ability to beat your guy and create offense when dodging, vision/IQ, defense and clearing. Two-way players are so important in this game
- Attack: Dodging ability and quick change of direction, confidence and no fear of getting hit, vision, ride
If You Get an Offer (What now??):
Offers are not easy to come by. If you get an offer from a NESCAC school and decide to tell the coach, “I need to wait until the end of the summer to make my decision,” don’t expect the spot to still be there. NESCAC and D1 schools are usually done with their classes by September 1 of your senior year. Ideally it would be great to see the school first and meet the coaches, but in this era of Covid-19, that’s even more difficult because most schools aren’t allowing visitors on campus. Take the virtual tour of campus and set up a Zoom call with the coaches. Right now, while not ideal, it’s the best we can do.
Expecting Duke, Notre Dame, and Virginia all to contact you at the start of recruiting season is probably setting yourself up for disappointment. Talk with your advocate. Talk with the coach or program director who is representing you. They can be honest and direct with you and let you know who is probably going to reach out to you at the start of recruiting.
Understand Everyone’s Process is Different:
Don’t worry what you hear about other guys and how their recruiting process is going. Worry only about yourself and what is happening in your process. Everyone’s path is different. Everyone’s goals are different. Focus on yourself, your goals, and what you’re doing to accomplish those goals.
I am an open book. Please feel free to reach out to me anytime if you ever have any questions about recruiting.