Talking to college coaches and setting up visits can seem overwhelming. Break it down into an action plan with simple steps, and it’s easy. Read on to learn how to set up a visit.
1. You’ve been researching schools that you’re interested in and you’re a good athletic and academic fit for – right? If you haven’t, and you are serious about playing college athletics, do it by the end of the day. This is absolutely crucial whether you’re planning a spring visit or not. All the other steps won’t do much good unless you’ve done this. Check recruiting guidelines for your sport here and make sure your GPA and test scores are at least close to what the school typically looks for.
2. Make sure any schools you want to visit have need at your position for your grad year. If you’re an NCSA Verified Athlete, check our coach requests to see what they’re looking for – you might see something like, “looking for women’s 400m runners with 3.0 GPA or better for 2014,” or “5’ 10”+ 1B wanted for 2013.” In your RMS, you’ll be able to see all the requests from coaches at schools where you’re a good fit. If you’re not a verified, you can look at rosters for schools you are interested in and see if players in your position or event
3. Decide if your visit will be official or unofficial (click here to learn about the difference). Most visits will be unofficial – the only athletes taking official visits will be seniors who already have serious interest from coaches at schools they want to attend.
4. Select the schools where you want to visit and reach out to the coaches there. Tell them you are interested in their program and ask if they would like to see your highlight video. If you’re a good fit, seeing you play will spark their interest right away. If you’re not a good fit, better for the coach to find out right away. That way, neither of you spends time on recruitment for a school that is not a good choice for you.
5. If the coach is interested in you, tell them that you would like to set up an unofficial game day visit (or, for some well-positioned seniors, an official visit). Even on an unofficial visit, the school can give you tickets to a sporting event – you’ll want tickets to your sport, so you can get a feel for the team and have a better chance at face time with the coaching staff.
6. If the coach okays the visit, make sure to schedule it wisely – for spring break, a weekend, or some other way that fits around your practice and games. You don’t want to miss practice or a game for a recruiting visit – it sends the wrong message to a college coach if you are bailing on your team to visit them.
Once it’s scheduled, all that’s left to do is go – remember to budget for travel and meals if the visit is unofficial.
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