D1 Coaches Describe Top Turnoffs in Recruiting

What are the top 5 turnoffs you experience in any aspect of the recruiting process (at an event, on the phone, in person, through email, etc.)?

Below are the top 5 answers tallied up from 15 coaches across the country. The coaches who responded compete in the SEC, ACC, BIG TEN, BIG 12, MAC, WAC, WCC, IVY, BIG SOUTH, BIG EAST and SOUTHERN conferences.

#1 Answer: Players speaking for themselves on the phone or on a visit avoid parents getting too involved. Players who take ownership of the process are more appealing than those who do not.

Regardless of level of play coaches want to work with mature, driven players over a 4-year period. Maturity does not happen overnight and it is not magically discovered. If players want to separate themselves from other recruits of the equal ability level then players need to handle their own business. Parents, put the leg work in prior to your son getting on the phone with a coach. If a coach wants his transcript, make sure your son takes care of it ASAP and emails it to the coach. These optics may not seem important, but to a coach who will be spending 4-years with your son, these values will separate your son from other equally talented recruits. Coaches do not want to babysit players when they arrive on campus, this does happen unfortunately, but minimizing the immaturity of a player prior to getting on campus will only increase the recruits’ opportunities, academic scores, and overall experience when in school. In short, parents stay away, let your son talk and handle his business. Your job when he is talking is evaluating the coach and his staff. When it comes to decision time, this is where a parent’s role is critical (finances, location, opportunity, etc.) because of your life experience, you have a better idea of which coach is selling and which coach genuinely cares about your son. Each person in the family has a role in the recruiting process. Know your role, embrace it, and the process will become enjoyable rather than stressful.

#2 Answer: When sending an email, take the time to personalize the email to the coach or school, do not copy and paste a generic email, and paying attention to detail when composing an email is critical (punctuation, grammar, spelling, etc.).

RECRUITS….DON’T BE LAZY. People think being recruited is a volume or numbers game when it comes to sending emails. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Recruits, take time out of your day, research the school, draft an intelligent, grammatically correct, spell-checked email to your top 10-15 schools. It is blatantly obvious when a player sends out “mass” emails to coaches. Coaches are human beings and understand what goes on, they ask themselves, “does this kid really want to come here? Why should I spend time reading his email when it is clearly copy/paste material?” Then they click delete. Players, you have limited opportunities to make a first impression to a coach, don’t waste your opportunity because of laziness or that night out with friends. Playing baseball at the highest levels require sacrifices of many kinds. What are you willing to sacrifice to reach your goals?

#3 Answer:  Poor communication, call on-time when scheduled, be prepared with transcripts from guidance counselor.

RECRUITS….BE PROMPT. Do what you say you’re going to do. It is that simple. Accountability is a keyword players will hear when playing college baseball, because baseball is the ultimate individual/team sport. Trust, accountability, reliability are all important to show when being recruited. Excuses will put you on the outside looking in, coaches recruit 10-20 kids at a time who all possess the same talent. The inability to stay true to your word is a major red flag in the recruiting process and could get you crossed off the list. Like I said in the beginning, handle your business, this is a constant interview, and it does not take any special talent besides your baseball ability. Stay organized, write things down for a to-do list from coaches, check the tasks off the list. Put effort in the recruiting process and you will reap the rewards, because coaches notice the little things, at least the good ones do.

#4 Answer: Social Media discipline.

RECRUITS….YOU ARE BEING MONITORED. Social media is the ultimate reference for a coach. Coaches can access your lives with one click on Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, etc. What are you doing away from your parents and coaches? How will you represent the school? Is he mature? Is he a risk off the field? Is he worth our money? These are just a few questions that go through a coach’s head when looking at a player’s profile. As I stated before, coaches do not want to babysit. Recruits, do the right thing, stay off of social media, but if you are on social media, don’t post anything your parents or grandparents wouldn’t approve of. Remember, you will represent the school when you travel to cities and attend school, if you are not willing to respect the name on the back of your jersey, what makes coaches think you will respect the name on the front? Parents, limit posting pictures of college visits. It is an exciting time without question, but posting the 20th school on Instagram begs the question, who wants this more, the parents or the player? When being recruited, it is always best to leave them asking for more, posting your lives and visits to colleges can backfire in the recruiting process. Recruits and parents, the more you post could limit your bargaining power with a school as well as reduce your opportunities of being recruited. Commitments are made public on a daily basis, if you post a picture of School A and a recruit commits there the next day, that was your position, School B now has information they didn’t have to work for, and in turn could cost you in the long run. Finally, it should go without saying, the legal drinking age of alcohol is 21 for a reason, and drugs are illegal for a reason. Follow the law, Elite Sports Advising does not support or condone the consumption of alcohol by minors or the use of illegal drugs.

#5 Answer: Recruits who talk smack on their current coaches. Summer or high school coach. Respect.

RECRUITS….THEY’RE GOING TO BE YOUR COACH TOO! Families and recruits, bite your tongue and keep your negative comments to yourself even if the summer coach or high school coach is terrible. We all deal with it and all this does is give the impression to a college recruiter that you’re searching for excuses. Limit the drama in the recruiting process. Finally, last but certainly not least. RECRUITS, how you talk to your parents on a visit, before, during or after a game is a strong impression of what type of person you are to a coach. Show your parents respect, be a young adult, if you can disrespect your own family in public there is no telling what you would do to a coach. This is an immediate red flag to coaches and will certainly get your name crossed off the list.