Signing day is just around the corner. November will be here before you know it. For many players, they are going to see their dreams come true and sign a scholarship with their dream school. These players are counting the days until the Letter of Intent gets e-mailed to them so they can sign on the dotted line.
Unfortunately, this blog isn’t about those kids. Sorry, but there is another group of softball players looking at the calendar and counting the days with a sense of dread.
Why are these players dreading the idea of getting to sign their scholarship paperwork?
It’s just another example of the grass being greener on the other side of the fence…
“She is too good to play at …”
“So and so is going to …. and she is so much better than so and so!”
“She has worked so hard I can’t believe she has to settle for…”
And on and on it goes!
Players, and parents, that are committed to schools that don’t ring the bell are always thinking that they could have, should have, deserve to, want to go to a bigger and better school. They feel like they are settling for a scholarship that is below their place in the food chain.
So, if you’re unhappy with the school that really wants you that is your choice, but there is a right and a wrong way to go about making your choice. Too many are choosing the wrong way.
Why do I feel this way? These players are not calling the coaches at the “little school who wants them” to tell that coach that they are having second thoughts and want to open up their recruitment. Rather they are working the back channels, keeping a coach who really wants them to be a part of their program in the dark, while they look for a better school.
So what’s the problem? The players should look out for themselves, right?
Well the answer is no, if it means not being honest with the coach and school who you are committed to. Remember, this coach has invested in you, offered you a scholarship, trusted you when you said you wanted to accept the scholarship and is going to be harmed when you dump them at the last minute with no warning!
It’s every players right to look for the very best school and program they can find. It’s not right to keep a coach, who’s livelihood depends on the decisions made by recruits, on the string while you try to do better. It’s OK to look for a better school, just tell the coach so they can also look for another player!
Players think of it this way:
You are going to prom with a great guy who you really like. You have the dress, you just got your hair and make up done, you are waiting with your parents in the foyer waiting for him to show up and head to the dance…and then he texts you to tell you he found a better date!
Or, you hear from a really good friend of yours that the coach at “little school who you thought wanted you” was talking to her about taking your place because they think she is better than you.
Not too cool is it?
If you are committed to a school that you don’t really want to go to then you should de-commit — today!
At the end of the day, you are not going to be happy at the wrong school. Period!
Finally, don’t forget there are thousands of players that would give anything to have that little school who wants you to be interested in them…just saying!
About the Author: Tory Acheson brings a wealth of knowledge to the Fastpitch Prep staff. He has coached at all levels of the game, including the last 25 years at the college level at the University of Wisconsin – Parkside, Tennessee Tech and Kennesaw State. He began his coaching career at the high school level spending 9 years Whitnall High School in Greenfield, Wis. and is now working as a professional softball instructor.