Recruiting is a very complicated process. There are many traps that await the unwitting family. We often talk about how you don’t know what you don’t know. Well parents, here are a couple things you need to know because college coaches will cross your kid off their list because of things that you do.
I understand you think you are helping but…
1. Don’t write e-mails for your kids. College coaches want to communicate with the player herself, not you. And they know when you write them, because your kids do not talk like you do. Kids don’t use the same vocabulary their parents use and it really sticks out.
2. Don’t call the coach. College coaches love it when a player calls them. It gives them a chance to get to know that player better. They love the fact that it shows confidence and maturity. They love hearing the players voice and gaining a better understanding of what makes that player tick. It’s your kids recruitment, not yours!
3. Behave yourself in the stands! Yelling at the umpire, talking poorly about the coach, talking badly about other players, comparing your kid to other kids are all red flags. College coaches know that the fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree. If you are this person, they may think your kid is too!
4. Take a back seat when your kid is talking with a college coach. If you make a visit, or if you are talking with a coach after a camp or clinic or game, let your kid do the talking. Every time you interject, every time you jump in with an opinion, every time you talk about what your kid can do, you hurt your kid. Let your kid carry the conversation. It is her recruitment!
5. Never say how “different” you are than other parents. You probably really don’t push harder, hold a higher standard, or expect your kid to work harder. You probably aren’t more objective, nor do you know more about what it takes because you were a coach. In the eyes of college coaches, parents are parents, period. And all those qualifiers don’t make you more “expert” than other parents. It just makes you more annoying!
So now you know!
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.