November 7, 2011

You Have Questions - I Have Answers!!!

My daughter is an unsigned senior class of 2012, will the fact that her h.s. team is not very good hurt her chances to be recruited, she is a good player and has the stats to prove it , she also plays club and is on a competitive team that travels to big tournaments. 6 out 7 seniors on her club team last year were also unsigned at the beginning of club 5 went to D1 schools and 1 to a D2 school.

My daughter is 5'11" and can play OH,MH,OPP and DS as well as setter. She has had one call from a D3 school , but has had contact from (emails) D1 and D2 schools, but hasn't heard from them recently.

What should she do, should she email them or call them. also what kind of questions should she ask the coaches on the 1st phone contact?

Thank you, Mrs. J

High School Volleyball is rapidly diminishing in the recruiting process.  College coaches care about talent and attitude first and foremost; High School Volleyball from a recruiting perspective is a positive way to get touches on the ball in between club seasons.

As you indicate in your email, there was a later signing/committing of last year's seniors to their respective schools.  This is the norm in the process, but too many VolleyFamilies can panic when their daughter or their club is not committing freshman/sophomores.  Remember that early (and in my opinion, too early) commitments is the exception, not the rule.

As this is the High School Volleyball season, the best thing for your PSA to do is to keep email communicating with college coaches about her season and to keep reaching out to potential college programs with introductory emails.  This is the slower season for college recruiting as so many of us college coaches are swamped with our own season and just trying to keep our sanity.

When the club season rolls around, have your daughter get her Club Volleyball information out to collegiate programs and to keep interacting/reaching out to schools.  Don't worry about initiating calls because it is more important to reach out with contact and background information for potential schools.  Making calls to college programs comes a bit later in the process, after each party has evaluated each other's positives.

As per the history of your club program and the general recruiting trend, the 'active' recruiting process will start to pick up with the closing of the collegiate season, and the in person recruiting will begin at the end of the NCAA DI Women's Volleyball Quiet period, approximately the middle of January.  Over the Holiday break, you can always consider using a recruiting service to augment your efforts of exposure and communication.

Keep the focus on keeping Volleyball fun and keeping up the Volleyball skill development of your daughter. 

Dear Coach,

This is meant to be a personal note to let you know my daughter verbally committed last night to "State" University. She is extremely excited!!  And I owe much of this to your advice and I just wanted to say ‘thank you’ again. 

She was one of those PSAs that did go to the school’s volleyball camp right after AAUs and it seemed to be the correct decision. The reason is that it was a small camp. She got to know many of the girls on the team very well and made a favorable impression on them. That seemed to go a long way to getting where she was today.

Then a 3 ½ month delay occurred which was trying on my daughter and me too.  Faith and patience really paid off. I wish you the best of luck with the rest of your season.  And I hope to pass some of your knowledge I have learned from you to other parents this coming club season.  Thank you! R. H.

Congratulations on the great news for your daughter and I appreciate your thanks.  Glad to help and hope the upcoming club season is relaxed and great finish to your VolleyPSA's prep career!

Hi Coach,

My daughter is a Junior in High School.  A D1 school's coach that has been in contact with my daughter for the last two years and has traded a half dozen e-mails since September 1, e-mailed her again and called her high school coach to find out my daughter's high school practice times as well as post season playoff game dates/times.

What is the NCAA rule about this? This is an off-campus visit by an authorized coach to my daughter's school who has let both the high school coach and my daughter know that she might stop by. I've read the rules, and am not an expert, but is the coach allowed to do this, and if not is my daughter liable if she consents?

I appreciate your time.

Regards, T.K.

Per what you have written to me, the only NCAA issue I can see is the exact meaning of "has been in contact with my daughter for the last two years".  Up until 9/1 of your PSA's junior year in high school, a NCAA program is only allowed to send an intro letter/questionnaire and camp material.

As to the efforts made to come see your daughter play/practice, these are within the NCAA rules, as long as nothing more than an unavoidable exchange of greeting occurs with your daughter (away from the university campus). 

As I see it, you have nothing to worry about with NCAA rules and even if the coach is treading into NCAA potential violations, your daughter would not be held liable for a college coach's actions.

Hi Coach,

I should have been more specific, that is exactly the contact the coach had with my daughter. First it was a letter stating the NCAA regs prior to September 1, followed by a questionnaire each year and camp brochures.

Things went pretty much as you suggested below. There was a brief acknowledgement that the coach was there, but no other exchange. Your information was very timely and helpful.

Thank you very much.

Regards, T.K.

Glad to help - All seems good and enjoy the process.


My Daughter is a junior in high school and for the past 3 years in club  and high school she has played outside hitter. she also has aspirations to play in college at a competitive level. The problem is she is only 5’6 and she and I know she won’t be competitive for an outside position in college. 

Her  club coach suggested that she try and switch to a Ds. she is a fairly decent passer but in high school  and club she has only played outside she did play back row, but that’s not the same as being a back row only player. She has a very good back row attack, has a great serve which usually produces aces every game, and has been second setter for her varsity high school team and club team. I am trying to convince her to focus more on setting, but she doesn’t enjoy that as much. 

Do you have any suggestions on how she can make herself more competitive against girls who have been in this position for several years? She is a very hardworking player and energetic.  She talks a lot on the court and is extremely coachable. She is  worried that will not be enough at tryouts to make a national team.

Also after AAUs last year she received a letter of interest and a questionnaire form from a pac 10 school which is still her top choice for college. Her high school coach said they are probably  interested in her as a Ds. My other question is do you think that she will still be competitive for a spot on the pac 10 school’s roster if she doesn’t make a national team this year? Will the coach still be able to see her if she only goes to one or two national tournaments?

Thanks so much for your  time and your website, a frazzled mom who is trying to find the answer to her daughter’s worries

Frazzled VolleyMom:

Let me shoot straight with you so I can be a resource for the craziness called college recruiting.

1.  The PAC 10 (I guess 12 now) will not be recruiting her for a OH position, only Libero/DS.  The PAC 12 has 6'5" OH's and just as tall MB's and a 5'6" OH will not work.

2.  She should not be a setter if she does not enjoy setting; the position has too much pressure in rally score and is also height driven because of the freaky tall OH's she would need to block against.

3.  There are many, many and many very good small volleyball players who have transitioned to the LIbero/DS position earlier than your daughter because they read the OH tea leaves.  Can she catch up, probably, but others will have a lead and stand out more.

4.  I suggest she stay as an OH because she will still get the passing defensive work she needs, but has a better chance of being on the court since there are two or three OH's (counting right side) versus only one Libero.  Just make sure she is the best passing defending OH in the universe, or at least on the team. 

5.  College coaches want talent - We don't care about the team designation that much.  We understand the politics and pressure of club volleyball.  If  a player has talent is is playing in tournaments we attend to recruit, then we will find them.  The most important thing any college program does is recruit; this is why you will see college coaches at almost every club event no matter when, where or how many teams.

6.  She needs to broaden her recruiting horizon drastically as a Junior.  I understand the allure of the Pac 12; it is a great volleyball conference and any player would want to play in a member school.  The reality is that this one Pac 12 school may have contacted 50 players like your daughter because they anticipated needing a DS/Libero in her class, but things change (maybe the program redshirted a DS and won't need one in 2013?) and the odds are long they actually select/offer your daughter.  While the Pac 12 school is her number one choice, she needs to be reaching out to as many other schools which look tasty to give her self a number 2 through 10 choice.

To summarize, here are my suggestions:

1. Encourage your daughter to play the position she wants to play, and encourage her to be the best possible player in that position.

2.  Don't worry about which team category your daughter makes, but be aware of their tournament schedule.  College coaches will find the talent if it is in the gym, but the team has to be in the gym no matter the team designation.

3.  Keep reaching out to new college programs with introduction information, as you can never have too many schools interested in your PSA.

4.  Slow down mentally.  It may not seem so, but there is a bunch of time in the recruiting process and the MAJORITY of college bound players don't make their selections until late, late Junior Year and most of the time, into their Senior Year. 

Like the old story, you want to be like the Tortoise and not the Hare right now.  This will also allow you to have a much more enjoyable club season instead of stressing out about which polo wearing dingbats like me are walking past your daughter's court and stopping to check a text on their phone, which makes it seem like we are looking at a player!


No comments:

Post a Comment

Please stay positive or at the minimum present constructive criticism - Negative comments or attacks upon other reader's opinions will not be posted.