I met you in San Jose at the AVCA College Prep Combine last month, have read your e-book and learned a lot from all of the things that you do so thank you for all of that.
My daughter is a sophomore who has played club volleyball since she was 8. She is a 5'-10" setter and we are working hard to get her into the best school possible. Our club season will end in New Orleans at the end of June and her high school will start practicing in mid July. Obviously not a lot of time for relaxing and in that time she typically goes to college camps. Oregon last year, Stanford and UCLA this year.
My question is about the USA HP tryouts or even SCVA HP tryouts. It seems like making one of these teams is a great accomplishment and I hope that the girls who do get a chance to work with great coaches and learn a lot, but I don't really know if it is something to strive for. The recruiting coach for my daughter's club just said that it was solely a way for them to make money and that no one should waste their time. He said the girls were better off going to college camps.
So I wanted to get your opinion on the subject and ask what is the best thing my daughter can do to help her get recruited by a competitive program? How should she train and use her time to improve?
Thanks for attending my NCSA Athletic Recruiting Education Talk at the AVCA College Prep Combine
1. Only use camps for training purposes, not recruiting. Paying big money to be seen by one college program is not the best choice for resources.
2. If the HP camp is a good training opportunity, then it is worth it. The HP camp is a money maker for the Regions and USA Volleyball because the odds of making the national team are 12 in however many post high school age female players are playing volleyball in a 4 year cycle…..Try to connect with families in the region that have participated in a camp/training session with the HP protocols to see if it was good training.
3. Your daughter's talent will determine her opportunities.
4. Because you are in Los Angeles, you should definitely take advantage of beach volleyball - She should be playing doubles as often as possible. As a setter, this will increase her physicality, her explosiveness, her understanding of competitiveness, along with giving her a different training segment than just setting all day long.
5. As a SoCal player, you must be open enough to consider programs outside of the west coast. Too many Cali VB families keep their collegiate opportunities narrowed to the west coast and won't consider anything east of Las Vegas. Unfortunately, too many non-west coast college volleyball programs won't actively recruit California kids because they have learned it is a waste of their recruiting time/money. As a setter (remember that setters only get scholarship recruited every 2 to 3 years, as opposed to every year like a hitter), the best way to provide opportunities with competitive programs is to be active in your outreach to programs outside of California, and specifically say that your daughter wants to go to school outside of California. If college programs knows you want to leave California, then they will be active in their recruiting efforts!
6. Patience - Setters tend to be committed later in the recruiting process than hitters, and unless your daughter is a monster or setting freak, she won't secure her opportunity until spring of her Junior year and most likely, not until winter of her Senior Year.
Good luck and keep reaching out in the recruiting process. Take advantage of your volleyball geography!