March 10, 2016

The role of the coach in college volleyball recruiting

What is the role coach?  In my NCSA Recruiting Education talks with club volleyball programs, I often get asked by families, what is the role of the coach?  

Today's club volleyball world has grown to proportions which are staggering. Who knew 25 years ago that there would be clubs sponsoring 75+ teams, entire convention centers packed wall to wall with courts and hundreds of college coaches descending upon these events to recruit?

With the professionalism of club volleyball and the amount of money families pay to participate, there can be a certain spoken or unspoken expectations of the coach's role.  Some club programs are large, well organized, with staff members focused on expanding the recruiting reach of the club, while other clubs are just trying to make sure they have a gym next week to practice in.  

I encourage families to reduce the coach's role to the simplest yet arguably, most important - The role of the coach is to make your daughter a better volleyball player.  Period.  Your daughter's ability will determine her opportunity.  The role of the player, is to listen and apply what the coach is telling her to become a better player.

For instance, when a coach tells a player to hit line, the coach is not saying that because they enjoy speaking those exact words.  They are instructing the player to become better - When an outside hitter can attack line, it is an effective attack angle which leads to kills, it is less stress on the shoulder, it changes the speed of the attack and the ability of an outside to attack line is something that college coaches value.  So, if the player listens to their coach and applies the instruction, then they will become a better outside hitter and thus more attractive to the college coach as a recruit.

Your coach is not your recruiting coordinator, ultimately you are.  Your coach is the volleyball professional who is trying to make your daughter a better player.  That is how they will best help your daughter achieve her collegiate goals.  If your coach is emailing me and calling me and Tweeting me and Instagram'ing me every day promoting your daughter, but she cannot hit line, then I won't recruit her.

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