December 8, 2016

Senior Year College Volleyball Recruiting

Hello Coach,

My daughter is a Grade 12 student in Western Canada.  We are US citizens, but Canadian residents.  She is a 5'8" DS/L in club, and OH at school.  She also plays HP beach volleyball.  D wants to play post-secondary volleyball in the Midwest;  our family is moving back to MI in the summer of 2017.

Our club teams don't play in the US very often, so it is hard to get exposure.  She went to several D3 camps last summer and had several offers, but she was hoping for a bigger school experience.  We have highlight and match videos, and we have emailed coaches,  but with little success.  We were late getting started because recruiting is so different in Canada.  The Elite players here are just now committing to top Canadian programs.  Her beach coaches say she has D1 potential, but we are too late in the recruiting cycle.

We plan to contact coaches again once the college season winds down, and hope that something sticks.  She is willing to walk on;  she just wants to play.  Do you have any suggestions for us?  How do we find those programs that are still looking to add players this late in the Grade 12 cycle?

Thanks in advance,

The most important thing to remember right now is that for Seniors, this is the slowest time in the recruiting process.  

It takes tremendous patience to get through the fall and into the winter.  The current USA college volleyball season is going full tilt and college coaches are focused on that, while in the coach's subconcisous, they are determining what roster spots they will need to fill (both immediately in the next Fall, and further down the line).  

While it is natural to be a bit frustrated, families cannot know exactly what college players got hurt, are flunking out, are going to transfer, are going to get cut, etc.  All of these examples equates into hidden roster openings which only the head coach knows about.

Once the season is completed, then the roster openings start to become visible.  

In general, there is a quick slam of recruiting for about 3 weeks; from just before Thanksgiving to the middle of December.  This corresponds to the college volleyball season coming to an end for the majority of teams, and the natural slowdown around the Holidays.

The tempo of recruiting will pick up again in January, as college coaches get ready to go to the various early club season tournament and recruiting combines.

For both the Nov/Dec and January time frames, the players/families must be in recruiting mode.  You should be reaching out to appropriate college programs, with current video, contact and academic information, along with the most current club team updates.  Don't worry if a college has not responded previously (last month, last year, etc.) because they may not have had an opening last time you contacted them. 

A mistake that families make is thinking that a college program will keep your information and reach back out to you.  That is not how it works, college coaches work in the moment, so they will evaluate and respond to the recruits which are reaching out to them in the moment.

This means that families must be recruiting ready before early prime season comes into fruition.  Being late to the party is what hurts more Unsigned Seniors than anything.

Be patient, get ready and be aggressive and consistent in your outreach and communication with the appropriate college volleyball coaches....and, look outside of DI as other categories will have additional opportunities.

Good luck!

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