December 21, 2001, Newsletter Issue #37: COLLEGE BASKETBALL RECRUITING

Tip of the Week

1) BRAINSTORM a list of colleges you are interested in.Try to trim your list to 4-6 colleges by the start of your senior year. Make a list of schools on three levels:
1) Ideal colleges
2) Realistic colleges
3) Back-up colleges
Be careful to choose the best level for your needs and desires. SEND A PACKET introducing yourself to the coaches at the schools on your list. Include a letter of introduction, unofficial transcripts, letters of reccomendation, and a video. Take the initiative. If you are interested in a school, don`t wait for them to "discover" you. Contact them!

EARN GOOD GRADES AND TEST SCORES. It`s not a myth. The first questions recruiters ask are "What is his GPA, and what is his test score (SAT or ACT, possibly SAT II.

PLAY AND EXCEL AT HIGH SCHOOL AND CLUB BASKETBALL. While the college coaches will do a majority of their scouting at summer camps, and high school and club tournaments (especially in July) where they can see numerous players play in one location, at one time. They usually use the Camp and Club season to do initial evaluations, and then use the high school season to do some final evaluation and tracking. But be sure to enjoy your high school experience, and sell-out for the team! Work hard, hustle, and play your game to help your team! Be coachable! The second question recruiters usually ask is, "Is he/she coachable?"

DISPLAY A GOOD ATTITUDE. When coaches go to a game, they don`t only watch you to see if you make any great plays. They also watch to see how you interact with your coach, teammates, opponents, and the officials. Always hustle on and off the court, and NEVER display any negative emotion. SCOUTING SERVICES are an option. Some college coaches use them, others throw the hundreds they receive into the circular file. They usually cost around $500 and can be useful. You can choose to use a scouting service, or bypass the service and contact colleges on your own with the help of your parents, coaches, and counselors.

APPLY FOR FINANCIAL AID (THE FAFSA). Applications will be available in your school counseling office in December.

KEEP AN UPDATED LIST OF HONORS AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS. This includes academic, athletic, civic, team, extracurricular honors, awards, and activities.

GO TO COLLEGE GAMES AND PRACTICES. Go and learn from the best. Don`t compare yourself to high school players. A large percentage of them won`t play college ball. See what level you have to take your game to. Watch the best players` work ethic and technique. Most college teams will allow you to attend their practices by appointment (ask your coach to call).

YOU KNOW YOU ARE A SERIOUS RECRUIT WHEN the college coach offers you a visit. Coaches begin the recruiting process by sending out tons of letters. Each coach on the staff may then make phone calls to dozens of players. Until then, the coach is constantly checking what recruits are interested. When they narrow their list down to their top prospects they start offering "Official Recruiting Visits." In NCAA Divisions I and II these are limited, so the coaches only use them on their top recruits. The NCAA only allows recruits to take a maximum of five Division I and II "Official Visits." NAIA and Division III don`t limit the number of official visits. A recruit can make an unlimited number of "Unofficial Visits." This is defined as the recruit paying for all of his own expenses. Make an appointment with the coach before you visit.

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