Below is an excerpt from an article about recruiting services:
“You can’t determine an athlete’s character through communication with a proxy.”
An Unpaved Path
Going through the recruiting process is a vulnerable time for a family. The unpaved path is daunting. You don’t know what you’re expected to do, or when to do it, and there are so many rules. Undoubtedly, having no clear track to follow can scare even the most knowledgeable parents and athletes.
Up until recently, there were limited options out there to guide families through recruiting. The space has been dominated by recruiting services with questionable business practices that lock athletes out of their own recruiting processes.
Pay to Play
Traditional recruiting services promise to promote your profile to thousands of college coaches in their extensive network. All you do is fill out a profile, invest thousands of dollars in a “coach” or “consultant,” and the service takes care of the rest – and this is where things gets murky. Recruiting services seem like the perfect solution to remedy uncertainty. Seem being the operative word.
Recruiting services seem to take the guesswork out of recruiting. Recruiting services seem to have the athlete’s best interests in mind. Recruiting services seem to offer exposure that a family can only dream of.
Recruiting services seem like a no-brainer. So why the questionable reputation? Unfortunately, recruiting services are not as they seem. Here are three reasons why recruiting services don’t work.
The Recruiting Service Paradox
- College coaches want to hear directly from the student-athlete
According to a survey of college coaches by the ABCA, the majority of college coaches want to make communication through players a requirement of the recruiting process.
This is perhaps the most important reason why even well-intentioned recruiting services put athletes at a disadvantage. The recruiting service model contradicts what college coaches are looking for. College coaches want players that take initiative. An athlete that transfers responsibility to a third-party misrepresents himself as passive and unmotivated.
This goes back to the fact that coaches take a holistic approach to evaluating student-athletes. They want students who will be super teammates and superstars. A student-athlete’s character is a key factor in a collegiate coach’s evaluation. You can’t determine an athlete’s character through communication with a proxy.
At their core, recruiting services monetize fear.”
- Inflated Sticker Price
Recruiting services operate on a simple premise. A rookie recruiting mistake can cost a family a lot of pain. The cost of the recruiting service pales in comparison. This pitch preys on a family’s insecurities about being novices to the process. Recruiting services take advantage of a family’s desperation to navigate the process correctly. At their core, recruiting services monetize fear.
Families are manipulated into forking over thousands of dollars for an inflated service with no clear attribution of value.
- Relinquish Control to a Third Party
Recruiting services remove the athlete from his or her recruiting process. Relinquishing control is dubious when you consider that it’s to somebody that cares less about your future than you do. It’s ironic how a solution which promises to eliminate uncertainty leaves you even more in the dark.
And in whom are you entrusting your future?
Let’s recount how they work. Recruiting services hook families through enticing them to create a free profile viewable by colleges. It is only after they invest the time into building a profile that the families are presented with the tall cost of the “free” service.
The dishonesty doesn’t end there. Once they’ve secured a family’s money, do recruiting services deliver?
“They promised they would be there for support every step of the way,” said Sean Lunkenheimer, a former student-athlete whose family invested in two years of a popular recruiting service to help him run track in college. Routine check-ins were part of the offering. “I only heard from them once.”
“I would write with schools I was interested in,” said Lunkenheimer.
“They told me that the schools were not looking for someone like me this year, based on the events I ran,” said Lunkenheimer. “Despite the fact that my events spanned sprints, middle distance events, and hurdles.”
“It was basically a transaction.”
Here at RCTW, your future is not a transaction to us. Our coaches are committed to helping you reach your goals. To honest effort. They know this sport and how to help you succeed. They can help you select the college that is best suited for you.
1. Make a list of colleges you are interest in, why are you interested in each, and share them with your coach.
2. Do they have the degree program you wish to study?
3. Collect your school transcripts
4. Have you taken the SAT/ACT?
a. If not, get the dates of these tests and start studying, ensure your test dates do not conflict with regatta weekends.
b. Which is more important to the schools you are interested in attending?
5. Register on NCAA.com, there is a fee for this.
6. Register on BeRecruited.com, they will attempt to set up a service, but simply say no. They are used by rowing coaches and are reputable.
7. Train to make your body strong, fit and know your sport
8. Eat healthy to fuel your training
9. Rest, the hours before midnight are the most important!
10. Hydrate, if you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated. The body needs consistent water input!
12. Maintain balance in your life!
13. Communicate any contacts that you receive from a college with your coach. Allow us to work for you.
14. There are rules to follow in the recruiting process. Allow your coaches to assist in making sure you get the most out of every contact, visit or phone call.