High school coaches can help increase the chances of a high school athlete being recruited to play at the college level—or helping the athlete reach out to schools of interest to see if there is an opportunity to play. That’s why it’s important for athletes and parents to understand how to work with their coach in terms of being recruited by interested schools, or reaching out to college coaches to express interest in playing for them.
An article on studentathleteworld.com recommends that an athlete “sit down with your coaches as early as possible. As soon as you decide that you want to play college sports, have a sit down with your coach and say, ‘Hey! I want to play in college. I don't want it to interfere with me as a high school player. I want to be the best high school player I can be. I want to help your team and so on, but I also want to play in college.’
“Ask them for whatever help they are willing to give. Be thankful and appreciative to them for any help they are willing to do.”
The article emphasizes that it’s up to the high school athlete to be proactive in receiving assistance from his or her high school coaches. On the other hand, it’s important to not ask your coach for help too early during your high school career. “You don't just want to be thinking about college when you are not even good enough to be a productive high school player.”
An article on collegesportsscholarships.com encourages athletes and parents to make the high school coach an ally in your search not to rely on the coach to search for colleges that might have interest. “Every college coach you come across is going to be looking for a point of reference to verify your stated abilities; this should be the job for your coach,” the article says. “Have your coach work with you, not for you. Make sure they are proofreading information you send to coaches, helping with highlight and skills videos, helping narrow the search of schools that peak your interest.”
An article on starathletesonline.com provides four tips on how to utilize your coach in starting the process to generate interest from college coaches:
• Ask your coach to give you an honest, unbiased opinion of what level of collegiate athletics he/she thinks that you can play.
• Ask your coach to give you copies of all your game films.
• Ask your coach to write a reference letter on your behalf.
• Ask your coach which college coaches that he has relationships with that he thinks might be a good fit for you and if he would contact them for you.
As this article points out: “There are roughly 2,000 sport playing colleges in the US. There are roughly 474,000 college athletic roster spots annually (this is for freshman thru seniors in college) and roughly 7.7 million high school athletes in the U.S. This means that you have roughly a 6% chance of playing college sports. It is ultimately your responsibility as an athlete/parent to educate yourself on the process and to take ownership of it.”