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Achieving Success in College Recruiting- a "How To" Guide- Sheet #2 STARTING THE PROCESS

Achieving Success in College Recruiting
Recruiting “How To” Guide Sheet #2:

   David Stoeckel, College Recruiting Group (Laguna Hills, CA)
WHEN should I begin my College Recruiting activities?
For the very most talented and highly-competitive players, i.e. serious upper NCAA Division I prospects, you should initiate the process by the spring of your Sophomore year, or the summer after your Sophomore year, at the latest.  All other college-bound players should start their recruiting activities not later than the fall or winter of their Junior year. If you are currently past those dates in YOUR high school career, it is not necessarily too late to get the attention of the college coaches, but you will need to accelerate your recruiting activities and also realize that you may experience a number of “lost opportunities”.  However, our motto is Never Say Never; we have had successful recruiting experiences with players who were already in their Senior year of high school when they initiated their recruiting activities.  It can be done; it’s just simply not the preferred, minimum stress approach.
Now that you have determined that you can realistically play at the college level, there are three Guidelines that you need to keep in mind, throughout your recruiting activities, in order to have the most successful experience possible.
1. Stress academics.   It is important to get the very best grades you can, starting in 9th grade! Good grades can do a lot to help you expand your opportunities; similarly, bad grades can have a significant detrimental impact on your recruiting success. Get the very best grades you can, in the toughest subject areas. Not only can this open the doors to more colleges that you may otherwise not be admitted to, but it could also provide the opportunity to receive academic scholarship money.
2. Be realistic in your expectations.   This applies to both athletic and academic goals that you may set for yourself. If you insist on shooting too high, in either area, you could lose out on a number of great college opportunities that could provide you with an excellent education as well as a rewarding athletic experience. 
3. TAKE the INITIATIVE.   This is the most vital and crucial of the three Guidelines.  Being proactive is what our College Recruiting Program is all about. Many of your counselors/coaches/advisors may have urged you to “Just Go for It”, “Call the college coaches”, “Make it Happen”, etc. but they sometimes neglect to tell you exactly How, When or What to do!  In our articles, we will explain precisely what actions to take, when to implement them, and how to most effectively do the things that you need to do to get your recruiting experience off to a strong start.
The first step in your proactive recruiting program involves sitting down, athlete and parents, and identifying what your primary goals and objectives are for college. More specifically, what is the relative importance of your sports participation (including playing time and athletic scholarship opportunities) versus academics (targeting schools that have your major plus the overall academic strength and prestige of the institution), enrollment size of the school, geographic location within the United States (i.e., proximity of school to your home), and other similar factors.
As mentioned above, there are an enormous number of colleges with Men’s (982) and Women’s (1,167) soccer programs in the country. You don’t have the time, nor is it even a good practical idea to try to communicate, simultaneously, with several hundred coaches.  You must narrow down your list of realistic target schools. Our Priority Evaluation procedures allow you to effectively accomplish this task.
In our Recruiting “How To” Guide Sheet #3 we will discuss, in much more detail, how you should assess and complete your Priority Evaluation.  We have even developed a “Priority Analysis Worksheet” which allows you to go through this process in a highly efficient and effective manner.  And, we will make available to the readers of our Guide Sheet #3, a complimentary copy of this Worksheet.
Questions?  If you have questions about any of the topics or material covered in this Guide Sheet, please feel free to email them to us. Likewise, if you have any general comments about our articles or have suggestions that may make this series more informative and valuable to future college-bound student-athletes, we would welcome those messages, too. We will then select a few questions or comments that we feel would be of general interest to the greatest number of our readers and provide answers in a future edition of our Guide Sheets. Your messages can be emailed to 
Good luck with your recruiting experience.
David Stoeckel
College Recruiting Group
Laguna Hills, CA


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