what college basketball coaches look for

3 Basketball Recruiting Tips to Help take Some of the Pressure Away

So your travel basketball season has come to an end. You’ve played in showcase event after showcase event, you have been to tons of basketball camps, such as elite camps, exposure camps and team camps. You’ve done everything you can think of to get noticed and get recruited, but are not getting the looks you want. Don’t panic, stay focused and get a good understanding of my 3 college basketball recruiting tips that will help you through the recruiting process.

For the lucky ones, the summer grind will lead to recruiting letters and calls, retweets, likes and texts. Coaches may start asking you for in-home meetings and official campus visits. The basketball recruiting process can be somewhat complicated, especially for parents that want their child to make the right decision. The recruiting process is even more overwhelming for the player who feels the heavy pressure of having to decide on the next 4 years of their lives. This can be a very stressful time, I definitely know from personal experience. Some questions to consider during the basketball recruiting process are the following.

Where do you start? Who do you talk to? Who do you trust? What direction do you go?

There is no magic formula for the recruiting process…at least that I’m aware of…but hopefully the our basketball recruiting tips will help some of you ease the pressure of the recruiting process. It can be an overwhelming process, but it’s important to remember that having someone offer you a spot on their college basketball team is something that many families would die for. Count yourselves lucky!

Here are 3 basketball recruiting tips based on my experiences that can help you with the recruiting process.

1. Don’t Get Hung Up on Perceptions

Many kids grow up dreaming of playing for Duke or Kentucky. They are convinced that they want to play in the PAC-12 or Big Ten. But when it comes down to it, your perception of a school, coach or conference is not always reality. Since my college days, I’ve met people that played for my dream school. The experiences they described to me were anything but dreamy!

The truth is, you may think you love a school, coach or conference, but you have no idea what that program or conference is like until you’re in it. What you see on TV and read in papers is not always reality.

Do not decide where you’re going before you experience it for yourself. Which brings me to point #2.

2. Take Official Visits and Do So With an Open-Mind

How to Play Basketball in CollegeYou may think you have your mind made up about going to school A, and you feel like you owe it to the coach at school B to go on an official visit anyway…after all, he’s been recruiting you from the beginning.

So, you visit school B already convinced that it’s not the place for you. A word of advice…don’t waste anyone’s time! Don’t go on an official visit if you are certain that that school is not for you.

College coaches are busy and you should have better things to do with your time. Only go on an official visit if you are seriously considering that school.

Once you are on a visit, do the following:

  • Learn everything you can about the basketball program, the coach, and players
  • This is very important: learn everything you can about the school

It’s important to weigh your options, but you have to open yourself up to those options first! You may find that what you thought about school B is anything but true! But take your visits and do so with an open-mind. 

3. For Many, It’s About the People

Some kids and parents struggle with the recruiting process because they do not have an appreciation for what it means to play collegiate athletics. The most important thing I can tell you: go where you like the people the most! The majority of your college athletics experience will take place off the playing field. You will have team meals, road trips, weekend parties, weightlifting sessions, locker room talks and other social events.

While on your visit, ask yourself, do I see myself living my life with these people? Are the guys or girls on the team now the kinds of people that I like to be around? Your teammates and classmates are going to be your best friends over the next few years. You will spend countless hours with them. Do not get hung up on your desire to play for a certain school or in a certain conference and sacrifice your comfort and happiness away from the playing field. This is tough to do, especially if you have a lot of talent. However, if the school and people are not the right fit, you need to move on.

I hope these basketball recruiting tips help you in your recruiting process. It’s important to talk to people with an open-mind. Take your visits and see where you fit in. Your college days and your playing days will be over before you know it, but your college relationships should last a lifetime. Good luck!

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