5 Tips To Get Your Email Noticed by College Basketball Coaches
Last year, I wrote a blog post about how to play basketball in college, and it included 10 important steps. The final step, which at this point the player is a LEGITIMATE college basketball prospect, is to email college basketball coaches.
Emailing college basketball coaches is a proactive step to let them know as a player you are interested in their basketball program, and hopefully, create some interest from the college coach in recruiting you.
So, what I’d like to do is explain the process of emailing college basketball coaches starting with creating a list of possible schools, how to find a college coach’s email addresses, what to include in the email, and finishing with how to send the emails.
#1 Come Up With a List of Possible Colleges
Coming up with a list of REALISTIC possible colleges to play basketball at is probably the HARDEST, but most important step. It’s extremely difficult because the majority of parents and players are not very realistic about the level at which they or their player can potentially play.
Realistic is the key word here. We’re not talking about colleges that a player dreams about playing at. We’re not talking about the Duke’s, Kentucky’s, Arizona’s, North Carolina’s, UCLA’s, etc. of the world. These schools pretty much have their recruits locked in by the time players are in 9th or 10th grade, and they’re all top 50-100 players.
So, for the rest of the players, how do you come up with a realistic list of colleges at which you could potentially play?
Firstly, do not ask mom and dad (unless they have played at a high level). Instead, ask the high school coach, AAU coach, local scouts, etc. the level at which they think the player can play.
#2 Find the Emails for Your List of Colleges
Most times, finding the emails for college coaches is as easy as doing a Google search and then clicking a few links.
For example, if you wanted to find the emails for the coaches at Division 2 Anderson University in South Carolina, simply Google “Anderson University basketball” and click on the link to their basketball page.
On that page, their is a link that says “More+”, and if you put your mouse over that page, you will see a drop down for coaches, click on the coaches’ page, you’re then taken to a page that lists all their coaches and has their emails. Copy and paste!
Follow the steps below and you will land on the coaches’ page here.
Not all of them are this EASY. For instance, you’re not going to find any big-time DI college basketball coach email on the school’s website.
For the low-major and mid-major, often times it’s just a matter of searching a little bit. A little trick, I’ve learned to use is to Google “[insert name of school] athletic staff directory” and that usually provides a link where you can find the basketball staffs’ emails.
#3 Compose the Emails
Ok, at this point you have your list of realistic colleges that you’re interested in playing for and you’ve collected most, if not all, of their emails.
Now you need to create the emails, and each email need to be personalized for that school. Do not send a mass email to all of the schools. That will turn off the coaches.
Instead, take the following steps:
- Personalized Introduction – write the email to the actual coach(es) and let them know why you are interested in their specific school and basketball program.
- Academic & Basketball Background – include all applicable academic information (school, class, GPA, test scores, etc.) as well as basketball information (school, AAU team, position, stats, etc).
- Contact Info – include all contact info for yourself, your parents, high school coach, and AAU coach.
- Links to Highlight Tape – include all links to your basketball film, which could be half games, whole games, or highlight videos. “Mixtapes” are highly discouraged as these are often times style over substance. We wrote an article on how to create a highlight video.
- Game Schedule – provide a game schedule for your high school and/or AAU team where the coaches can potentially come watch you play.
Below is a sample college basketball email that I created from my high school self to Coach Bob McKillop at Davidson.
Dear Coach McKillop,
My name is Brendan Winters, and I’m a 6’4″ shooting guard in the class of 2018 from Mullen High School in Denver, CO. I’m extremely interested in playing basketball at Davidson College because of the way you run a motion offense tailor made for shooters as well as the top notch academics off the court.
I averaged 17.3 ppg, 8.2 rebs, and 3.2 assists this past high school season and had a 3.8 GPA. I have a two-part SAT score of [insert score] and three-part SAT score of [insert score].
I play AAU for PSB Select, and we’ll be playing the NCAA live periods this spring at the Phenom Hoops Challenge in Spartanburg, SC (April 21-23) and the On the Radar Hoops event in Powder Springs, GA (April 28-30). I don’t have the game schedules yet for these tournaments, but when I get them, I will email them to you.
This is the best email address for me, my phone number is [insert phone number], and my home address is [insert address]. My parents, high school coach, and AAU coach contact info is below as well.
[name of parent(s)] – [insert phone number]
[name of high school coach] – [insert phone number]
[name of AAU coach] – [insert phone number]
Lastly, I’ve included links to some of my game film as well as a highlight tape, which I hope you will take a look at. Please let me know if you need any other information, and I’ll be happy to send it to you.
[link to film]
[link to film]
[link to film]
Thank you for your time, and I hope to see you at our tournaments this spring!
#4 Proofread the Email
This may seem like a small step, but it shows a player’s attention to detail, which is a HUGE thing for college coaches. Make sure there are no grammatical errors or wrong info or broken links, etc.
#5 Send the Email & Follow-Up
Copy and paste the emails for that particular school into the email, and send away. That’s it, you’re done!
If done correctly, meaning the player chose realistic schools, collected the correct email addresses, included the appropriate information, then they should start getting some replies somewhat quickly.
If a player doesn’t get any replies, the issue is either:
A) the email got lost in the inbox of the coach, which can happen due to the craziness of college coaching, or
B) the schools chosen weren’t realistic, and the college coaches watched the film and didn’t think the player was a good fit for their program and/or level.
Either way, players should always follow up with at least one more email at minimum in case the situation was issue A as mentioned above. In the case of issue B, which the college coach may or may not tell a player directly, that player should then probably choose some “lower” schools and email them.
Keep in mind though that even if you hear back from a college coach that does not necessarily mean they are actually going to recruit you. They might, but a better sign of their actual interest in you is if they begin to call you, come watch you play, and even invite you to come to campus for a visit.
Emailing is just a proactive step in the process that can potentially help, but at the end of the day, it comes down to how you perform on the court!
Have you tried emailing college basketball coaches? We would love to hear from you!