by Ben Schneweis
TC Storm will be offering College Recruiting Seminars for boys and girls on March 8th and 9th respectively. As those events approach, I’d like to offer just a snapshot of the presentation we’ll put on before we get to the Q & A with a panel of college coaches.
We live in a part of the country that isn’t known for consistently producing top soccer talent, so much of the recruiting process often falls on the recruit. Recognizing and embracing that is a huge part of the recruiting process. TC Storm works hard to provide college showcase playing opportunities for its older teams, but not every player gets contacted by colleges that are the right fit for them at those events. Having grown up near here (Grand Forks), and having recruited athletes to play soccer at two local institutions (North Dakota State University and Concordia College), I’d like to share some thoughts on the experiences I’ve had as a college recruited and as I’ve worked to help TC Storm players that I have coached find the right school. This is just a brief look at some of the information we’ll share at our recruiting events in March.
THINGS TO DO:
TALK TO YOUR CLUB COACH
The first and most important thing you can do is have an honest, open discussion with your club coach about what level of college soccer is right for you. I have seen far too many players set their sights too high (usually NCAA DI) only to realize late in their high school career that that isn’t going to happen and they are too far behind in the recruiting process to find the right school and program for them.
START THE PROCESS EARLY
It’s ideal to give yourself as much time as possible. Starting to look and think about college as a sophomore, as hard as that may be, is a great idea. Parents: I understand how difficult it can be to get your son or daughter to think about college at 15, but taking them to a few schools and talking about college is a great way to get things moving early. Visiting/touring colleges as you travel with your family or for soccer tournaments is a great way to get them to start thinking about it.
THINGS TO NOT DO:
SEND MASS EMAILS:
Just as you would want a personalize email or letter from a coach, it’s important that you personalize your communication to each coach/school. Take the time to spell the name of the coach correctly! It’s the little things that matter.
It’s super important to provide specifics when you contact college coaches. Vague, general emails leave much to be desired. Whether you’re introducing yourself to a coach for the first time with video or emailing them to let them know where and when you’ll be playing at during your next event, provide as many specifics as possible. Let them know why you’re interested in their school and program, and if you’re emailing about event, provide field numbers, game times, jersey numbers and colors, what position(s) you typically play, and any other important details about your games.
Ben Schneweis serves as the Technical Director for TC Storm Soccer Club. He is also the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at Concordia College and has previously worked as an assistant women’s coach at North Dakota State University and the assistant men’s and women’s coach at Bellarmine University in Louisville, KY. He also has extensive club soccer coaching experience at all ages as well as administrative experience with clubs in North Dakota and Kentucky.