4 Questions Parents Should Ask College Coaches During the Recruiting Process

4 Questions Parents Should Ask College Coaches During the Recruiting Process 4 Questions Parents Should Ask College Coaches During the Recruiting Process

The recruiting process is hard on recruits, but it can also be daunting for parents. You ultimately want your child to be independent and make their own choices about schools they would like to attend, but remember that you can play a role in the decision-making process by being involved and asking coaches questions.

Related: Parents Know Best? College Recruiting Advice From Parents to Parents

At the end of the day, where your child decides to attend college and play their sport is their own decision. Here are some questions you can ask coaches to help your child make the best call:

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1. What is your recruiting process like?

In order to help determine whether a college coach is the right fit for your child, it is important to ask about the recruiting process. College coaches typically use a four-step process when recruiting athletes:

1. Evaluate prospects using scouting reports and/or game film.

2. Contact prospects via phone, email, or text message.

3. Invite prospects to visit the campus and/or attend a camp or clinic.

4. Offer a scholarship to the prospect.

Although most recruiting processes follow this route, it’s always smart to know specifically what kind of process you’re signing up for–and it also tells you a lot about the coach.

2. What is your coaching philosophy?

Every coach has a different answer to this question, but there are some common themes. Most coaches believe in creating a positive and supportive environment for their athletes, fostering a love for the sport, and helping athletes reach their full potential. Some coaches also emphasize the importance of developing teamwork and sportsmanship. 

Related: 2 Green Lights and 2 Red Lights For Parents in the Recruiting Process

Other coaches believe that the most important thing is to make your athletes better people than they would have been without sports. This can be done in many ways, like setting a good example and teaching life lessons through coaching philosophy, or helping athletes understand how to deal with adversity. 

No matter what approach an athlete's coach takes, it is important that a coach is able to establish a connection with their athletes so that you can rest assured that they will want to do their best for your child. 

3. How do you develop athletes?

There is no one answer to this question as different coaches will have different methods and philosophies. However, some things that parents should look for include whether the coach has a structured plan for practices and player development, whether the coach is able to adapt and change as needed, and whether the coach is open to feedback from players and parents. Also, parents should ask the coach how he or she plans to keep players motivated and engaged throughout the season.

Related: Our Parents’ 4 Key Jobs in the Athletic Recruitment Process

There are many different coaching styles and each coach will have his or her own unique approach, but in general players should look for a coach who is passionate about the game and cares about developing young athletes.

4. What is your team culture like?

Some important questions to consider when asking a college coach about their team culture are:

-What are the team's core values?

-How do you and your staff work to foster a positive team culture?

-What kind of team unity and bonding activities do you do?

-How do you handle conflict within the team?

-How do you encourage player development both on and off the field?

-How does your team demonstrate their commitment to winning?

-What are some common traits that have helped your players succeed both on and off the field at this school?

Related: The 3 Roles of Athletes, Parents, and High School Coaches in the Recruiting Process

In order for a coach to be successful in creating a positive team culture, they must first be able to answer these questions in a way that is satisfactory to you as a parent. A coach should also be able to provide examples of how their team culture has helped their players succeed in the past, and how it will continue to do so in the future. Don’t be afraid to ask for specific examples of their team culture in action!

Your child will ultimately make the decision that is best for them, but as a parent you can do your part to assist in the decision-making process when it comes to picking a program. While there are many factors that go into choosing the right coach, these are some of the most important ones to consider.

Have an idea for a story or a question you need answered? Email us at [email protected]

* Originally published on February 8, 2023, by Kelly Wick

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