ID CAMPS AND SOCCER SHOWCASES
It’s safe to say that if you are looking to play soccer at the collegiate level, you should be attending ID camps and soccer showcases. Both of these are intended to help you get noticed and evaluated by coaches, so attending them can improve your chances of playing in college. College coaches will utilize popular summer ID camps to rev up their recruiting pool, so look into the best ones to play in.
The big question for us is therefore, “which ID camps and showcase tournaments can help me get on a coach’s radar and then hopefully recruited by college coaches?” You should be attending camps at the schools that you feel will be a good fit both academically and physically. You do not want to be wasting precious time and money on a camp just because you think you must attend a ton of them. For showcases, check the website to see which college programs have confirmed attendance so you know whether the coaches you’re interested in will be there. Most importantly, email coaches to let them know you will be there.
It would help if you started searching for showcases during your freshman and sophomore years of high school. It’s essential to start early because the competition in soccer has grown so much over the years. Some showcases open up for registration five to six months in advance and are a first-come-first-serve basis. So, you want to be prepared and register months in advance.
After camps and showcases, make sure to send the coaches a handwritten thank you note. This written note will show initiative, personality, and interest in their specific program.
Related: College ID Camps and How to Crush It
Filling out a soccer questionnaire might not sound like fun, but it’s a must. All of the NCAA divisions and most schools in other divisions have questionnaires on the team website for prospective athletes to fill out. You need to fill these out to get added to the college coach’s system. The questionnaire is one of their primary forms of communication, so it will show college coaches that you are interested in their soccer program.
Highlight videos are vital to the soccer recruiting process. Coaches have limited time and resources, so videos are a resource for them to see and evaluate your skill set, even when not attending a game in person. They can also use your highlight video to compare and contrast you to other players. This is your chance to capture the coaches’ attention by creating a quality video with your best plays. The highlight video should be 3-5 minutes long and include ~20 clips of game action and technique for both field players and goalies. The rule of thumb is if the video is longer than 5 minutes you will risk the coach losing interest.
COMMUNICATION WITH COACHES
Coaches do not want to communicate with your parents. They want to talk to you. Let’s face it, you’re the one who is going to be playing for the coach for the next four years, not your parents. You need to respond to the coaches promptly. They want potential recruits to act like an adult, and they want to see that their recruits are responsible. So fill out your paperwork and communicate with the coaches promptly.
Do not forget how important grades can be in the college recruiting process. Keeping your GPA up will make you even more attractive to coaches. A solid GPA will mean that the coaches and staff will not have to worry about you as much. If your grades are on then edge, the coach will have to push harder to get you a roster spot.