The recruiting process is an exciting time. It can also be daunting and intimidating. You want to impress coaches and the student-athletes but an important part of the process is finding the right school for you. The goal is to find a place you will be given the environment, the right coach, and the right team to thrive and be the best student-athlete you can be.
In order to find the right home for you, you have to ask the right questions. The first step is to do your homework. Before any phone call or visit you need to know everything you can about the school, the coaching staff, and the team. This gives you the chance to show the coaches you came prepared and interested in the opportunity. It also helps you avoid asking the simple, straight-forward questions that could be answered on the website. That way you can get right into the nitty-gritty of the conversation.
Make sure you are paying attention and listening to the coaches answers. They will cover a lot and you don't want to ask a question they already answered.
It is important to come prepared and ready to learn everything you can. The coaches want to see you are interested and invested. Asking those hard-hitting questions could make you stand out when it comes to a position on the team or a scholarship.
Here are some great questions to ask a coach while they are recruiting you:
- What does a typical day look like for the athletes?
- What is the lifting and conditioning program look like?
- Do you have captain practices?
- What positions are you looking to fill?
- Where do you see me fitting in on this team?
- How many players are you looking to recruit for this class?
- What does off-season look like?
- What are you looking for in an ideal athlete?
- What are the summer obligations?
- How is the team chemistry?
- What are your expectations for in-coming freshman?
- What can I do to get playing time my first year?
- How would you describe your coaching style?
- What are your strengths as a team?
- What are your weaknesses as a team?
- What are you goals for this program?
- Where do you see it in the future?
A lot of these questions help you get a feel of the coaches and the type of team they run. What the questions show the coach is that you are looking to add value to the team.
Also, coaches want you to be happy outside of the sport, so be sure to ask about how the team interacts away from the locker room. Always be sure to ask your coach about academics. If they are important to your coach, you'll have a solid support system if you struggle with difficult college classes.
Here are non-sport related questions that are also important to ask:
- How does the living situation work?
- Will I room with another in-coming freshman?
- How will I be supported academically?
- What is the process like if we have to miss classes for games?
- What is the teams GPA?
- Are there any majors that are not allowed?
- Can I go abroad for school-sponsored study?
You will also want to get a feel of your potentially teammates. Ask them what their typically day looks like, what the lifting and conditioning entails, any advice on the recruiting process, and anything that is important to you. Remember, these are the kids you will be playing with!
At the end of the conversation always ask about next steps. If it is a place you really want to be ask about what you can do to be apart of the team. There are power in questions. It shows you care, it shows you want to be there, and it gives you an accurate feel of the coach and team. Don't be afraid to ask the hard-hitting questions.