the study of the kicking components within sports

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Recruiting Process per the Recruitees, part 1

Moving from one level of kicking up to the next is a highly competitive, very challenging, and often complex process. With National Signing Day nearly here, we take a look at the move from high school to college.

To get a sense of the key aspects of the recruiting process from the vantage point of the players, we asked kickers and punters from the Class of 2011 the following two questions:
  1. What would you say was the most beneficial advice you received before going through the recruiting process?
  2. Is there one thing you learned during the recruiting process that you wish you had known beforehand?
While everyone's unique individual circumstances led to varied answers, some common themes also emerged.  We received numerous responses, so this topic will span several posts. Following is the first batch of answers:

Trenton Martin, K, Marshall
  1. Don't go to a school just to play football, go there for your degree, because your degree will be with you for life, football will not.
  2. You have to sell yourself to college coaches. You have to prove why you are different and better than everyone else.
Dalton Botts, P, Miami (FL)
  1. I did not know anything about recruiting beforehand. I was never recruited before, besides just recently.
  2. I wish I would have known the importance of the NCAA Clearinghouse and how valuable it is to be a qualifier right out of high school. I did not find out about that until this summer of 2010.
Johnny Baddour, K
  1. Leave everything on the field when it is your time to perform, whether it be in a game or at camps/showcases. You can't go back and rewrite your stats. I knew this well enough to luckily not miss throughout the season and do relatively well during summer college camps.
  2. During camps, especially make sure that you can prepare yourself to perform at maximum potential in as little time as possible. Obviously during games you can be called onto the field at any time, but with some camps I was given no more than maybe five minutes to fully stretch and be ready to hit my best ball.
J.D. Detmer, K, Toledo
  1. I think the best advice I was given was to have faith and let it work out. After I had done everything I could when it came to recruiting and getting myself out there, there wasn’t much else to do but wait and hope. This was hard at times but with the right people telling me to just keep waiting and it will happen helped me out a lot.
  2. If I could have known one thing it would have been how to get myself out there better. I think I did a pretty good job but there were other camps and more things I could have done to get myself out there.
Wil Baumann, P, North Carolina State
  1. There was a lot of advice I received prior to the recruiting process. I know when I talked with Coach Marty Long from Northwestern University the best advice he gave me was "the place you choose to attend is not only going to affect the next four years of your life but the 40 after that". This is quite a simple statement but when you think about it the decision you make really is going to affect just about every aspect of your future. This advice helped me not to make a rash decision based on the popularity of the school, or stadium capacity, etc., but more on my own personal goals for life and which university would best help me reach them.
  2. One I took from going on recruiting visits was learning to communicate more professionally. When my recruiting process started the reality of going to play college football was still unreal to me. I felt over the course of time the reality set in and I was able to mature and realize the potential of my future. So I wish I had this attitude when my recruiting process started in order to have been better prepared for what was ahead.
Ammon Lakip, K, Clemson
  1. To make sure that every college I considered was one that I could see myself at if football was out of the picture.
  2. How important kicking camps were. I only attended one and it was late in the recruiting process.
John Wallace, K, Louisville
  1. I think the most beneficial advice I had received was probably to go to camps to get your name out in the open to college coaches.
  2. One thing I wish I knew beforehand was that you need to make early relationships with the coaches, but don't be a bother to them. Make sure you send film your junior year and senior year and don't wait too long.
Josh Hubner, P, Arizona State
  1. The most beneficial thing I was taught was to take my time, layout all my options, and go ONLY where my heart was, and also where I could see myself going to school and enjoying if I didn't play football.
  2. I honestly was so pleased with the recruiting process that I have nothing to complain about.
Andre Heidari, K, USC
  1. That I need to keep all my options open and sit down with my family and discuss what we needed to do so it would be the best for me.
  2. Since I am an early admit, I would probably tell them don’t rush into college like I did, but I had to. Also, just make friends with all the coaches, because you need to join a network and that network could help you in the future.
Dillon Wilson, K, Kansas State
  1. Attend a college of your interest directly. Most colleges have a kicking camp/time in a camp for kickers. With doing this my name spread like gets out FAST...whether that be through letters, internet, or the phone. Once you preform fairly well at a college camp, the media will know about it. I don't believe you get these same benefits by attending MASSIVE (200 kids plus) kicking competitions. And no, I'm not saying those are bad, they are just not the route I took. I attended around nine colleges this summer. Eight of them gave a card and said they were interested and would keep in touch (which they did). One offered me right on the spot! And, I am still committed to K-state till this day! Other offers were from Boise State and Colorado State.
  2. I learned that coaches are NOT looking for the kid with the best kicking ability at that very moment. They are looking for the guy with the best POTENTIAL! They are looking for a guy that will be able to grow and achieve greatness over time! They are looking for a kid they know will work hard, make good grades, and eventually pass up the kids that may actually be better than them in the short run! Coaches have an eye for these things!

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