Summer is often the most important time of year in the softball recruiting process. This time of year is when many college coaches do the majority of their recruiting and is the best opportunity for you to make an impression.
So you want to play in college? Here is a list of things you can do to get ready for the important summer travel ball season.
- Put together a list of schools you are interested in
It is important to have an idea of the type of school you want to attend. Do you want to stay close to home? Would you rather be in a big city, or in a smaller college town? How big do you want your college to be? What is your anticipated major? These are all questions you should ask yourself in order to narrow down the almost 1,700 collegiate programs that offer softball to a more focused list. It is important to do this research and know what you want so you can better target schools to communicate with throughout the summer and the rest of the recruiting process.
- Contact the schools on your list
Colleges need to know who you are and where you are going to be in order to find you and watch you play. Once you have your list of schools, email them and give them your schedule as well as a link to your online profile. They want to watch your video, see your transcript and look at your showcase/camp schedule in order to determine if they will be able/willing to come see you play over the summer.
- Make sure your information is online and updated
You need to make it as easy as possible for college coaches to learn about you. If you don’t have a video, you need to make one so college coaches can watch it and easily decide if they want to see you play live. Make sure you have an updated online profile with all of your information in one place to make it easy for college coaches to do their research. A college coach will not come see you play if they don’t have an idea of where you are athletically and academically.
- Look up college camps to attend
If you are playing PGF, then you are likely already involved in some competitive showcases and tournaments where college coaches will be in attendance. If you are far enough along in your recruiting process and have been able to narrow your list of schools down to ten or less, then it might be a good idea to pick a few of your top schools and attend their summer camps. Remember, you need to contact the coach ahead of time and let them know you are coming so you can get on their radar!
- Get in shape
Most states play high school softball in the spring. If that’s the case, then you likely could be in pretty good shape from playing a ton of games in a short amount of time. However, many times the high school competition is not at the same level as the travel competition during the summer. If this is true for you, you need to make sure you are finding a way to get some hitting and fielding in against pitchers and hitters that are of the same caliber you will see over the summer. Also, sometimes at travel tournaments you can play three games in a day or more, and travel teams also often work out very hard during practice. If you are on a travel team like that, it can be hard to maintain the same fitness level during high school season to have the stamina to make it through long practices and long days with multiple games. Make sure you are working out to make up the difference so you don’t miss a beat when travel season starts