Added Time: Our Monthly College Search Newsletter
September Update: YOU Control Your Performance & Potential!
With the beginning of the fall season and “Friday Night Lights” across the country, this month is a reminder that wherever you are in terms of your athletic profile (are you an All-State athlete, a varsity starter, sitting on the bench, etc.) YOUR ability/performance level is SOMETHING THAT YOU CONTROL. Too many times in the recruiting process (or in the course of a season), young people treat their performance level as an unchangeable given. Do not make this mistake!
There are several pathways to making HUGE changes in your athletic performance. Let’s evaluate keys to success and some potential pitfalls to avoid as well!
Improve your overall physical capacity (strength/speed/power/endurance)
- The fitter you are, the more consistent your performance will be and the more confidence you can bring to competition!
- Building core strength and endurance can have a major impact on improving your technique in competition and making training sessions more fun!
- Align your increased training load with the demands of your sport!
- Make sure your physical training does not conflict with the need to peak for important competitions! (don’t leave your “A” game 2 miles down a highway the night before a big game)
- Periodization is your friend. There are times to “go for it” increasing your physical capacity and times to focus on particular areas that may not be progressing due to other factors.
- Competent strength & conditioning coaches are an amazing resource! Work with your current coaches to get the information you need and avoid creating an “information buffet” where you may not get the right information at the right time.
Improve your technical skill, speed and power (or efficiency depending on your sport)
- Great athletes do not restrict their training to team practices. YOU are responsible for improving your technical skill and speed!
- Average athletes tend to practice the techniques they have already mastered. Future All-Americans keep building on their strengths, but ALSO focus on improving areas where they are less comfortable.
- Private coaching is not as important as commitment to training – you can be your own technical coach IF you have the discipline. It’s not a money issue, it’s a commitment issue!
- When you are learning a new skill, sacrifice speed to build technique. But you have not MASTERED a skill until you can perform the technique at an elite level in every way!
- Prioritize building the skills that can make the biggest difference in your production in competition!
Improve your mental game
- Your resilience in the face of adversity, ability to raise your performance level under pressure and ability to inspire your team (including yourself) are the biggest determining factors of success!
- Knowing “which game you are playing” can be the key to winning the big ones, getting the most out of your athletic experiences, and building the lifelong relationships that are the real lasting victories!
- Meditation, goal setting, visualization, and many other techniques can build your mental game. Great athletes do not just hope their technique or fitness improves while not having a specific plan, and mental development is no different!
If you want to raise your performance level, be more successful NOW, and change your recruiting profile – making progress in these 3 areas are how you do it. All the recruiting advising, video production, etc, is only as good as your underlying performance levels. Change your game, change your stars!
As always, if you are interested in learning more about individualized or institutional consulting to elevate your college search, check out our services here! You can make an initial appointment through the link on our homepage! School administrators and counselors access our free resources, appointments and programs for school collaboration here.
For more information, contact Dave Morris, College Counselor & CEO, College Athletic Advisor, email@example.com or phone: (719) 248-7994
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This month I want to address an assertion about athletic recruiting and college searches that I hear all too often, even from folks who should know better. It was distilled down perfectly in this Facebook comment by an admissions professional:
THIS IS NOT TRUE. So many young people miss out on reaching their potential because they listen to folks expressing opinions like this.
In fact, coaches are unlikely to “find you” even if you are “good enough” – or at least the right coaches may not. There are a multitude of reasons, and they vary by sport, but some are universal!
- There are literally millions of high school sports participants, competing against each other in an endless variety of leagues, state tournaments, “national” events, and other environments. Access to these events can be limited by money, social connections, geography, school size, etc. so there is no uniform standard to compare the pool of talent you are recruiting. On top of this, college coaching staffs are limited in size. There is no way to assess every prospect, and not enough quality data to rank all of them using analytics or technology. For example, in the NFL, the key is identifying a great Quarterback. They have a nearly infinite amount of money, large staffs of paid scouts, and high-quality film of every prospect at the high school level or beyond. And the most successful QB this century was drafted in the 6th round.
- We, as a species, are not very good at assessing potential! Think of all the big-time college coaches who passed on Jimmy Garoppolo, Ben Roethlisberger, Josh Allen, Trey Lance, and Carson Wentz, just to name quarterbacks who started in the NFL last season after being passed over by every single FBS football program. Just like any smart executive will tell you hiring is hard and littered with mistakes, recruiting is too.
- You are more than just your athletic talent! It really does not matter whether “a coach” contacts you. You need to connect with the RIGHT coach. One who will inspire you to reach beyond the potential you can imagine… on and off the field. Also, one who is at an institution that fits your goals beyond athletics and sets you up for success. You are not signing a pro contract; you are choosing an educational institution to be your springboard to elevating your lifetime potential!
So, how do you make that connection with the RIGHT coaches? The first step is to put together your recruiting toolkit. You need an academic/athletic resume that puts your academic and athletic information at the coach’s fingertips with no additional clicking! You need video or your competitive data (track times? UTR? Whatever is appropriate for your sport!) accessible instantly from your initial email. You also need to reach out to coaches in a targeted, personal way. This means using the "5A College Search process" to identify coaches you want to connect with by name and doing at LEAST enough research to explain to THEM why the college is a fit for you beyond athletics.
Of course, College Athletic Advisor helps prospective students and families do this every day, but you CAN do it yourself. It is simply a matter of time and your goals. If you are looking to stay local and already know the coaches in your area – make the connection! For students aspiring to highly selective schools or who want to search for great fit institutions outside their home areas, expert insights can be well worth the investment!
online course guides you to create the keys to a successful college search!
- an academic/athletic resume
- impactful highlight video & a video channel that allows coaches to evaluate you in depth
- an introductory email that gets opened and gives you the opportunity to connect with college coaches
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