Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Freshman Recruiting/Training Timeline...Time to Get Ready...Part One
Do college scouts and recruiting organizations really look at freshman? Well, have you ever gone in a department store and have a salesperson ask you. "May I help you?", and your reply is , "No thanks, I'm just looking." These early looks at 9th and in some cases 8th graders are similar to this analogy. The recruiting timeline is getting earlier and earlier. Depending on your son's projectable talent and abilities, getting them in a recruiting database early on may help your son get on the lists of the invitation only showcases. This is also a time to get used to the camps. Find out what weaknesses your son needs to work on and what strengths he needs to hone. Bottom line, he still needs to play and play well to be on the radar of most high profile organizations like PG and Team One, so be realistic...talent and attitude is still the gauge used.
The following timeline details how and when to prepare your son for the baseball recruiting opportunities that he has in front of him. Parents…learn from our mistakes. This outline is the result of hundreds of interviews and correspondence from parents, recruiters and scouts.
First, we must reiterate that as much as we love baseball, your player is going nowhere if he doesn't have the grades. Forget any and all perceptions that "if your son is good, it won’t matter what their grades are"…That’s totally false!!! For instance, in California, most Pac 10, Big West and WCC schools want a 3.2 GPA or better and a 1400 SAT score. The new APR standards that the NCAA have imposed has changed a lot…for the better in our opinion. Let’s face it…They are STUDENT Athletes! Start them off on the right frame of mind as freshman. The habits they learn early, they will carry with them the rest of their lives.
September-October· You (the student) are in a new environment and your first few months are for adjusting to your new school and new friends.
· If baseball is your passion, then freshman year is the ideal time to start getting serious.
· Take advantage of the daily access to school facilities and long toss with friends after school, hit in the cage, or field ground balls.
· Utilize the track facilities, football bleachers etc, and get into leg shape and build endurance
· Play on a travel fall ball team. If you are a pitcher, limit your innings to 3 per week.
November· Depending on where you live, you may have to find a new venue to throw, field and hit. Southern states, continue your fall Sept-Oct. program. Northern states, move your program indoors or locate a batting cage that will allow you to work out in the tunnels for a discount.
· Most batting facilities have hitting and pitching instructors. This is a good time to hone your skills with a professional.
· Seek out a winter college camp or underclass showcase. For many of you, this will be your first camp or showcase, so I hope the resources we have on Rounding Third, will help steer you in the right direction. There are many freshman outdoor showcases and camps in Florida, Texas, Arizona and California. However, there are also many indoor college camps at many schools in the larger conferences, SEC, Big 10, Big 12, etc. Go on the web site of that particular school close to you and click camps on their athletic web site. See the link to the right on Division 1, 2 and 3 college web sites.
December· Step your program up the first two weeks of the month. Work harder than you ever have…Then rest the last two weeks. Have fun…It is Christmas by the way…
· How are your grades????
January· Step your training program back up at the level you were working on in the first two weeks of December and get ready for spring baseball try-outs. In the south, try-outs will start in mid to late January. In the Northern states, your coach will start working you out indoors. Get ready for a lot of running, weight training and stretching. Aren't you glad you were already in shape from a fall work-out program?
· This is the High School Season and you will thank us for the training program we outlined for you in September-January. Daily practice, fielding drills, outfield drills, scrimmages etc., can be hard on your arm. The long toss work-outs you did in fall (you did do them right?), pay big dividends in spring.
· Work hard and smart in try-outs. Coaches like hustle, and players that finish first in drills. If you stuck with the program we have outlined, this will not be a problem for you.
May - July/August· Take a week or two off after your high school season ends and your summer season begins. Rest your arm , but run and stay in shape.
· After the rest, find a travel team try-out in your area and pick the most competitive team with an aggressive tournament or league schedule. Playing with the best and against the best will make you better. Start researching summer camps and showcases via college web sites (At right under Useful Sites), and programs like Perfect Game and Team One (also at right)
June - August
· Sign up and go to those camps and showcases I mentioned. Read my previous posts. If you want to get seen, you must be present at these camps and various high profile tournaments. Recruiters will not come to you. You must go to them.
· If you want my opinion on what college camps and what showcases are worth going to, comment on this post and I will reply.
More posts on Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors tomorrow!