Social media and the internet have permanently changed how recruiting works in college sports. The NCAA has rules and regulations in place that restricts how many phone calls coaches can make to recruits. The current rule stands at unlimited phone calls, text messages and direct messages are permitted after a prospect completes his sophomore season.
“I think it’s huge….More than ever social media is a must have for a College Coach,” said one college coach to HDM, explaining the way recruiting tactics have changed over the years. “YouTube is something all kids should do for coaches.”
With the rapid growth in technology, a prospect is able to log onto Twitter and Facebook on their mobile phones and receive all types of messages from coaches at any given time.
We are also living in what is called the “YouTube Era” where you can almost type in any word or phrase in the search menu and get a result. For some prospects that are trying to get noticed by recruiters YouTube can be used as a tool to attract certain coaches. YouTube is probably the fastest and easiest way for an athlete to go from being unnoticed to creating a name for themselves.
“It plays a big role – but ultimately I like what my eyes see better- highlights have and will deceive” said one coach to how much YouTube plays a factor in evaluating a player.
A player can often find themselves swamped with alerts and messages on twitter from fans and coaches about coming to their respected schools. A message can be ignored; it’s up to the players to decide which ones they want to respond to if any.
During the 2011-2012 prep season while playing basketball for Worcester Academy, Rene Castro deactivated both his Twitter and Facebook account.
‘Yeah I was focusing too much of my time (to social media), so I deleted both for schoolwork and bball,” Castro explained how crazy social media can get for a student-athlete. “It was hard at first but then I got use to it, I have them back because I am able to manage my time on social networks, workout, and do school work.”
“Love YouTube,” said one coach on feelings about social media and internet use to recruit. “Even if it’s just to keep other coaches on the staff in the loop, Facebook lets us see what they are doing socially, Acceptable vs. Unacceptable behavior, Very helpful.”
Twitter, Facebook and Skype have also been used as ways for student-athletes to announce their college decisions in recent years. The state of social media and the internet has become more than just a way to connect with family and friends, it’s almost a way of life now, and some of us can’t live or keep up with the times without it.
no coaches names were listed in this article per request