By: Tom Rizzi
College Select Baseball Showcases
The late signing period is here and your family is not
sure what to do .... Who do you call?
What do you do now?
Did you spend your money on the right elite summer travel team or showcase group? Will they
be there to help you?
When the late signing period arrived last spring I was flabbergasted by the number
of calls we received and from whom!!! We, COLLEGE SELECT BASEBALL LLC, maintain a
toll free 800 number for baseball questions and inquiries. We also now have a “LIVE
HELP” feature on our website whereby you can chat “one on one” with us and get questions
answered. The bulk of our calls, obviously, come from players/parents who have participated
or have an interest in our program. Under no circumstances do we have all the answers---
however, due to our experience and years of involvement we are extremely knowledgeable
on the subject of college baseball recruiting.
This past spring we received a plethora of calls from parents/players around the country,
who were never involved in our program, asking the question---WHAT DO I DO NOW???
I found it rather peculiar that scores of parents/players from other programs were
calling us throughout the late signing period for guidance. Why us and not the programs
they had spent money and time with??? We have no problem answering the questions but it
does tell us that perhaps people are not doing their homework.
My intent here is not to discredit any showcase or recruiting program. My intent with
this article is to assist those of you entering the recruiting process in making the
correct decisions up front before it is too late. We hope that this article will do
this for you.
- When do I start the exposure process?
When a player makes the varsity AND is a contributor is when you need to start to make
sure he gets the proper amount of exposure so as to be known by college coaches, particularly
those at the schools he has an interest in. This exposure can happen through select/elite
travel teams and/or reputable showcases. Keep in mind that all select/elite travel teams
are not going to give you what you need, nor are all showcases. They key is to match your
desires with those of a certain program or showcase.
- What do I want to get out of any service/select travel
This will vary from player to player. It’s also up to you. Do you want certain colleges
to know you? Are you interested in being seen by coaches and scouts with no relation to
your specific desires? Are you interested in the pro aspect more than the college realm?
Are they, the programs, going to be there when you call? Are they going to return your calls
in an expeditious manner or will they leave you hanging? Will they give you the answers and
guidance that you need?
Some programs are pointed more to the pro aspect than that of college. Make sure you know
where their direction lies before you sign on or enroll.
- What is the background of the service/select travel team/showcase?
This is where you’ve really got to do your homework. Utilizing the Internet can be very
effective in finding the answers you require. Find out all you can about the program and
the people running it. What is their background and background of their staff—both on the
field and in their office? Are they ambitious sales people making a pitch or do they appear
to be knowledgeable about baseball and even more precisely, college recruiting? When you
visit their web site is it self-explanatory or do you have to ask too many questions? Is
their web site laden with “testimonials” which seem outlandish in terms of words and number?
More importantly, have you spoken with people who have been involved with this program? If so,
what have been their reactions? Talk to college coaches you know about them. When you visit
their site do they have other sports involved as well? When you go to a specific web site
spend time viewing all that is there--you may be surprised what you find both positive and
negative. You may see things like agents, softball, football combines, basketball combines,
etc. If I am a baseball player, do I want baseball people talking to me or a self-proclaimed
“jack of all trades”?
How long they have they been in operation? With all the programs popping up you want to be
with one that has shown longevity and success.
Costs are relative to your pocketbook and really mean nothing if you get what you expect to
get out of the program. Of course, some of the costs are outlandish and there is no way you
get the proper return on your investment. Whatever you spend you have to look at it as an
investment in the future of the high school player. Just keep in mind that a higher cost does
not mean a better product for, you, the customer.
The problem is not as easy it would seem from item 1 through 2 herein. You need to ask in
depth questions regarding the program that you have an interest in.
I have heard of some programs not accepting “No” for an answer. Even to the point where they
call the player’s mom or dad at their place of work. Does this seem right? Is this who you
want on your side?
I read a blurb in a newspaper recently for a showcase promising “over 250 college coaches
will be in attendance and will be giving scholarships to qualified players after the one
day event”. Two hundred fifty? And “giving scholarships”!!! This would certainly give me
cause for concern if I were a parent of a player looking for the right place for my son.
If you find yourself in April or May of the senior year and you don’t have anything on the
table in terms of a college situation there is a problem. Where are those you paid money to
for assistance? Why are you calling another for help? Things should have been happening way
before this stage of the game. They may not be offers from the schools you desired on your
wish list, nobody can guarantee this, but you should have some offers. This is what you paid
your good money for--- college offers
With all the “programs” that keep popping up, one must do their homework before laying down
NOBODY CAN GUARANTEE A HIGH SCHOOL PLAYER A SCHOLARSHIP! AND DON’T EVER FORGET IT !!
100% scholarships are extremely rare. If you’re a position player, and between academics and
baseball you’re offered a deal in the 50% range you have a great deal. If you are a pitcher
the sky can be the limit but even this is not necessarily so. Also, don’t go looking down your
nose at JUCO or Division II and III programs. They can put together financial packages that
are in some cases better than you will get at a Division I program.
Find a program you have faith in from the very beginning, based on your research and study,
and stay with them! BUT YOU MUST DO YOUR HOMEWORK !!!
To Contact Tom Rizzi and College Select Baseball at the following:
College Select Baseball, LLC