by: Bob Howdeshell
High School Baseball Web
Recently there was a post in the "Recruiting" message board forum
that mentioned the reality of recruiting.
I found that to be an interesting phrase. My thoughts are that what one
player and his family perceives to be the recruiting reality may be
completely different for another.
I talk to hundreds of families each year about their recruiting
experiences and stories. Many are similar but each has its own wrinkle
The normal assumption is that the big time top 200 prospect has the
easiest time in recruiting and that the player with lower level college
potential has the toughest road in the recruiting process. I have found this
to be "not necessarily true."
While it is true that the top prospects have their choice of several
scholarship offers, there are disappointments and problems as well. Even
the top prospects do not get solid (or any) offers from their favorite
school, at times. This may be due to that school not needing a player
at that position, they may have signed several pitchers the previous
year, all of which have performed well.
Of course the opposite happens as well ....... A top prospect has a favorite
school, the program makes him a very nice offer, from the very start, the
player verbally commits and they all live happily ever after.
Next comes the player that I consider the mid-range. He is a legitimate
college prospect. Maybe he fits at the DI level or an NAIA school or a
quality D2 program.
More often than not the mid-range player will end up with a couple of scholarship offers.
Maybe a mid to lower DI or DII, or an NAIA school and maybe a junior college
program or two. Stories about mid-range players that have 15 or 20 offers are more often than
For the good high school player that is a marginal college prospect the
reality of recruiting may be that he does not hear anything from a college
coach until the mid point of his senior high school season. Many times this
caliber of player will receive one scholarship offer from a local school or
maybe he is invited to walk-on. The late period (after April) is the time that
many of the NCAA DIII programs, the lower NAIA and some junior colleges really
turn up the heat in their recruiting process.
Many times the player is a "big fish in a small pond." His parents, peers
and others all feel that he is a future professional baseball player.
We have all met folks with larger than "reality" opinions about their player's
abilities and college baseball potential, that may not match the rest of the
So what is the "reality of recruiting?" It depends on the player's abilities, the needs of
college programs that have seen him play. What type of summer program he has played in,
the geographic location in which he lives and numerous other reasons.
The reality of recruiting is that it is different for every player.