One of the most stressful times in the lives of parents and their children is if they go through the athletic recruiting process. It doesn’t matter if you are a Division I recruit or someone hoping to play sports at the NAIA level, it is tough weighing out the benefits of all the schools involved. Not only are sports important, academics is what should make or break the decision.
I feel strongly that everyone who is going through this process should be humble the entire time. What I mean by that is that it is a journey and during that time, you need to do what you can to learn as much as possible. The more you learn, the better chance that you have of knowing what is going on and helping your child during such a stressful time.
I am not afraid to admit that I do not know everything about the athletic recruiting process. But I do try to get my hands on everything possible as well as speak with coaches and respected experts who I feel can help increase my recruiting knowledge. So if you are a parent, why would you not do the same?
It doesn’t matter if your son or daughter was offered a scholarship when they were a freshman in high school, do you know everything there is about the school that offered? What is the background of the coaches? Is this school a powerhouse in the sport that they offered for? How can I publicize this offer into possibly getting more scholarships? These type of questions are a big reason why I think the recruiting process for families is always a learning process.
I do want to say that you can read as many books as you want, read this site everyday, and talk to coaches as much as you can but it is impossible to know every single situation about the schools that are recruiting you. Unless you have a chance to see the recruiting board for all of the schools, then you really will never have a good feel for where your child stands with these schools.
What also makes it tough is that as a parent, no matter how hard you try, you are still bias during the athletic recruiting process. I have talked about it before but it is impossible to take away the bias you have and look at the situation realistically. This is the child that you raised and I can only imagine how difficult it is to take that out of the equation.
Anyways, going back to the original subject, it is important to learn as much as you can during this process. For me, I feel most stressed when I do not understand what is going on. I believe most parents get overly stressed when they are unsure about the recruiting process and what is going on. That is why I feel there will never, ever be a time where you should feel like you know exactly what is going on. You should always be humble during the recruiting process and realize that there is more information and things to learn.
Even if you have been going through it for three years, unless your son or daughter has made a final decision and it looks like that is where they will sign, never turn down an opportunity to learn because you think you know it all. As I said earlier, I believe there is no way that one person can no everything. I sure don’t so why would parents think that they do?
And when you think the recruiting process is over after signing a National Letter of Intent, keep the information that you used to study the other programs. You never know when the day will come that either this child wants to transfer and look at the other schools you researched back in the day or you have another child about to go through it.