Recruiting 101: How To Get Traction With Your Emails To College Coaches

Michigan Big Ten

There is nothing worse in recruiting than finally getting your daughter to sit down and write emails to college coaches only to have those emails ignored. 

The most important item to evaluate before the emails are sent is to be sure your daughter is at the level of the college team, both academically and athletically. 

Second, make sure the subject line is compelling enough for the coach to open. Include things like your daughter's best event or a high score on an event. The college coaches get flooded with emails every day and can read through the “fake” information. 

Third, the emails must contain the proof needed to encourage the coach to want to respond to the email or file the email for the future if they are too young for a response due to NCAA rules.  

What kind of proof is needed in these emails to attract the college coach? Videos are the best! Videos do not lie, so to speak. I do not recommend splicing videos. Obviously, it is best to have full routines on four events in practice and training. Upgrades are also great to record in the gym. Being spotted or doing skills in the pit are fine, but it's even better if the gymnast is doing her upgrades by herself.

Academically, you will also want the gymnast to send her GPA and test scores — really anything that can prove that your daughter is academically going to be eligible. It is best if this is not written as an opinion but as a fact. 

Be sure to have your daughter write the email. It's a red flag to keep receiving parent-written emails. The college coach wants to hear directly from the heart of the gymnast. They are looking for proof that the gymnast is passionate about the sport. It is very unfortunate when you have a freshman report to campus and you see right away that they really do not want to do the sport anymore. It creates all kind of issues for your daughter and for the team.

In conclusion, be sure your daughter is at the level of the team or will be at the level down the road. Be creative in the subject line of the email. Have your daughter prove herself by her videos, not your opinion or hers. Grades and test scores matter. Allow your daughter to write her emails. 

Lastly — which I believe is the hardest part — be patient. Let your gymnast progress in her time so that when she is ready to send emails she is confident and has the content needed to be an outstanding candidate for the teams she is pursuing.  


Jill Hicks owns JH Consulting which is an college athletic advising business.  Parents hire Jill to help them navigate the college recruiting process.  Her goal is to build confidence in each of her clients so they can successfully pick the right school for both academics and athletics. Call today for a free consultation www.jhicksconsulting.com for contact info. 

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