One of the most common questions we get is “What makes you different from NCSA”? It’s a good question and one I love to answer! First and foremost, there a numerous technology companies like NCSA including Captain U, Sideline Sports, BeRecruited, Sport Recruits and many more. These are good tech companies that indeed do provide useful information in the world of recruiting. We are just different. Different in many ways, most of all is our belief in “Straight Line Recruiting” and the fact that we think recruiting should be very personalized.
Let’s start with the beginning. When I started doing this in 2016 it came at the request of parents and athletes who told me directly that the tools, systems and process of recruiting were broken. I vividly remember my first family I worked with who met me after an event I spoke at and asked for “help”! We went on to meet at a local bakery and I gave them 20+ years of knowledge on the world of recruiting, my cell number and it just took off from there!
Over time, as I explored a way to solve those same needs that more and more parents and athletes were asking, I knew that OUR approach would be service-oriented. Meaning I would be focused on meeting the parent and the student-athlete (and HS coaches) where they were in the recruiting journey. This meant weekly if not daily engagement with them and today I proudly say that we still provide that same level of service. Over time, we have added additional things to help provide meaningful information in a way that allows the parent and student-athlete to both be part of the process including partnerships and it also meant adding best in class collaboration technology used by some of the largest companies in the world to engage 24/7/365 we me personally. This also meant I need to add weekly college sports recruiting content that is tailored to the college sports recruiting process which we deliver each Saturday morning at 8am Central that, I have personally written many of these pieces or crowd sourced the best and most meaningful content for parents, athletes and coaches! This also meant we needed to have 1:1 workshops with personal player evaluation (level of play), group workshops for continual education, social media promotion, and digital “nudges” on various tasks that we knew would separate us from the competition. In short that service became our way of mentoring athletes, parents and coaches!
Technology is something that I am very familiar with having led numerous high-tech firms in and around industry, but I knew that technology in isolation isn’t the right approach to recruiting. Many young men and women need mentoring, and many parents are not comfortable with technology both of which require that personal touch to the recruiting process. Our approach was to align our beliefs of education and empowerment with technology partners and we found one in Productive Recruit. They offered us the opportunity to customize the features and capabilities that we thought were missing in the industry but also providing best in class solutions such as the ability create a free to coaches micro recruiting website for each athlete or team with everything you could image, digital check list I personally developed, access to every college coaches contact info, degree information, cost information and more, plus a CRM tool that allows the athlete, parent and even high school or club coaches to manage the process of recruitment directly, including contact information to 80,000 college coaches, social media handles, GPA and test score requirements and much more!
Know that academics are the KEY to the college experience adding tools and partnerships to help athletes/parents/coaches be better equipped to handle the ever-changing college academic requirements from the NCAA/NAIA would be important. In 2022 we partnered with leading Academic Eligibility company HONEST GAME to provide this capability to our clients too.
Simplifying the Growing complexity:
Little did we know that we would have a global pandemic, we would add the one-time transfer rule reducing scholarships by 30% for high school athletes, or go 20-months of no in-person contact for recruiting, let alone Name, Image and Likeness. This has changed the game and we knew we had to adapt with it and have done just that. We have added offerings for transfer students, we have added to our content library items to help support transfers, NIL and more. We have also added and will add additional partnerships that allow us to continue our mission of education and empowerment along the way.
Meeting the needs of the high school and club coach!
Last but not least we have been asked numerous times if we could provide help to the high school coaches and club coaches who are overwhelmed by the constant changes in the world of recruiting. In early 2022 we launched Teams Route as an offer the blends “High Touch” workshops and training for coaches and athletic administrators, combined with our “hands-on” recruiting coordinator approach and intersecting that to help each athlete, parent and coach the ability to enjoy and leverage our content library, tools and tech that we use within Recruit Route.
All in all this journey has been fun, fulfilling and rewarding but more importantly is the impact we are having with the athletes, parents and coaches we work with and doing it in a way we believe in that is different (aka “better”) from the other companies in and around this industry.
Feel free to reach out and let us know where you are at in the college sports recruiting journey! Email: firstname.lastname@example.org