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Recruiting 101
Countdown: There's Life After November
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November is here, and the early signing period is around the corner. Each year, student athletes scramble to find a college to sign with, while coaches look to lock down recruits. Most families begin to feel nervous around this time, and some even go as far as "freaking out". The general feeling is there will be no roster spots available if student athletes do not sign during the early signing period. Don't worry - there is life after November.

At SFA, we know that only a small percentage of the top players actually sign in November. Early signing can provide peace-of-mind, but waiting to commit until after the early signing period can open up a world of opportunities that were not available earlier. A number of college coaches are recruiting the same top players, and once they don't sign them, they continue to move down their recruiting lists. Opportunities open up for players at all levels. Players who sign early with their third or fourth choice could potentially miss out on a chance to play for their first or second choice. Settling on a school in order to be done by the early signing period often leads to unhappy college athletes - and ultimately leads to transferring.

Three- and four-star recruits are not the only ones that sign after the early period - some of our blue chip clients are also waiting until spring to sign. There are several reasons for this. A number of coaches that have more than one spot for a recruiting class opt to keep one of their spots open until the spring. They understand the benefit of waiting to see how "things pan out," and they also know that some of the top talent will hold out. Some of the players that have already committed will choose not to play as many tournaments since they have accomplished their goal of committing to a college. That gives unsigned players an opportunity to enter more tournaments and to showcase their skills to coaches.

A lot of college coaches are looking to bring in international athletes in January, and many of them are recruiting the same international players - which can make even more roster spots and scholarship money available after January. Transfers can open up roster spots as well. We selected a random pool of 25 D-I schools and reviewed their rosters. 23 men's teams and 15 women's teams had players on the roster that transferred. This shows that rosters are continually changing.

If you don't sign in November, do not panic. Continue your recruiting process as you have - and make sure to maintain your line of communication with the coaches at the schools that you're interested in. There's no need to rush. As the old saying goes, "good things come to those who wait". You never know what doors may open up for you after the November signing period.

 

Ivy Stylings

Tomorrow, the Countdown brings you to both Texas and upstate New York. We hear from 5-Star senior Karim Arem of Houston, Texas, who has committed to the Cornell Big Red. Check out that story - and all the other great stories we have for you on the Countdown to Signing Day!

 
 

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Wilson Tennis is proud to sponsor the Recruiting 101 series of articles at TennisRecruiting.net.

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More Recruiting 101 Articles

12-Sep-2016
What Every Player Should Know Before Joining a College Team
David Mullins spent sixteen years competing as a college tennis player and coach at the highest levels. As he reflects on his career, he notes that college tennis has changed dramatically since he first got involved. Mullins talks about these differences - and offers a list of the realities and expectations of college athletics to students and parents.

12-Aug-2016
Amateur Issues
One of the principles that college sports was founded upon is that of amateur competition. In the eyes of all three collegiate governing bodies, student-athletes participating in collegiate athletics should be amateurs. Over the years, the line that defines amateur and professional has become less clear. Recruiting expert Dede Allen takes a comprehensive look at the issue.

29-Jun-2016
Recruiting Terms and Calendar for 2016-17
July marks the beginning of another recruiting year. Recruiting expert Dede Allen is back to review important dates on the calendar for all ages - and she also has a primer on basic recruiting terms.

 
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About Ross Greenstein

Ross Greenstein is President and CEO of Scholarship for Athletes, an independent consulting firm that assists high school athletes and their families throughout the scholarship search and negotiation process. He is a graduate of the University of Florida where he played NCAA division one tennis and made the SEC all-academic team. He was also a former Minnesota State Tennis Champion in high school. Ross can be contacted at [email protected].

 
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Page updated on Wednesday, August 10, 2016
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