Many people believe that Official Visits are the most important part of the recruiting process, but I disagree. When we were going through the process with our son Coy, we took 15 unofficial visits. The reason for so many was simple. I wanted him to see as many types of college campuses and facilities as possible. Also, I wanted him to meet different types of coaches and players at the schools who were recruiting him. That way, when he found the right fit (in his case it was Stanford University), his heart would tell him so. That’s right, it can be as simple as getting that warm, fuzzy feeling in the pit of his/her chest that tells an athlete when they’ve found the right school.
You also may be unaware that college coaches can give you up to 3 FREE tickets to one of their home sporting events. And yes, the Wire family saw 15 big-time college football games. All I did was pick up the phone and call the college coaches and asked for tickets. For all they knew, I had the next Emmitt Smith in my living room. What was it going to cost them to find out? 3 free tickets to a football game. They always put us on the sideline for the pre-game warmup which was EXTREMELY important to me as Coy’s father. Why?
I wanted him to see up close how ripped, athletic, fast and strong D-I running backs are. Then while driving home from the visit if he would’ve said, “Hey Dad I’m sorry but I could NEVER be that D-I running back,” I would have said, “That’s ok son, I still love you. We’re just looking at the wrong schools.” It could turn out to be a life changing moment for you and your athlete.
After you have figured out where you or your athlete might be able to play one day, you can then focus your efforts on visiting colleges where they can play and NOT visit schools where they will NEVER play!
To learn more about Unofficial Visits and how to set them, check out our “Student-Athlete & College Recruiting” handbook. It contains all the information and help you will need.