Volleyballmag.com Article

Chances are, as I start what will be WordPress blog #1, blog #3 in total, that if you’re reading this, you already have a clue who I am and the wide variety of interests I’ve got.

One of the biggies is obviously volleyball.  I was able to publish this with Lee Feinswog and the best online magazine for volleyball (www.volleyballmag.com).  The link for those guys and the full article is: https://volleyballmag.com/jc-recruiting-051518/

There’s good stuff there, Maynard, better still once you get to the fall and the start of NCAA season especially.  I’m hoping I can convince them to let me cover some NJCAA stuff once we get to August.

And now to the teaser…:

I must confess, and I know other two-year college (TYC) coaches who feel the same, that there are times I want to strangle coaches from NCAA Division I and D-II schools. 

You’ve seen those scenes in movies where Person A is talking, Person B punches them, then suddenly it turns out that Person B was daydreaming while they smile and nod. Now you know the mood. You see, every conversation with a D-I coach comes down to how busy they are with recruiting and don’t have time to go on vacation or buy scalped tickets to see Hamilton. 

If only they understood what a TYC coach goes through …

So I’m going to take this opportunity to tell you all about it.

With a TYC, the obvious difference is the critical one: Instead of having athletes in your program for four years, you only get them for two. With basic math, that means that instead of recruiting 25 percent of your roster annually, your turnover is 50 percent, and that’s before outside factors enter in, such as academic ineligibility, injury, or just plain quitting.  That’s twice the turnover and the thing is, the roster size required is usually the same (14-16). Instead of recruiting three or four per year, we’re recruiting seven or eight.  Right there, twice the work.

I’ll take a tangent for the second point here. Twice the work. That’s important because I don’t know many D-I coaches at this point who have full-time responsibilities other than supervising a program with assistant coaches, maybe a recruiting coordinator, and a director of volleyball operations to help out. Even low-budget D-I schools will bring in a grad student to be a third staff member. And don’t forget volunteer coaches.

All of this means that you’ve got a bunch of full-time people training kids and recruiting those three or four players per year.

At the TYC level, few people get to coach full-time, certainly not at the NJCAA D-II or D-III levels. Almost everyone has a second on-campus job that accounts for 60-80 percent of their employment, or, as is often the case, they have another job. Ditto for assistant coaches. Looking at the region, for example, that I coach in, no one is full-time. 

So you can see where my crankiness comes from.

Then you get the next problem. Recruiting for a D-I program is pretty easy. Look at the height, send them info if they are 6-foot-2 or taller, skip courts at national qualifiers if you don’t see anyone taller than 6-foot playing. Certainly there are some women playing at D-II or D-III, or in the the NAIA and NJCAA who are athletically gifted and committed enough to play Division I volleyball, but they aren’t common. With those other groups though, once the D-I athletes are off the board, all us other schools are looking at the same players and then it’s time to get down to the essentials of recruiting.

But, wait, there’s another problem (boy, do these pile up). 

Most two-year schools lack “prestige,” so that when you contact various clubs, the chance of a response isn’t good. The best I ever received was, “We don’t permit our athletes to play at JuCos. They are better than that.” Another didn’t acknowledge a kid we signed, but when she developed and moved on to play for a D-I school, suddenly she was front and center on that club’s webpage. 

OK, now we can get on to the critical stuff. 

How do you recruit kids into your program given the disadvantages I’ve listed above?  There are five that I think are universal and apply to all TYC. After that, the challenge for TYC coaches becomes to figure out the specific advantages of your own program.

The rest is at:  https://volleyballmag.com/jc-recruiting-051518/  …seriously, check it out!


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