The recruiting process can be very intimidating for a 16-to-18-year-old, and that’s not something to shy away from. It isn’t easy to know what you want at a young age, and it isn’t any easier to find a place where you can project yourself being for four years. With no prior experience of the process, it can be difficult for a recruit to know what to ask a college lacrosse coach.
With the boom that we’re seeing in lacrosse participation and the growth of offerings at the college level, it is important to have a plan when it comes to your interactions with college lacrosse coaches. You want to be at a place that will give you the experience you want academically, athletically, and socially. Doing your research is very important, but it is equally important to ask the right questions throughout the process.
Here are some questions you might want to ask a college lacrosse coach when you’re being recruited:
What to Ask a College Lacrosse Coach
1. Why do you think I may be a good fit for your program? Where do you see me fitting in? This is an important question to ask, because it is a big picture question for both you and the program you are being recruited to. It shows how interested the coach is in you as a potential student-athlete, and it also helps chart a path for your future. From here, you can formulate an idea of where this coach sees you in their program, and it can also show if the program is really very interested in you. From here you can ask follow-up questions about recruiting class size, number of players at the position, and future trajectory of the program.
2. What resources are available for student-athletes outside of athletics? What happens if I have a problem in a class or in the dorms? What academic resources are available, and what do we do as a program in regards to academic tracking? Now we’re talking about big picture stuff. Lacrosse is important, but this is meat-and-potatoes-type question that parents will want the answer to. You might be in college playing lacrosse, but you are there for an education. Parents trust coaches with their most precious cargo, and they want to know their child will be safe while they are in someone else’s care. This is a great question, because if programs don’t have a plan for academics, then a potential student athlete may have to wonder if they will get the support they need off the field.
3. What is it that you look for in a player? What is the expectation or standard for your players both on and off the field? This is a great question, because this is where the coaches can get into the culture of the program and what is expected of their players. This is very important, because this sets the stage for time commitment, commitment to off-the-field work, community service, and social expectations. This is a question that can lead down many different paths. Pay attention to the tone of the coach’s voice and the excitement level they have when they talk about their program.
Coaches will always have specific questions they always love to ask potential student athletes. They usually have three to five they always ask, and it’s their way of determining if a recruit is a good fit for their institution and program.
Here are some answers you should always have queued up and ready to give to a coach:
1. Grades and Academic Standing – Coaches need to know where you stand academically to determine if you would get into their institution. Most of the time, they have already done their homework there, but coaches always want high-performing academic students, because it makes their lives easier. BE HONEST when answering this question. The truth will always come out.
2. What you’re looking for in a college experience – If you’re talking to a coach in a rural setting, but you want to go to school in a city environment, be upfront about that. Remember, not every college is right for everyone. Have an idea of what you’re looking for in a lacrosse program, and if you don’t know what you want to study, you can say that as well. Most coaches understand that at 16 or 17 years old, you may not know what you want to do for the next 30 to 40 years.
3. If you’re interested or not – If you’re not interested in that specific school, that’s okay. Be upfront about that. The worst thing you can do is drag something out for a long period of time and then have it end in a less-than-stellar fashion. Most coaches have heard no more than they have heard yes, and that’s fine. Still be upfront with them. It’s better for everyone in the long run.