College recruiters return to scouting


Julia Gibson, Reporter/Photographer

Covid-19 guidelines made it so sports continued throughout last year with precautionary measures that gave everyone the opportunity to play. In order for sports to continue, coaches and players adjusted to challenges that made the recruitment process different. 

“The recruiting process changes year in and out, especially during this pandemic. There have been longer dead periods where coaches could not contact or see potential recruits. There have been less coaches in our buildings, again, due to the pandemic but they still contact our coaches and recruits as needed. I have been contacted by numerous college coaches over the years and make sure that the communications are done within the guidelines of the NCAA,” athletic director George Stanley said.

The NCAA granted last year’s seniors an extra year to play in order to have an opportunity to be recruited, causing problems for younger players.

“Recruiting has been different because of Covid. New spots are usually available for members of class 2021-2022, now they aren’t because of the fifth year seniors. This affects the numbers and recruiting is all based on numbers,” head varsity football coach Will Patrick said. 

University and college coaches weren’t able to travel last year to watch athletes play; therefore, students felt they lacked potential scouting time. 

“Last year, not many coaches were allowed to get out to the different places and I feel like I didn’t get as much exposure as I should have,” senior Lucas Cash said.

Communication was based more online making it difficult for athletes attempting to contact administrators or coaches because there was no face-to-face process for college recruitment. 

“College recruitment was a lot more online than it was before, we had to talk to coaches over the phone and through emails. It is harder to communicate with coaches since you have to plan college visits and talk on the phone,” senior Ryan Toney said. 

Since the recruitment has been difficult, more virtual assessments have been made about the athletes through Zoom, over the phone, and email.

“It hit our class hard last year because sophomore summer is huge for coaches coming out to see you but because of covid they can only see you through a screen. That was really tough for a lot of kids in the Class of 2023 but this summer was more normal because coaches could come out and come to your practices,” junior Sylvie Jackson said.

For this school year, coaches are coming out and watching players practice and play in games. It gives players an opportunity to make up for what they missed out on last year.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Toney