It is that time of year for lots and lots and lots of college showcase tournaments! And that means that there is lots of NCAA Division III college coaches out on the recruiting trails looking for players. Now we all know that this is the 21st century and everyone is trying to go paperless, but there are still a few things that are great to have paper copies for—namely team profiles for soccer tournaments.
You cannot replace a paper copy of a team profile for a coach to take notes on about players they are recruiting. Yes we know that more and more coaches have iPads or tablets and can use those, but nothing beats paper and ink—especially when it is raining!
The critical question is this—what is the important information to include in a team profile to make it attractive to college coaches?
First, since the D3 Recruiting Hub always tries to be educational, let’s clarify a few things. At most college showcases, college coaches will receive a player profile book from the tournament with team info on every player aged U15 and up. This includes their name, jersey number, email, phone number, graduation year, academic info (SATs, GPA), and position. The more info a player puts into the registration system, the more info that will be available. If a player does not provide this info, it does not get to the coaches. This can affect how much you get recruited. These books are sorted by age group and team.
Many teams also make up their own team profiles that they give out to college coaches at all events— tournaments, showcases, state cups, etc.— that have more detail than the generic player profile books. These are very handy to help promote your team and you can add on guest players as needed.
When creating team profiles, it is important to remember your audience. In addition to the info mentioned above (name, email, etc.), you should have graduation year, high school, position(s), and intended major if you know it. Indicate on the profile any players that are committed to colleges by their junior or senior year, so college coaches know that they are not looking to be recruited. Individual player pictures are good to include because that helps us recognize players on the field and, when we meet with them in person, we have a face to associate with a name. Of all this info, the two most prominent things should be jersey number and graduation year. Lastly, include your team colors, logo, manufacturer (adidas, Nike, etc.) —anything that will help college coaches pick out your team on the field right away.
Now how do you organize all this info? Some teams put this info on one sheet of paper while others go full color with one page per player highlighting each player’s accomplishments in their soccer careers (congratulations on winning the U9 Indoor State Cup, but do you think that is relevant to your college soccer career) and put this in a nice binder with a cover page, table of contents, and so forth. Being on the D3 level and recognizing that you are not going to get any financial reward for playing soccer, logically your team will not want to spend too much money trying to promote your players since there will be no return on investment.
Suggestion— a tri-fold, color brochure for your teams. First they are only one page, there is enough room for 22 players, they are easy to carry around in your back pocket/jacket pocket and not expensive to produce. On one panel list the team NUMERICALLY with the names, position(s) and graduation year— this is a quick reference that coaches can use to find players that interest them and quickly circle their names for follow up. The bulk of the brochure will have a color picture of each player with their name, jersey number, graduation year, high school, email address, phone number, and intended major. Other info you can include is GPA, SAT scores, home address and recent accomplishments. Lastly, make sure you have space for contact info for the coaches (phone number and email) as well as upcoming tournaments.
The bottom line is this— For your team profiles, keep them simple and include the necessary detail without it being overwhelming. You don’t have to spend a great deal of money on creating a team profile for your team. Sometimes less is more!
Any questions, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.