I’ve been contacted by several families regarding email blasts from colleges after attending our fall tournaments.
As a parent you have probably decided or are trying to figure out if this is spam or a legitimate opportunity. There is a lot of combining factors that influence the interest behind you receiving these emails. I’m writing this email to explain all of this in support of your family making the best decision.
Why are we receiving these emails?
1. College Camps Are a Fundraiser- Most college baseball programs have several unpaid assistant coaches. These coaches are able to make a living by running baseball camps through the university. With that established these camps are, in fact, a fundraiser for the baseball program.
2. NCAA Regulations (Teams Carry Less Players/Less Practice Time)-Despite camps being a fundraiser for the university they’re a key way for coaches to see prospects before making scholarship decisions. When I was a college athlete a school could bring in a hundred players and narrow those numbers down to 25 players. We were also able to play 50 games in a fall season. These two factors combined made it less risky for college coaches to bring in a player. Today, college baseball programs can only bring in 40 players total (including players that get cut and red shirt players), and their team practice time is very limited. These factors make it increasingly important for schools to see a prospect at their camp, on the same playing field, up against other prospects. A commitment to these camps also shows schools that you have a legitimate interest in their program, which goes a lot further than people realize in getting a player on a schools radar.
3. Quality of Tournament- The Fall Classic events invite the top 50 baseball clubs on the west coast. Colleges have a high interest in attending these events because they offer a playing field with top talent (one-stop-shopping). By sending out an email blast to all the participants in this event they are reaching a pool of top talent, which will offer them a high-quality prospect camp for their program.
All of our players are at or past the point where they need to be narrowing down the type of schools that they would like to attend. In receiving these emails it would be helpful in your decision process to analyze whether or not the schools that are emailing you are the schools that your player could see themselves going to. If so, I would recommend attending their camp. I cannot promise that I will offer the potential of recruitment but it will at least allow your player to see where they stand against the other players they are bringing in for this camp, which is really valuable information for developing player. Ultimately, as Alaskan families, our biggest challenge is exposure. In living in Alaska, gaining exposure we can become a very expensive process. College camps are one opportunity amongst many. If college baseball is the route that your player wants to go, it will be important for your family to sit down and develop a strategy on where to position your player to be seen by the people that need to make decisions on him.
I hope this information is helpful in making a decision regarding college camps. Feel free to contact me if you have any additional questions.