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I was hoping some people could give some advice on expectations and recruiting plan going forward.   People may recall that I have a smallish 2023 MIF, 5ft 9, 89 EV, 6.85 60, mid 80s throwing velo, 3.94 uwGPA at a top public HS.  No test scores yet but took PSAT10 cold and scored 1360; which converts to approx 30-31 ACT and 1400+ SAT.   His major will be computer sciences or computer engineering.  Likely will get a graduate degree.  So his focus is mostly academics.   He's thinking that a simple computer sciences degree opens up the number of schools he could play baseball and since he will be getting a masters, he may not have to go to a more tech oriented school for undergrad.   So I'm pretty sure D2/D3 is the best fit for him.  It's hard because he's very athletic (also probably recruitable in soccer).   I think if he was bigger he could easily be a D1 player.   

He's now had a couple inquiries from D1s to his travel coach; has big interest from a good D2 w official visit planned next month; and clear interest from D3s now.  (Side note, it was funny, he clearly did alright at Headfirst but he really didn't hear much as I expected right afterwards.  Maybe he was a bit early for D3 recruiting?)

He will be going to AZ Jr Fall classic and trying out for the academic game.  He's written coaches with his team schedule but it's hard to know exactly all the schools that will be there in advance (past years posted only).

1)  What happens at Fall Classic and afterwards?  Will coaches talk with him right there if interested?   Let's say he does well at academic game tryout and hopefully game!  Will schools reach out to him even if he hasn't expressed prior interest yet?  I've told him that if he doesn't get more D1 interest after this particular event, it should be very telling about where he fits.   Sound about right with COVID and the above description of skills?  Or if he wants, should he keep plugging away at some Ivy/Patriot league schools?

2)  Then what?  The showcases wind down and the quiet period starts.  He'll study for standardized tests and take them in winter.  He'll work out and shove calories in his face.  As test scores come in he updates profiles and sends them to all the schools he's interested in.   He writes schools with regular updates on his HS season in the spring.   He goes to Headfirst and Showball in rising senior summer.   Would you think the Stanford camp is also important for him?   It sounds like senior summer is where the D3 back and forth really starts.  Think recruiting would be typically aggressive for a kid like him?  Or is D3 recruiting always more laid back?   I take it he goes to some school specific camps in senior year fall 2022?  Gets offers and thinks whether he wants to Early Decision one particular school.   Then happy life.   Have I forgotten anything?

Sorry it is a long post but I appreciate the guidance.   

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A kid will blindly say he will go anywhere to play ball until he thinks it through. The parent has to have some feel on this issue to guide their kid. Do you feel your kid can handle being 2500-3000 miles from home? It means only getting home for holidays. I know kids who got homesick being 500 miles from home.

if distance isn’t an issue here’s where the search should start …

https://www.collegetransitions...or-computer-science/

Last edited by RJM

I'd follow your own advice in 1) where you mention Ivy/Patriot.  Start there and consider other D1 HAs such as William and Mary and others if your son scores accordingly on real SAT or ACT.  See where it takes you then consider D3 HAs with CS focus that RJM provided a link for.  You said he was academically focused, so why not start there.  BTW....UPenn has a great CS program. 

JMO

I agree with fenway (of course ).  Ivy/Patriot/other D1s start recruiting junior year, so contact D1 schools of interest before AZ, get a travel coach to contact them too, if possible.  If your travel coaches (assuming they understand recruiting) are hesitant to do that, that will tell you something.  If you get no interest from AZ, that will also tell you something.

D3s are probably not going to show much interest until summer before senior year, although if some are already interested, for sure keep in touch with them, just as you describe.  Most schools hold camps in the summer, too.  I don't know if you'll need Showball, Headfirst, AND Stanford in 17U summer.  That's a lot of money. One was enough for my son, plus a few school camps, and lots of travel tournaments.  How it goes depends on the kid, how he does at showcases, who is advocating for him, plus many other factors.

RJM is right, it depends on how far he's willing to go away to school, whether he is interested in some particular schools or just wants to see what's out there, etc.  There are regional showcases that are cheaper than Headfirst etc., if he wants to stay in one region (PTW, for example - I have no experience, but there was this 2020 thread:   https://community.hsbaseballwe...firsthand-experience)

Last edited by anotherparent

OK, I'll be that parent to state consider the costs in addition to the majors. That could be a huge factor in deciding. For us, after looking at the cost/benefit, the ivies dropped out of consideration as the kid will most likely pursue  post-grad work and resources should be directed there...sadly service academies was a no go for the kid (even with the enticement of us buying him a new  vehicle) due to the limited baseball in the summer...I will admit this irritated me as the kid knew about this through discussion with SA recruiter and talking to team mates who are committed to SA, but cold feet has it's own time table. He ended up a HA D3 in the northeast. The costs while not guaranteed will be less than Ivies but definitely more than the state schools. The wife and I accept and are prepared for the possibly the FA comes way short and we are to pay near full freight...well for the first year anyway.  The school met all the criteria for the kid: reasonable distance from home (close and far enough: for emergencies and to maintain independence), student body size, academic rigor and all the athletic facilities were on campus that did not require car travel so he can maximize his classes/study time. The coaches had a track record of advancing players to good summer league to further their baseball career and in position to win a conference and beyond which was also important for him.   

Last edited by 2022NYC

Just great advice, thank you.  I've been pretty sure he wants to go away for school and would do OK but I acknowledge that the reality of it just might be different.

I agree w you 2022NYC that we have to keep the ROI in mind.  I know we're in that full price camp for tuition at an Ivy or nescac and frankly the tuition seems ridiculous.  I keep thinking that the next notch down in D3 schools might have some merit/academic money if he does well in school.

I'll have travel coach outreach to the relevant D1 schools that I know will be at AZ Jr.   

I've learned so much here.  Thank you all.   

PS:  Paula, he did so well at that D2 camp he got noticed! 

I agree with “anotherparent” and most everything above.  Just went went through this with a 2022 who committed to HA D3. So, here is a dump of recent feedback.  

I think a 1360 PSAT baseline plus studying  plus superscoring will yield your son an outstanding result once all said and done.   We had a fair bit of Coach discussions along the way-  your son should be fine academically for pre-reads to most/all HA schools.  IMO, if you go D3, the key for HA D3 is ‘supported’ slots which I have seen discussed previously.

Our experience is the first tranche of HA D1 recruits (as rising juniors- I.e. now 2023s) are committed end of summer ball/early fall.  These generally are very ‘projectible’ players.  For D1’s, throughout the year, you can browse Perfect Game recruiting data posted by school for 2023 to keep up on where the schools are as far as #of commits.

For D3’s, in the HA circuit we engaged, it heated up with the start of club ball season (for us that was end of June). July 1 is often a date in regards to pre-reads.  We sent emails prior to club ball season and received some cordial responses with verbiage such as “look forward to seeing you play…” .   We didn’t attend any D3 camps prior.  Once they can come watch games, it got going.  For us, the keys were:

1) a club team that plays where the coaches go.  We found in our area that there are a couple of big draw, early season tourneys with loads of coaches.  Most schools wanted to see a kid play twice, but certainly once. So, I would keep this in mind given there are a lot of options for coaches to choose from.  Perhaps they can use their camp for this as well- I don’t know.

2) a trusted coach/insider recommendation.  Our club coach tee’s up his players with colleges (with schedules of when to see a player).  Through our recruiting meetings, quite a few coaches commented on the quality of our coaches’ club program and the reputation/trust of the coach.  The coach at the college we committed to said this specifically.  

Somewhere in mid July, it seems Ivy’s have zoned in on their players and starting to wrap up, HA D3’s are engaging their top choices and things really speed up.  

Also- here are  specific answers:

1)  What happens at Fall Classic and afterwards?  Will coaches talk with him right there if interested?  YES- while, I don’t know that event,  coaches reached out to us when interested without delay.  Let's say he does well at academic game tryout and hopefully game!  Will schools reach out to him even if he hasn't expressed prior interest yet?  YES - our school ‘found’ us. I've told him that if he doesn't get more D1 interest after this particular event, it should be very telling about where he fits. YES…but there are some coaches with erratic recruiting communications so not always.  Sound about right with COVID and the above description of skills?  Or if he wants, should he keep plugging away at some Ivy/Patriot league schools?

2)  Then what?  The showcases wind down and the quiet period starts.  He'll study for standardized tests and take them in winter.  YES- a controllable variable He'll work out and shove calories in his face.  As test scores come in he updates profiles and sends them to all the schools he's interested in.  He writes schools with regular updates on his HS season in the spring.   He goes to Headfirst and Showball in rising senior summer.  for us, our HF was a few weeks after we committed and by the time of HF, half our college class was committed so check timing.  Would you think the Stanford camp is also important for him?   It sounds like senior summer is where the D3 back and forth really starts.  Think recruiting would be typically aggressive for a kid like him?  Or is D3 recruiting always more laid back?  We found D3 recruiting pretty aggressive once into July.  I advise having your kid play in front of his top choices somehow by end of July. I take it he goes to some school specific camps in senior year fall 2022?  IMO, most of the supported slots are gone by then but with good academics may not be an issue for his admittance.   Gets offers and thinks whether he wants to Early Decision one particular school.  YES, supported slots want ED1 in our experience. Then happy life.   Have I forgotten anything? YES, enjoy your process regardless of outcome.

Last edited by BBSBfan

RE: Stanford/Showball/Headfirst choices: I'd think about going to two, but I think all three is overkill.  I know kids who ended up at NESCAC schools after going to only one of those showcases.  Save those $ for a couple of camp visits at schools that show serious interest and your son is REALLY interested in.

Timing: Covid has messed things up for D3 ED commitments to HA schools. Both my older boys ('17, '19) were able to attend camps at top choice schools in October, visit classes, etc and then make their decision.  My youngest ('22) has had no such luck. Some schools have wrapped things up by Labor Day while others are giving kids until Nov. 1 to commit. Very frustrating because it means having to make decisions without the advantage of visiting schools while students are there. This is critical I think because the school vibe is a major component of "fit."  Don't underestimate the importance of fit.  

Location: We're in the west. Older boys went to NESCAC and Centennial schools.  One kid loves his school, the other one tolerates his. The latter says the kids at his school are clueless about partying, act geeky, and make dumb decisions that he says he made when he was still in HS.  He's staying for a good reason, the academics, but I'm sad that he's not having more fun.

Good luck. You're asking great questions and getting great answers (not mine, but the other ones are awesome )

Last edited by smokeminside

Dadbelly2023- happy to do something else with all of the last months of efforts if it helps another.  Just want to highlight that we are East Coast so things such as playing in front of coaches may be different.

I also really appreciate smokeminside’s comments.  COVID clearly has changed timelines and not sure what next year will be.  As he highlighted for 2022 commits and same with our school…they are done (with fully supported slots).  Their remaining offers went out 2-3 weeks ago so having a good grip on 2023 timing will be important.  unfortunately, the HC’s we spoke to said they take it day by day with so much change so I suspect timeline questions not to be settled yet.

Location/fit was brought up a few times, like many, we minimized this aspect until the visits.   The ‘fit’ point above at some point is huge.  As a dad, I thought all the schools were beautiful, facilities decent, etc. When we got home, my son said he simply did not like one. I totally didn’t see that coming.  17-20 yr old men see it different than middle aged men…shocker.   To this, if you are fortunate to have some choices (again speaking to HA D3) and cycle remains fast, one of the best investments IMO if you can swing it (versus another showcase) is fly the first week that the colleges are open with students and see the schools.  That week gets you the campus ‘vibe’ with students back and with (likely) time for decisions. Plus, coaches are accessible as formal Fall practices (Atleast for ours) hadn’t started and coach is on campus to meet players, etc so had plenty of time for another talk.  Best of luck.

Last edited by BBSBfan

Dadbelly23,

A couple more thoughts to throw at you.....

Don't be too surprised if your son's travel or high school coach is not "up" on HA recruiting.   You are asking great questions that pertain specifically to "HA" recruiting.   I get the sense you understand this, and that is why you are looking for answers.   It never hurts to include the travel or high school coach with your strategy if they can help your son later on in the process.  In my experience, my son's travel coach was fantastic at opening D1 doors that got the ball rolling early in his junior year of high school, but he lacked experience with D1 HA of D3 HA schools.   We had to learn on our own, and adapt to their timeline and processes.

I agree with 2022NYC but only to a point.  If you can get an Ivy/Patriot or D1 HA like William & Mary interested then absolutely consider them until it gets to the serious interest phase where it requires the college to sharpen their financial pencil.   Allow them to sharpen their pencils.  Then you can make an informed decision...don't discount any school because what you think they might do.  The cache of getting a D1 HA offer from an Ivy/Patriot can help you tremendously with D3 HA recruiting if that is the direction you end up going.   Also, I've seen Ivys/Patriot schools do some incredible things with FA.   Allow them that opportunity if you get it.   Trust me on this one.

Recruited = skill + passion + exposure + persistence + luck.   Keep working on only those things that matter.

Good luck!

It's funny my first post has a AZ Fall Classic undertone as it was there last year that I was introduced to this website by a member. Been keenly following ever since. My son attended AZ Jr Fall Classic last year. No D1s due to covid but several D3s in attendance. A few followed up immediately after the tourney w my '22. Its a great event (even during covid). One of my '22s final choices he met at the event (Johns Hopkins). For very HAs like Hopkins, MIT and CalTech the SAT needs to be 1530+ for these schools. For example, the floor at Hopkins this year is 1510 (median 50% percentile) for a recruited slot consideration. HA D1 is a crap shoot IMO. My '22 was 8th ranked by position by CA PBR w 4.0/1550 SAT and had very little interest from Ivies but strong interest from Patriot and public HA D1 (he ended up committing to William & Mary this Summer). I would STRONGLY advise REALLY understanding the needs of each target school with respect to position. Just because PG commits shows 2 OFs committed does not mean they are not looking for a third or fourth for example. Or vice versa they may not need a HS SS for the class. As for the HA D3s they really heated up this Summer (end of summer prior to Senior yr) but pre-reads happened well ahead of the Summer. All the HA D3 coaches were fantastic, honest, and frankly seemed more focused and prepared than many of the D1 schools. I share this so folks don't assume there is any drop off w the D3 group at any level of the process. The last point I'll make is that the only thing that you can count on in the process is change. Recruiting will heat up and cool down with some schools, some schools you have never spoken to will call, and even when your son commits its not over until signing day and even beyond. We lived this roller coaster even ex-post commitment when the head coach at W&M recently left to take another job. Thankfully the asst coach has been promoted and the admin has been great but the situation could have been really challenging. For example, the head coach at another of my son's final choices, U Chicago, left a few weeks ago as well and has put a teammate in a really tough spot given how they do their process/admissions. And I cant tell how many of my '22s friends have decommitted and "re-opened" their recruiting process over the past 2-3 months. All excellent players, Area Code participants in most cases, and are having a tough time. I am hopeful your '23 will see greener pastures in the process. I have a '24 too so I have to stay optimistic! Good luck, I'll be rooting for you.

So here's what you and your son need to talk about. Does he want to go to a school with _______ programs and play baseball or does he want to go to specific schools and try to play baseball there as well. There's a difference.

D2s and D3s aren't stupid. They know your kid wants to play D1, which is why their recruiting timeline is later than the timeline of a D1. That being said, if your son does not have any interest from D1s at the end of June next summer, it isn't going to happen. And I mean serious interest where they're asking for grades and having you fill out FA calcs. After that focus on D2s and D3s.

There are D2s and D3s that try to poach potential D1 guys early. If it's a good fit and it works financially go for it, but don't just jump on offers because it's the only offer. I would suggest doing that 10 months from now, but not this second. So feel it out. The reason I mention talking with your son is because D3s, when they aren't trying to poach the fringe D1 guys, typically recruit from end of July to October of senior year. So unless there are specific D3s in mind that he'd be targeting specifically for their academic programs, don't worry about the D3s showing high interest. Of course they are.

As far as his options. Patriots and Ivys will recruit into August of next summer. They also have no money to give, or in the case of the Patriot League virtually no money. As far as D2s I know of maybe four or five that would be considered high academic. That means two things. It means that it may not be what your son is looking for OR it may mean that your son can get a ton of academic money. And then when it comes to D3s I wouldn't even focus on the baseball. I would let academics and financing college drive my decision making and if he's in between a few I would let the baseball determine where I ended up, but that's just me. I would never walk into an expensive mediocre school just to be able to play baseball for a few more years

@PABaseball posted:


… then when it comes to D3s I wouldn't even focus on the baseball. I would let academics and financing college drive my decision making and if he's in between a few I would let the baseball determine where I ended up, but that's just me. I would never walk into an expensive mediocre school just to be able to play baseball for a few more years

I think, In general that is very sound advice. I would say though that it is important to also heavily factor in the Baseball experience at potential D3 schools. The workload is a grind: long practices and mandatory lifting, plus of course the classroom work and studying.

There are D3 schools that almost never have underclassmen see the field, and some D3 schools that routinely redshirt underclassmen. There are D3 schools that have 50-60 players on their roster.  Last I checked only 9 play at a time.  It’s fairly routine to have only 10 or 11 position players get significant playing time in a given season, unless there are big injuries.   It’s important to understand the NCAA rules when it comes to redshirting specifically at D3’s:  Players cannot practice with the team if they are redshirted once games begin. Athletically, yes, you get five years to play four.  You are also are paying for five years of College to get a four year degree if you are redshirted at a D3.  

It’s important to know what you were getting into. If a D3 school shows serious interest, do the research. Look at previous season stats, see how many underclassmen got significant at bats or innings pitched in the last three or four years. Look at the roster. Is it loaded with JUCO transfers? How long has the coach been there?

College baseball can be a fantastic experience, but it is also really hard work. Try to be realistic about your chances of actually seeing the field, don’t think you’ll be the exception that proves the rule. To put in all the work in the fall,Then not be able to practice with the team in the spring (if you are redshirted) and/or to put in all the practice time in both the fall and spring and essentially just be a bullpen catcher for 2 to 3 years can be really tough. But a lot of players do that And still have a great experience.

…again do your very best to find out what are you are getting into, because D3 schools really vary as to how they go about doing things. All that to say, yes, I agree with the above statement. Put the academics first, as well as the financing and the culture at the school in general. If you are going to put in all that work, come away with a great degree and a great educational experience. However, if everything else is generally equal when it comes to the academics, really spend a lot of time factoring in the different Baseball experiences at different schools.

Last edited by 3and2Fastball

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