D3 HA timing

Could those of you who have been through the process give me a sense of when your sons started getting serious interest from HA D3 schools?  And when did coaches actually ask to get an admissions pre-read / offer a spot on the team?  (I'm talking about schools like, e.g., NESCAC, Centennial Conference, UAA...)

My son is a 2020.  He has talked with some HA D3 coaches at showcases, traded emails with some.  Based on what I have read, I take it these schools don't begin recruiting seriously until summer before a player's senior year (summer 2019 for my son).  Did your sons have much contact with D3s during their junior year HS season?  I ask because to this point, the emails replying to my son tend to just say some version of "thanks for writing, good luck this season."  I assume any contact is a reasonably good sign, but is there some point when he should expect messages to get a little more substantial if coaches are interested?  And what did "more interest" look like for your kids from these kinds of schools?  Academically and baseball-wise I feel confident Chico Jr. is fishing in the right proverbial pond at these schools, but I wish I could get a better sense of which coaches might be interested enough to make it worthwhile to buy a plane ticket so Jr can go visit campus.

Original Post

IMO, if he is fishing in the right pond, nothing is going to happen until the summer, and then it will happen really, really fast. Now is the time to work on grades, SAT/ACT prep and have a great Jr. season and make sure he's signed up for the right summer events.

Edit to say: if it is the right pond, and you have the  money and your son has the availability, there's no reason _not_ to get on a plane and visit the campuses he would most like to see.  It's really hard to get a feel for what life on a LAC campus is like in the middle of summer.

JCG posted:

IMO, if he is fishing in the right pond, nothing is going to happen until the summer, and then it will happen really, really fast. Now is the time to work on grades, SAT/ACT prep and have a great Jr. season and make sure he's signed up for the right summer events.

Maybe I should clarify: by fishing in the right pond, I don’t mean I take for granted that he’ll land at one of these schools. But he has good enough baseball skills to be in the mix.  And his grades and test scores are in the right ranges (as are those of a whole lot of kids who aren’t accepted at these schools—I don’t take that for granted either). 

I understood that. Even if you're over-or-under estimating his skills by a bit, the process is going to be the same, and it's going to get going this summer. For some kids, it will be resolved during the summer, while for others, it may be closer to the  ED application deadlines.  

As for the academics, since you're paying attention  to the ranges then you probably have a clear idea of how it's going to go when coaches at these schools ask for a pre-read from admissions. Sounds like those should go pretty well for your son.

 

This is for NESCAC schools:

Besides the emails and showcase contact you mentioned first meaningful contact started in July/August before senior year.  Serious interest in August.  Visits and overnight visits September & October.  Pre-reads were requested at the visits.  Offered in October.  Committed end of October.  Told to apply early admission.

If the schools are local to you, there's nothing wrong with letting them know about your son before the Junior baseball season starts, assuming your son is on Varsity. We have numerous coaches and RC's come by to catch a few games. In general, though, the research and scouting is done during the summer just before senior year, with the whole commitment kerfuffle happening before the ED date. 

  There is definitely some recruiting being done after that. There's always some schools who were left at the altar during ED.

Pretty much echo the above, re: timeline.  It's all about the summer. Where it gets tricky is that the # of slots available at each school is NOT the same.  Some schools seem to have only 2-3 slots.  They might say they like your skills but then they follow up with this quote: "It's ultimately up to admissions." They are being clear and honest and you need to listen to every word carefully.  "We love you, apply EA, but it's ultimately up to admissions" is not the same as "We love you, apply ED, and we will support you with admissions."  That may seem painfully obvious but when you're in the midst of a great campus visit at a school that is the gastronomical equivalent of a Three Star Michelin restaurant, it's pretty easy to just hear the "We love you..."  You ignore the rest of the sentence at your peril, even if your kid is in the 25-75% range of scores and GPAs of admitted students.  At some places you HAVE to have coach's help.

Going back to the timeline for my two kids: one was offered in the coach's office in July after  two showcases and a pre-read.  Offer stood, amazingly, until son completed other campus visits in October at schools where he had also been offered (all offers in summer, and no offers under a deadline). 

Second son was offered at several places in the summer and fall, either at showcases or campus visits, turned them all down after he heard the EA spiel but only listened to 'we love you" part.  Has now been deferred at his two top choices but recently was offered admission without the coach's help at a NESCAC school and is awaiting other admission decisions. Very relieved and grateful that he has a place to play if he wants it. Not a path I'd recommend.

 

Since it has not been mentioned thus far in this thread, attending a Headfirst showcase after junior year is a must for a kid with baseball skills and the academic credentials with a good chance to get in to a high academic school.  Since it sounds like you and your son are aiming for eastern schools, so attending one of the sessions in August in the NYC area probably makes the most sense.

My 2017 C/RHP attend the June HF session in Sacramento the Summer leading up to his senior year.  Up to that point, he really had not received any interest from HAs.  That showcase will present a kids test scores and GPA on the roster for the coaches in attendance.  After that session, the flood gates opened up and from July through November, it was a constant flow of e-mails, campus and camp invites, and discussions of admissions chances.  Mostly D3 schools like you mentioned (but many in SoCal where we are) but some outreach from the Ivy coaches at HF. 

If you are not familiar with HF, there are lots of threads on this forum about it.  It is costly, but from our experience, it was the best bang for a buck where you can meet and actually talk to the greatest number of coaches from HA schools.  If you do that in the Summer, then you can gauge true interest by the end of the Summer and then plan your select Fall visits around application time.  And as others noted here, you will know who is truly interested based on how persistent the coach is in getting your son out for a visit during school.  I cannot over emphasize how important it is to take that visit during school time, watch the team in a Fall practice or inter-squad game and even spend a night on campus if offered.  My son greatly benefitted from those visits--not only seeing his potential competition on the team but in seeing what life on the campus would be like.

Finally, if your son is uncommitted at the time, consider the Arizona Senior Fall Classic (Oct of Senior year) Academic Game in your plans.  It is very competitive to secure a spot in the All Academic Game, but there were over 100 coaches at that event (not as personal as HF) and my son had 10-12 follow-ups in the few days after the event.  He ultimately landed at a HA D2 as a result of his performance in that game. 

Good luck on the journey and enjoy the process!

 

 

Serious interest started in mid July with two NESCAC and one Centennial HA D3.  Son wasn't getting a great feel with a few Ivy's he'd been talking with, so he upticked his conversation with these three HA D3's, which were his top 3 backups. Son mentioned he'd like to visit their schools following the July Showball Showcase.  These D3's had seen him play at least 3 times that summer. 

And when did coaches actually ask to get an admissions pre-read / offer a spot on the team?  Coaches got admission pre-reads mid July prior to ShowBall Showcase.  After ShowBall son felt Ivy's were gone. He visited these HA D3's in August to figure out which campus and setting he preferred.  Son didn't BS the Coaches, after the visits and lengthy conversations the school and HC he thought was his number 1 he stated that to the HC clearly.  That HC said son was his number 1 recruit and offered support through admissions based on applying ED1. Deal closed.  HC was very clear it's support not a guarantee, however he stated because son was his first choice and his scores were within the 50% of accepted students he didn't expect any issues at all.  Son never doubted his choice of school or his ability to get accepted.

Son has never looked back.  Loves his school, loves his coach, works his butt off, had a strong semester academically, started the first game last week, now hoping his bat kicks in.....  I'm looking forward to seeing his three game series this weekend!

EDIT:  IMO emailing a few choice HA D3's in May of Junior yr is perfect.  These HC's are just ending their season, developing a player watch list for June Showcases.  Get seen in June, again in July, now the coaches will have seen you play a few times, then hopefully conversation gets active in August, visit in Sept, and hopefully get offer.  IF conversations with HA D3's don't get active in August, I'd plan on going to the AZ Fall Senior Showcase.  

As Smoke said: listen to what the Coaches are saying, when in doubt ask to clarify.  Can be really frustrating interpreting what HC is saying to son and what son is relaying to you.

 

Gov posted:

Serious interest started in mid July with two NESCAC and one Centennial HA D3.  Son wasn't getting a great feel with a few Ivy's he'd been talking with, so he upticked his conversation with these three HA D3's, which were his top 3 backups. Son mentioned he'd like to visit their schools following the July Showball Showcase.  These D3's had seen him play at least 3 times that summer.

 

Just curious... how/where did your son get in front of 3 NESCAC coaches on 3 occasions in one summer?

All the advice here is much appreciated--thanks.

Jr is going the Showball in Boston in mid-July, and went to HF last year.  I have the same question MidAtlanticDad asked:  How did you get in front of HA D3 coaches earlier in the summer?  I live in NC.  Almost all the schools my son is interested in are in the northeast.  Other than the WWBA, he won't play tournaments this spring or summer in places coaches from outside the southeast are likely to be.  Son has sent video and info to coaches via email, and that has prompted some interest, but I assume they will need to actually get eyes on him.  It sounds like July is not too late, but does anyone have suggestions for ways to get seen earlier?

As it happens, I just got an email invite for son to the PG National Academic Showcase in Alabama in mid-June.  No disrespect to PG intended, but my sense is that their events are more about getting verified numbers and evaluations online than about actually getting seen by coaches in person--son already has some PG data online from previous tournaments.  (He's a pitcher, which helps re: measurables.)  Anyone have any experience with the PG academic events?  That would be a(nother) fairly large check to write, but I could do it if it's likely to be helpful.

MidAtlanticDad posted:
Gov posted:

Serious interest started in mid July with two NESCAC and one Centennial HA D3.  Son wasn't getting a great feel with a few Ivy's he'd been talking with, so he upticked his conversation with these three HA D3's, which were his top 3 backups. Son mentioned he'd like to visit their schools following the July Showball Showcase.  These D3's had seen him play at least 3 times that summer.

 

Just curious... how/where did your son get in front of 3 NESCAC coaches on 3 occasions in one summer?

MidAtl, Great question especially given we live in the Midwest! 

  1. Son played in the Chicagoland Classic Showcase in the beginning of June.  The event is for the top 2-3 players of each Chicagoland's HS Varsity teams.  Then they have an HA day with other schools attending (Vandy, ND, NW, Service Academy's, few NESCAC's, few Centennials, Wash U, UofC)
  2. He then played in the PG WWBA in early July where 7/8 Ivy's, 2 NESCACs (AC's), JH (AC) were attending.
  3. Then he played in the ShowBall Showcase mid July(?), and followed up w ShowBall HC event late July.

So, in 60 days he actually was seen 4 times in a mix of competition.  I can be more specific with which coaches if you want to PM me.

Chico Escuela posted:

All the advice here is much appreciated--thanks.

Jr is going the Showball in Boston in mid-July, and went to HF last year.  I have the same question MidAtlanticDad asked:  How did you get in front of HA D3 coaches earlier in the summer?  I live in NC.  Almost all the schools my son is interested in are in the northeast.  Other than the WWBA, he won't play tournaments this spring or summer in places coaches from outside the southeast are likely to be.  Son has sent video and info to coaches via email, and that has prompted some interest, but I assume they will need to actually get eyes on him.  It sounds like July is not too late, but does anyone have suggestions for ways to get seen earlier?

Go to Showball or HF in June, then follow up with July Showball or HF events.  I think it's critical even if focused on HA D3's to get seen and get to know the Coaches.  Last chance to spend small dollars investing in kid, before you pay the big ticket the following year   If a kid knows he's D3 destined go to where those Coaches will be.  

Chico Escuela posted:

As it happens, I just got an email invite for son to the PG National Academic Showcase in Alabama in mid-June.  No disrespect to PG intended, but my sense is that their events are more about getting verified numbers and evaluations online than about actually getting seen by coaches in person--son already has some PG data online from previous tournaments.  (He's a pitcher, which helps re: measurables.)  Anyone have any experience with the PG academic events?  That would be a(nother) fairly large check to write, but I could do it if it's likely to be helpful.

Unlikely a HA D3 will be at that event.  Go to June and July Showball and HF events!

Gov posted:

MidAtl, Great question especially given we live in the Midwest! 

  1. Son played in the Chicagoland Classic Showcase in the beginning of June.  The event has an HA showcase day drawing top academics all over the country (Vandy, ND, NW, Service Academy's, few NESCAC's, few Centennials).  The evens is for the top 2-3 players of each Chicagoland's HS Varsity teams.  Then they have an HA day with other schools attending (Vandy, ND, NW, Service Academy's, few NESCAC's, few Centennials, Wash U, UofC)
  2. He then played in the PG WWBA in early July where 7/8 Ivy's, 2 NESCACs (AC's), JH (AC) were attending.
  3. Then he played in the ShowBall Showcase mid July(?), and followed up w ShowBall HC event late July.

So, in 60 days he actually was seen 4 times in a mix of competition.  I can be more specific with which coaches if you want to PM me.

Well done!

1st&3rd posted:

This is for NESCAC schools:

Besides the emails and showcase contact you mentioned first meaningful contact started in July/August before senior year.  Serious interest in August.  Visits and overnight visits September & October.  Pre-reads were requested at the visits.  Offered in October.  Committed end of October.  Told to apply early admission.

Exact same time frame & Activities. Centennial League

Our experience, and we really didn't know what the heck we were doing. Son went to SB camp after sophomore year.  Got some interest and then was ghosted or wasn't interested in school for academic reasons.  Son started really targeting one HA school, ie had filled out recruiting questionnaire and had been in email contact with HC.  This coach was not at SB.  Emails consisted of my son saying "here are my stats, here are my grades, here's where I will be playing this summer" and coach responding "Thanks, keep studying hard."

Late summer before senior year, son attended HA camp at school he had been targeting for the first time.  Can't really tell you why he didn't go before other than we were pretty clueless.  Son says he showed well.  Son sent a follow up thank you type email.  Coach then reached out via email for latest scores/transcript.  Several weeks later got an email invite for a ON.  Son went on ON in Oct, fell even more in love with the school and loved the experience with the players.  Not sure son even said more than a handful of words to the coaches.

Then coach sent an email that said they'd like to see son apply ED, but all admissions was solely up to Admissions Committee.  It was short and cryptic.  Much discussion over whether or not to do so as ED was a financial commitment by us and we still had no idea how interested coach really was in our son.  In the end we allowed son to apply ED due to the "fitness" of the academics, ie it was his dream school irregardless of baseball.  After application is in, son gets a LL.  Cryptic brief emails between coach and son continue.    

Son got in ED, and almost immediately got an email from Coach congratulating him.  Conversations have now gone to text and are just as brief and cryptic......which I guess explains email style.lol

Kind of a weird journey for sure, but that was our experience.

Chico,

To Smoke's point...possibly every HA recruiting experience is unique.  I'll give you another possible angle.  My son was offered (early Spring junior year) by some D1 mid-majors (both very good schools including a public Ivy ) but neither offered an engineering major.  We had been in touch with some Ivys that were showing serious interest in the early summer.   At about the same time, a handful of D3 HA schools were reaching out to him in the early summer.   Keep in mind it was extremely difficult for us to find a suitable situation that includes a quality engineering school and quality baseball program.   At this point my son doesn't care whether it is D1, D3 or D17 baseball, he just wants the best engineering school he can find, and play baseball.   My point in this is sometimes you have to create a market or name for yourself elsewhere to get what/where you want to go.   It was very clear to us that the Ivy coaches were talking to the NESCAC coaches, and this led to his serious recruitment by some D3 HAs.   His ultimate decision came down to the engineering school not the NCAA level.  If things had not worked out at his first choice his second choice was a NESCAC and third choice was Ivy.  

Just our experience in this crazy process.   Good luck!

Thanks (again) to all--this has been helpful.

Did any of you find the PG Academic showcase helpful?  We are in NC and most schools my son is interested in is are in the northeast or mid-Atlantic.  His summer team will play in the WWBA in July and he is signed up for Showball academic in mid-July, but otherwise he's not likely to be seen by any schools outside the southeast.  The PG Academic in in mid-June this year in Alabama.  Did any of your sons attend that?  Were HA coaches actually there or were data from the event useful?  (Son already has a PG profile that shows him well, but those numbers are from 2018.)  Coaches from some schools have texted / emailed just to say "keep me posted" and son has sent his spring and summer schedule to ~25 schools.  So they know where to find him, but they aren't typically in our neck of the woods.

Any other recommendations for showcases (other than Headfirst and Showball) that get a lot of HA schools--especially ones that are fairly early in the summer? 

Chico - go to HF in June also... then your son will have a blend of HA who will have seen him.  The feedback we got was not many HA D3’s go to PG Academic because the academics of players are not as strong as HF or Showball.  And PG doesn’t list the schools attending.  I know Harvard’s Decker has attended, eventually recruiting a members son.

JHopkins, Midd, GTown, Ivy AC’s go to PG WWBA.... were there the previous year.

Ask the schools where their coaches will be this summer?

If you can spare the expense (and if there is still availability), the Stanford camp is exceptional. I have attached a list of schools that are attending/coaching. It's $1,100 but an awesome experience and my son made a lot of contact with coaches during that camp: http://www.stanfordbaseballcam...HS_Aged_Players_.htm

We also found that HeadFirst provided the most focused time to communicate directly with coaches so I recommend that camp as well. Good luck!

 

 

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