Our son is getting a lot of D3 interest at the moment. It’s all happening pretty fast and we are not very informed about the process and are trying to educate ourselves.

I have so many questions but will start with one of the emails he received today, after a strong performance at a camp last week. From a top academic D3, saying the saw him play and are trying to narrow down recruiting class. They inviting him to their camp 

Other coaches have been more direct in saying they are very interested and want him, or are “actively recruiting” him now, but this one didn’t say that. Is it ok for my son to respond by clarifying their level of interest? In other words, did all kids at camp get this same email? In order to boost attendance?

We are not sure how to help him narrow the options and invitations for visits etc. All are out of state and far away for us. Many are great academic options. It’s exciting but also a little stressful.

Thank you 

Original Post

It does happen fast at this time of year.  Short answer:  yes, he should definitely ask the coach what their level of interest is.  Not to derail any other answers you might get, but you might find the following recent thread helpful:


Things to think about:

- are they all asking for academic info to do pre-reads?  Don't pay money to travel anywhere unless this has been done first.

- get your son to clarify what each coach is offering.  If these are very selective schools, does "they are very interested and want him" mean that they will give him a slot with admissions (i.e. almost guaranteed admission)?  put him on their high priority list, but with no guarantee?  are they telling him if he gets in he could play?  these all mean different things.

- is he interested in the school with the camp?  in the end he can only attend one school, if he has other options he is more interested in pursuing, then go with those first.

- definitely visit those he is most interested in, if you can manage it, that's the only way he will get a feel for the school and the baseball program.  There are a limited number of weekends before October, so he has to prioritize.



Ok will read that. Thank you.

Schools have been asking him to send his unofficial transcripts and test scores, some coaches asked him to text grades at the camp. Other schools texted him to follow up after meeting him, inviting him out for overnights.

One school he’s very interested in has told him they have a slot for him. If he locks it down this week, they said they’ll start pre-read process. Other schools have told him he’s in, no problem. The one school that emailed him, referenced above, is a very selective school and it seems like the kind of opportunity that he has to pursue, just for the academics. But I can’t tell from the email if they just want a camp customer. I will have him ask. They are not a school he had reached out to.

It’s hard to know what my son wants because he’s young and hasn’t been to most of these places. So he’s basing his interest off of conversations with coaches he liked and their sales pitches. He is researching schools now, trying to get his bearings. He also needs to think about playing time and development.. it’s a lot to sort through.

Thanks for info above—it’s very helpful.

Also, what happens in October? Do you mean before the ED window?

Sorry one more question! If he does decide to let the coach of the school he likes know that they’re his first choice, is he ethically obligated to stop visiting other schools? Or is it unwise to stop the recruiting process elsewhere, in case the favorite doesn’t pan out for whatever reason? How do you protect yourself while not offending coaches? 

Thank you so much.

Call the school, let them know that he has other offers he's seriously considering accepting and would like to know how interested they are. "Come up to a camp" can mean a lot of things ranging from we like you and want to get you on campus to offer, to we want another look for the rest of the staff to see, to we want your $250 so we can pay our volunteer assistants.

So if they say come to a camp let them know you can't make it. If they don't offer to have him come up and visit to see the school - they're not interested. When you have offers in the hand you don't need to be dishing out money for more camps, hotels, etc. I would say that unless you feel an offer is coming there is no need to really set foot on any of these campuses unless it is a huge upgrade academically. 

TS2020 posted:

Also, what happens in October? Do you mean before the ED window?

Sorry one more question! If he does decide to let the coach of the school he likes know that they’re his first choice, is he ethically obligated to stop visiting other schools? Or is it unwise to stop the recruiting process elsewhere, in case the favorite doesn’t pan out for whatever reason? How do you protect yourself while not offending coaches? 

Thank you so much.

In our experience, coaches wanted an answer by early October, so that they could make offers to other players, in time for ED applications.  They knew he was looking at several schools and could only apply ED at one.

This whole thing is a dance, the coaches know that.  For super-selective schools, where you likely really need a coach's pull to be admitted, you need to apply ED with support (slot, likely letter, be on the list, whatever they have at that school).  At such schools, "committing" means telling the coach that you will be applying ED with his support/slot, then you can't apply anywhere else.  Coach usually has a set number of players he can support, he should be clear about what kind of support you are getting - you want to be on that list.  When you commit to ED, he will likely tell other players that he can't support them (but might say he'd have them on the team if they get in on their own).

Don't know what "they have a slot for him - if he commits this week they'll start the pre-read" means.  Usually they'll have done a pre-read before offering a slot (depending on what is meant by "slot").  You know your son's GPA/SAT/ACT, see how they compare to the school's averages.  Get some clarity on that, and in the meantime, no, don't turn away anything until you have to.  If he has other options, he should tell the first coach that he is considering several options, and see what he says.

Also, visiting during the semester is really important, imo.  Everything is pretty abstract until you meet the coach and players, and see how they live.  

There were some other good recent threads about this:




Fully agree with everything AnotherParent said.  My 2017's experience with the HA schools was similar.  He was never offered a slot before the pre-read was done--that sounds a bit curious to me.  I might be worried this is a school overcommitting and trying to lure kids into ED with no worries about trimming the roster until after Fall practices Freshman year.

Have you evaluated the rosters and roster trends at these schools?  Be sure to do so.  Some D3s are known to expand rosters going into the Fall and then too many players means no opportunity.  D1s and D2s can get by with 35 player rosters--no reason D3s need 50 kids.  Many of these coaches have incentives to boost enrollment and inflating rosters is one way to do it.

As AP said, go visit the campus and observe the practice/scrimmages of the baseball team for any school he is seriously interested in.  We learned more on those visits than through any other means about how sincere the interest was.  One coach literally escorted him around campus, met with us for hours--sincere strong interest.  Another coach had an assistant and player handle the visit--never met the coach until the end--crossed that one off.  Watching the team practice gave my son a chance to evaluate roster competition, coaching methods, team interaction and so on. And I often visited the Finance office to talk about merit options, scholarships, timing, etc. 

The D3s have a tight window for Fall practice, so now is the time to be narrowing the schools and planning the visits.  Maybe that camp is also when school is in session and your son can observe campus atmosphere in addition to meeting the coaches and players. 

As to the final decision--you may feel some pressure but you and your son are in control of a huge decision--not the coach.  We were always up front that ED was never an option for us and that the best fit and finances would be the deciding factor (and that is not known until acceptance and merit money/aid is conveyed).  If your son is as good as he sounds getting strong interest now from multiple schools, he can be patient to make the right decision.

Good luck!

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