Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Being Different in an Ocean of Great Players
by Avi Stopper, November 27th, 2008 10AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  youth boys

MOST COMMENTED

By Avi Stopper

Every young player knows the feeling. You're playing in a big game and there are college coaches on the sidelines. Every time you do something good, they seem to be looking the other way. Every time you mess up, they're looking right at you.

The question is, how do you get them to pay attention to you long enough to really see what you're capable of? The answer is that you have to be different; you have to do something to stand out from the mass of other players around you.

Don't take this the wrong way. The point isn't that you have to do something miraculous while coaches are watching you. You don't have to have a three bicycle-kick hat trick. Instead, you should focus on "playing your game," doing things the way you normally do them. The time to be different is when you're corresponding with coaches.

Think about it, college coaches are constantly being inundated with emails from prospects. There are only so many emails that they can read that say, "Dear Coach, I really want to play for your team. Really, really, really badly. Sincerely, Mercutio." Yawwwwn. The key is to do and say things that are different. Be honest, but avoid the obvious lines that everyone else is using.

An example might be to say in an email that "My family just got back from Yellowstone National Park. Old Faithful is the best! And I just created a 'Save the Yellowstone Wolves' group on Facebook." Granted, it's a goofy example, but it's something different, something that college coaches haven't read 239 times already today. You might also do something really out of the ordinary, like create a collage of pictures of yourself and the college team and quotes from your friends and coaches saying why you'd be a good fit.

Brainstorming stuff like this is fun. Sit down with a piece of paper and just start writing the goofiest ideas that come to mind. Don't do them all, but do some. Why is this so important? Because college coaches will remember you when they are at your next game. They'll remember the funny card you sent them or the camel-riding picture from when your class went to the zoo. And they'll be more inclined to keep watching you to see what you're really capable of doing as a player.

(Avi Stopper is the founder of CaptainU.com , a software company that walks high school players step-by-step through the college recruiting process.)

 

 

 



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Youth Soccer Insider
The most important coaching tool ever...     
I've said various things to the opposing coach during the postgame handshake:
How I Became a Referee -- and Why I'm Glad I did    
When I was 15 years old, one of my soccer coaches, Gordon Barr (son of U.S. ...
Mario Goetze: From 'rascal' to World Cup hero     
The latest edition of our "When They Were Children" series provides a glimpse into the youth ...
Tim Howard's advice for keepers, parents and coaches    
In light of Tim Howard's extraordinary performance at the 2014 World Cup, where he set a ...
Robben and Van Persie: When They Were Children     
Here are some glimpses into the childhoods of Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie, who each ...
Love in the Time of Futbol     
I am ready. Every four years when the World Cup comes around my every day world ...
Understanding teen 'weirdness'    
Any coach who works with teenage athletes knows they will have to deal with a lot ...
Sleep well, play well (The teenager's challenge)     
I'm sure anyone who's raised an adolescent or teenager can attest to the idea that teenagers ...
Elite? Premier? Not when the punts are flying    
The setting is a "showcase" tournament featuring some of the top youth clubs in Region 1. ...
Brazil-bound U.S. players share early World Cup memories    
While they were preparing for this summer's World Cup we asked the USA's Brazil-bound players to ...
>> Youth Soccer Insider Archives