Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 23

Thread: College camps...at what age?

  1. #1
    I can talk softball all day Top_Notch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    262
    Thanks
    29
    Thanked 205 Times in 93 Posts

    Default College camps...at what age?

    In light of the recent recruiting rules, I ask at what age should a potential student athlete attend the college camp of their (potential) choice? For the record this is a Division 1 Big 10 school. I'm told that if DD is interested in playing for a specific college that she should attend their camps. The school is 3 hrs away.

    For background, DD is a first year 14U (13 years old) and plays for a College Exposure 'A' level team, and has been playing A ball for numerous years. Her Org has a reputation for getting girls recruited. Her team will be in showcases this year. DD is a pitcher, currently the team #1 and was the #1 last year. She has decent defense, below average overhand arm speed, but accurate, above average pitching speed with good movement, and an average bat. Wife says to wait to attend next year while DD works to improve her game. She states there is no reason to get on the college's 'radar' as a average player, but better to get on the radar as a 'good' player next year. My take is to show interest early and let the college get acquainted with her and her abilities while she grows (she is very tall but thin) and improves.

    DD has attended some camps already, albeit closer to home including a D1 school camp. So DD is familiar with the process, but it never hurts to get more reps IMO


    Any advice? Do we go now or do we wait until next year?


  2. #2
    I can talk softball all day Anthony Vertuccio's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Sayville
    Posts
    282
    Thanks
    100
    Thanked 157 Times in 58 Posts

    Default

    Send her to camps that are instructional where college coaches teach.
    Coach Tucci St Josephs College (Brooklyn) Assistant Head Coach and LI Surge 16U HC

  3. #3
    JAD
    JAD is offline
    I eat, sleep and breathe softball JAD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    8,235
    Thanks
    4,821
    Thanked 7,174 Times in 3,177 Posts

    Default

    I think 14 is a good time to start attending camps.
    "I do not fear the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times" ~Bruce Lee

  4. #4
    I can talk softball all day vicimus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Posts
    130
    Thanks
    129
    Thanked 57 Times in 22 Posts

    Default

    DD is 14 but a HS sophomore. She attended 3 college camps this year (1 as a freshman), and we've found a huge difference between not only the type of clinic/camp but also when they are offered in the NCAA recruiting calendars (Recruiting Calendars | NCAA.org - The Official Site of the NCAA).

    She attended a one day clinic/camp in January at the #1 D1 school (in state Big 10) on her list, which AFAIC was a pure *money grab* and not recruiting-related. IMHO, earmarks of a money-grab clinic/camp are the following:
    - not during NCAA evaluation period
    - it's called a *clinic* vs *camp*
    - same clinic is offered several weeks in a season
    - name does not include the words *recruiting* or *prospects*
    - 100+ girls attending
    - bunch of skill stations with 10+ girls each rotating through like an assembly line.

    However, in August DD received an invitation to another D1 school (A10 out of state but only 2 hours away though) that wasn't really on her list, but after further review meets all of her primary criteria (D1, #1 major is her major, far enough from parents but not too far, etc.). The camp was actually held Labor Day weekend (Friday-Sunday) which included the NCAA Sep 1 opening of evaluation season. It was a grueling (some girls didn't come back after day 1 due to the heat) 3 day camp that included skills evaluation and ended with several scrimmages. Apparently, DD stood out among the 15 pitchers (top 2 or 3) and hitters. Apparently, they only send 50 invitations per year and only to girls they've seen at least twice at different showcases. Apparently, they saw DD at one of the showcases where she hit a HR over the fence and pitched a win against a 16U team and lost 1-0 on bracket day to another 16U team due to a passed ball. :-(

    The next weekend DD went to another D1 (Patriot League out of state but only 2.5 hours away) camp where she also stood out among 6 pitchers (pitched 4 inning shutout w/ 8 Ks, 0 BBs, 2 singles) and had the best hit (triple to the fence in CF) among all the scrimmage games.

    Even though DD is a sophomore, she sent a follow up email to both of the last 2 school coaches above thanking them for the opportunity and included her 1 page player profile summary and her fall ball tournament schedule hoping that she would see them again. I also had DD TB HC and private pitching coach follow up with both school coaches via phone calls to play the *is-DD-on-your-radar-without-talking-specifics* game. ;-)

    So, 13 is not too early. My recommendation is to attend as many non-money-grab camps as possible and have your TB HC follow up to play the *are-you-interested* game.

    Quote Originally Posted by Top_Notch View Post
    In light of the recent recruiting rules, I ask at what age should a potential student athlete attend the college camp of their (potential) choice? For the record this is a Division 1 Big 10 school. I'm told that if DD is interested in playing for a specific college that she should attend their camps. The school is 3 hrs away.

    For background, DD is a first year 14U (13 years old) and plays for a College Exposure 'A' level team, and has been playing A ball for numerous years. Her Org has a reputation for getting girls recruited. Her team will be in showcases this year. DD is a pitcher, currently the team #1 and was the #1 last year. She has decent defense, below average overhand arm speed, but accurate, above average pitching speed with good movement, and an average bat. Wife says to wait to attend next year while DD works to improve her game. She states there is no reason to get on the college's 'radar' as a average player, but better to get on the radar as a 'good' player next year. My take is to show interest early and let the college get acquainted with her and her abilities while she grows (she is very tall but thin) and improves.

    DD has attended some camps already, albeit closer to home including a D1 school camp. So DD is familiar with the process, but it never hurts to get more reps IMO


    Any advice? Do we go now or do we wait until next year?

  5. #5
    Certified softball maniac marriard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    2,937
    Thanks
    1,248
    Thanked 3,090 Times in 1,323 Posts

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Top_Notch View Post
    a D1 school camp. So DD is familiar with the process, but it never hurts to get more reps IMO

    Any advice? Do we go now or do we wait until next year?
    Go... good to see the competition early and see what the coaches tend to migrate to. Also good to be able to shake coaches hand and CLEARLY state that this is a school she is interested in. Also it is a chance to do an admissions tour, tour the campus, and check out the school to see if it really is someplace she can see herself for four years.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    "60 feet, turn left"

  6. The Following User Says Thank You to marriard For This Useful Post:

    MNDad (09-27-2018)

  7. #6
    Softball Junkie Orange Socks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    855
    Thanks
    42
    Thanked 622 Times in 351 Posts

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by vicimus View Post
    IMHO, earmarks of a money-grab clinic/camp are the following:
    - not during NCAA evaluation period--If the coaches are allowed to be at camp/clinic, it shouldn't matter. They have eyes and can still evaluate talent.
    - it's called a *clinic* vs *camp* These terms are used interchangeably. If the coaches are there and they know you are coming they can still evaluate.
    - same clinic is offered several weeks in a season-Still doesn't matter. Coaches need to get kids on campus and offer many opportunities to get there.
    - name does not include the words *recruiting* or *prospects* This does not matter either. Overnight camps are offered for the younger players. These are not really used for recruiting unless you name is Tim Walton.
    - 100+ girls attending--camps are fundraisers. How else are they going to get players on campus for evaluations?
    - bunch of skill stations with 10+ girls each rotating through like an assembly line.--this is how camps work.
    Do your homework before you intend on attending a college camp or clinic. DD's should be in communication (expressing interest, updates, schedules) way before they show up to a camp. TB coach should also be in communication with college coach to let them know DD is coming to their camp. The girls on the "radar" will be in their own group so the coaches can keep a better eye on them. Yes that happens. Sometimes the schools will host a "prospect" camp by bringing in a select group of players that are already on the radar and have been evaluated prior to being invited. If you are invited to one of these, you will know it. You have to find a way to be seen.

    Bottom line. If you are interested in playing ball at a certain school, you need to get on campus as many times as possible. You need to get in front of the coaches any time you can through clinics, camps, showcases, videos, etc. As JAD has mentioned in many posts. Recruiting is a game of elimination. You want to hear a "no" as soon as you can, so you can mark that school off your list. Now you can focus on the other schools on your list. I am in sales and the worst thing that happens is when a customer doesn't say yes or no. They just drag you along not knowing which way they are gonna go. College recruiting is very similar. We are selling our kids!!! The more no's that you hear means you are getting closer to a yes! As soon as we heard a no or discovered the school was not a good fit, added another to the list. This is how my DD got recruited to the school she will be going to next year. A total of 2 emails were sent to this coach before he saw her in person, and this school was not even on her radar prior to last year and she didn't attend a camp at their school. Every journey is a bit different from another.

  8. The Following User Says Thank You to Orange Socks For This Useful Post:

    vicimus (09-27-2018)

  9. #7
    I can talk softball all day vicimus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Posts
    130
    Thanks
    129
    Thanked 57 Times in 22 Posts

    Default

    Like I said, the difference between the *invitation-only 40 HS girls recruiting camp* was night and day from the *money-grab* clinic where 100+ girls from MS through HS attended.

    The recruiting camp was 3 days; 1.5 days for player evaluation and 1.5 days of squad vs squad scrimmages.

    The money-grab cattle call clinic was about getting as many girls to attend as possible to rake in the $$$. No one had a clipboard evaluating anyone.

    Not all camps/clinics are created equal. There are plenty that are set up just to supplement the coach's and program's income.

    Quote Originally Posted by Orange Socks View Post
    Do your homework before you intend on attending a college camp or clinic. DD's should be in communication (expressing interest, updates, schedules) way before they show up to a camp. TB coach should also be in communication with college coach to let them know DD is coming to their camp. The girls on the "radar" will be in their own group so the coaches can keep a better eye on them. Yes that happens. Sometimes the schools will host a "prospect" camp by bringing in a select group of players that are already on the radar and have been evaluated prior to being invited. If you are invited to one of these, you will know it. You have to find a way to be seen.

    Bottom line. If you are interested in playing ball at a certain school, you need to get on campus as many times as possible. You need to get in front of the coaches any time you can through clinics, camps, showcases, videos, etc. As JAD has mentioned in many posts. Recruiting is a game of elimination. You want to hear a "no" as soon as you can, so you can mark that school off your list. Now you can focus on the other schools on your list. I am in sales and the worst thing that happens is when a customer doesn't say yes or no. They just drag you along not knowing which way they are gonna go. College recruiting is very similar. We are selling our kids!!! The more no's that you hear means you are getting closer to a yes! As soon as we heard a no or discovered the school was not a good fit, added another to the list. This is how my DD got recruited to the school she will be going to next year. A total of 2 emails were sent to this coach before he saw her in person, and this school was not even on her radar prior to last year and she didn't attend a camp at their school. Every journey is a bit different from another.

  10. #8
    I can talk softball all day Top_Notch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    262
    Thanks
    29
    Thanked 205 Times in 93 Posts

    Default

    To add, the school in question has two types of camps (multiple weekends):

    Mini-Camp is for Any and All Girls Age 8 - 18
    Elite Camp is for Any and All Girls age 13 - 18

    I assume the mini camp is not recruiting related. Honestly, I can't even tell if the 'elite' are purely instructional (which we don't need) versus potential recruitment camps.

  11. #9
    Certified softball maniac MNDad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    1,561
    Thanks
    1,928
    Thanked 1,436 Times in 729 Posts

    Default

    All college camps are open to the public, restricted only by age and number of participants. They’ll often notify players they want to see early, but an “invite only camp” would be against NCAA regulations.

    Camps vary by schools and players. We were always told to skip the multi day camps and attend one of the single days to get work with their coaches. They told us if we wanted to pay for multiple days have at it, but it wasn’t necessary.

    From what I observed at camps the girls who were D1 caliber always got a few extra looks and potential recruits had plenty of one on one time with coaches. We attended camps that didn’t work out as we had hoped, but I wouldn’t call any a money grab. The instruction is secondary. It’s a great opportunity to see the campus, meet the coaches, players and see their facilities. I’d urge girls to attend at least one camp at each division level for comparison. Some of the DII and DIII camps are as little as $15 and the D1 camps are usually under $100, or used to be anyway.
    Relax and enjoy the ride

  12. #10
    Softball Junkie Rambler34's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    770
    Thanks
    614
    Thanked 391 Times in 226 Posts

    Default

    I think doing your homework is the biggest thing. Talk to others who have attended if possible and see how it was ran. DD has gone to camps at her top four or five schools and has not been disappointed. Below is a recap of our experiences.

    One was at a mid-major DI and she was invited. The camp was huge and they were broken into positions and then into four teams. Invites and recruited kids played against commits and the others were off on another field. This one was good if you were an invite or commit but not if you signed up out of the blue. Not really any instruction.

    Went to 3 day AU camp which was limited to around 60 girls. While the coaches did tend to spend a lot of time with the ones you know they were interested in they also rotated through all of the groups all day. The kids rotated in groups of 4 or 5 and had a couple of players working drills at each spot. DD actually learned more at this one than just about any other one she went to.

    DII that transitions to DI this season. She has attended three and all three have been more like a tryout. They are called elite camps and it does seem like they are looking at abilities more than teaching.

    Mid major DI advertised a camp late in the day on Friday for the following Tuesday. Got DD and a teammate in. Ended up being the two of them and six others who ended up being there for a unofficial visit for a basketball game. Good one on one time and exposure.

    At another SEC school we avoided their large summer camps and have done three one days. Two were elite and one was seperate clinics for pitching, hitting, defense, and catching. The elite were more of a tryout setting with scrimmages while the clinics were highly informative yet still almost tryout like.


  13. The Following User Says Thank You to Rambler34 For This Useful Post:

    Chris8 (09-27-2018)

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •