I hadn't surfed onto here much lately so I thought i'd drop a friendly hello and let you know how life is going since leaving the "private coaching" life for the bright lights, big city of college ball in Providence RI.
I'm not sure what I expected but it's not what I expected!! Without question, the hardest part has been recruiting. I'm given full autonomy over the pitching and 1 scholarship per year to fill. But, convincing the top of the line recruits to come to Providence, as opposed to Power 5 type schools is a challenge. Division 1 or not, Big East conference or not, Providence doesn't get the ESPN prime time games (yet). But, all it takes is one stud to come along. Call me arrogant but, I believe I can help someone in unimaginable ways become the best they can through my own experiences and what I thought was a good private coaching career of helping kids become their best to go onto schools. But, again, the top of the line kids choose schools for their own reasons: boyfriends, close to home, being on TV more, etc. so, recruiting has been a challenge.
Remind your pitchers and daughters that if you send emails with video footage, they WILL get seen. Everyone is looking for that diamond in the rough. Just remember, per NCAA rules, unless she's a Junior or above, we CANNOT reply back to her email, text or calls. Even if she's a sophmore throwing 70mph, the rules don't allow it. I can talk to her coaches.. but not her or her parents. So, make sure your kids are NOT discouraged if they send videos, emails that are not returned, if underage.
I used to think college clinics/camps were a waste of time and cash grabs. NOT SO!! Go to as many as you can get to and afford, if you're interested in the school. Clinics allow us to bypass the rule of no contact, allow us to WORK with the pitchers (hitters), get to know the kid, and let them get to know us. While there are certainly some that are pure cash grabs, many are not. If your kid has sincere interest in a school, go to the camps and get on the coach's radar. I never knew how important they are until I got to Providence. The ability actually work with the kid, see how they take your coaching, see their attitude, see the work ethic, what questions they ask, etc. is invaluable and not something that can be done on a visit (official or unofficial) to the school. Team coaches (travel or school) can always call, discuss, promote, etc. but parents cannot. If you are both a coach and parent, be sure you have your "coach hat" on when you make the call. We are having a clinic MLK weekend in January, I'm still searching for that 2020 grad pitcher that wants to not only play D1 but, also learn from someone who can hopefully make her the best pitcher she can possibly be. (folks interested in our clinic, contact asst. coach at Providence Bree Nasti).
Many of you probably have lots of questions about recruiting. If I can help answer them, I'm only an Email away. I can still do "clinics" for organizations but, NCAA regs do not allow for "private lessons" for kids above 6th grade I think. In theory, a coach can do 5 "clinics" of 2 pitchers each during a day and consider it to be a "clinic" not lessons but, it's just the hoops we have to jump through. And I'm absolutely certain that Nick Saben, Jerry "Tark the Shark" Tarkanian, etc. follow(ed) these rules to the letter!! ha ha. The rulebook for recruiting is literally as thick as a phonebook and EVERY coach has to pass a test on it before you're allowed to go on the road recruiting.
If anyone is going to the national NFCA convention in Chicago this week, please seek me out to say hello. I know I'll be at the pitching "lectures" to learn how to pitch but, will attend others as well and am always open to a beer if you're buying! I'll also be a guest speaker at the Wisconsin fastpitch coaches convention Feb 22 weekend if anyone will be there.
I'm glad this site is still as active as ever. Please remember to just keep it simple everyone. Make sure they have FUN in the learning process, not confused by too much jargon.
Take care all