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Late bloomer

Jul 31, 2015
8
3
DD is seeing a significant increase in D3/D2/D1 interest. 2021 RHP/1B. Good bat. Good student.

In 3 weeks went from meek interest by D3s into a "full ride" (athletics+academics+monthly stipend) offer from a mid-major D1. We believe she caught the attention of one of the big-name SoCal club coaches at a PGF event last Saturday. By Sunday she had a crowd watching her. To her credit, she delivered.

Pre-Thanksgiving SurfCity is coming up and it seems like interest might ramp quickly. She doesn't have a specific school or set of schools targeted. Wants a big school, close to home if possible, liberal arts major. Her Dad and I favor academics over softball. We live in CA.

Realizing I might get the wet noodle for not posting this in Parent Brag, I could genuinely use some advice.

How to prioritize schools when DD really has no real preference? (She sends emails to about 70 schools.)

What to do about winter camps/clinics? Do we show love to everyone who loves us? Or do we just pick a few schools and try to get to know those coaches and hope she clicks with one of them?

Is there a magic question to ask so we know going in what the coach and team experience is really like?

How to deal with the potential timing mismatch of offers? Should we let the first few offers go and see what materializes later? Do offers have expiration dates?

Also, she is feeling like there is another half-step up in mph/spin/RBIs coming.

I don't know what I don't know. Anyone have a similar experience? Thanks.
 
Aug 19, 2015
826
43
Atlanta, GA
I think our situation is somewhat similar, although DD is a 2022. I can't comment on some of your questions because we're not there yet. But for DD and us, academics is first. If she gets an offer to play softball at a school that has a great academic reputation, that would be gravy and she would be thrilled to play. But it's more important to all of us that she go to a really good school than that she play softball in college.

DD has law school aspirations and we are fortunate enough to have saved $$ for college via a 529 plan since the day DD was assigned a Social Security number. We can pay for state schools out of pocket, although some of the expensive schools she would love would require some scholarship money (whether athletic or academic). I know that there are plenty of girls who choose their schools based upon where they can play softball because they are wholly dependent on that scholarship, but DD will not be willing to go to Mediocre University only so she can play softball.

So, I recommend that your DD leave softball out of the equation for just the time being and look at the SCHOOLS. What's important to her? Big/small? Urban/rural? Sororities? Big-time football program? A certain major? Living on vs. living off-campus? She needs to pick a school where she would want to stay if she couldn't play softball anymore. If the ONLY reason she would consider the school is the softball program/coach, that's not a good fit. Injuries happen, coaching staffs leave, girls lose interest or get too busy to keep playing. You don't want her to have to transfer or leave if she can't/doesn't want to play anymore.
 
Last edited:
Apr 16, 2013
911
43
So, I recommend that your DD leave softball out of the equation for just the time being and look at the SCHOOLS.
THIS THIS THIS!!!! ^^^^^^^

Your DD is almost in an enviable position. My DD is solely looking for scholarship money from programs that fit her education narrative. If she doesn't get it, she just won't play softball in college. It sounds like your DD might not know what she wants to do, but is potentially being offered money from lots of schools. If that's the case, just make sure she focuses on what schools she would like to go to and does that school want her to play for them? Yes? No? In the end, if that's where she wants to go to school then that's the #1 question that needs to be answered. Everything else is second.
 
Jun 11, 2012
445
28
Making sure the school is the right fit is huge. And that’s not just academically or athletically. It’s the whole package, location, frats/sororities, student life, forms etc.

DD is a sophomore and I honestly couldn’t imagine her anywhere but where she is. When we toured she just knew it was where she wanted to be.
Up until that point every other school was just okay or she hated it.
Since she wants to go to school close to home why not take a day or two and visit some campuses. You don’t even need to take an official tour, just walk around campus and see what she thinks. Then target the coaches of those schools.
 
May 9, 2010
19
3
Spend some time during one of her vacations, to visit some of the schools that she is interested in. That should help narrow down the field and really focus on the schools and coaches that she wants to be recruited by.
 
Dec 2, 2013
1,033
63
Texas
How to prioritize schools when DD really has no real preference? (She sends emails to about 70 schools.) Now is the time to start getting serious about whittling the number of schools down to a manageable number. Y'all need to find reasons to start marking schools off your list. We had a kid that ended up committing to an Ivy, but her emailing pattern was all over the place that made me scratch my head. Are you high academic or not?

What to do about winter camps/clinics? Do we show love to everyone who loves us? Or do we just pick a few schools and try to get to know those coaches and hope she clicks with one of them? This is part of the process where you let your money do the talking. Attend the camps that are truly good fits. Also, you haven't mentioned anything about your team's recruiting coordinator input.

Is there a magic question to ask so we know going in what the coach and team experience is really like? How would you describe your team culture? Talk to current or former players. Lots of cyber stalking!

How to deal with the potential timing mismatch of offers? Should we let the first few offers go and see what materializes later? Do offers have expiration dates? You will evaluate the offers as they come. Some coaches will give you a timeline and others will give you a general offer especially D3's. D1's and D2's are allocating a set number of $$$ and they are putting their pieces of the puzzle together. They will need a commitment fairly quickly or you run the risk of not having a chair when the music stops playing.

Also, she is feeling like there is another half-step (this better be the case-all players should continually improve-don't be the "peaked out in 8th grade player")up in mph/spin/RBIs coming. Coach's job is to project her ability based on what they see and prior experience.
 

Strike2

Allergic to BS
Nov 14, 2014
757
43
70 schools??? Wow. It would be easy to get distracted by the shiny objects dangled by schools you'd otherwise never consider.

Echoing CMMom1740, first figure out what's important and most attractive in the schools you're looking at without considering softball...academics, location, cost, etc. Rank those schools in descending order. I wouldn't work with much more than a dozen. Next, add softball prospects into the mix and see where the overlap might be, and then focus on those top schools that also offer good prospects to play ball.

College sports appears a real crap-shoot, even for the best athletes. Injuries, player and coaching moves, and changing personal priorities are all unpredictable. There's no "magic question" you can ask, but coaching record, team record, and player turnover are good clues.
 

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