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Tell me about the myths of softball recruiting

Jul 27, 2015
101
28
My point exactly. If given the opportunity to play for a perennial bottom dweller mid major who wins 5 games a year, or a D3 that competes for conference titles every year which would you choose?

Your pitching at too low a level comment cracks me up! if a school offers your major, you love the school and choose to go there, how is that too low a level? I answered this question a lot when DD committed to a D3. Some folks get so hung up on the level kids play. It’s definitely a parent issue.

DDs D3 in TN has kids from WA,TX, IL, PA and TN.
Jdaddy, this has nothing to do with this post. But how is it possible for your DD's college coaches to recruit kids that are all the same height? The height spread is only 3" apart. I have seen some teams where the roster is oddly made up of either all blondes or all brunettes, but I have never seen a roster with kids that are so similar in height. Just an observation. Good luck to Kenzie this spring!
It took me a bit to figure out the school you all are talking about My 5'9" daughter has an offer to play there so the coach does recruit taller players.
 
Feb 18, 2012
29
3
Southwest PA
While I disagree on a couple of things, you hit the main point of difference between the divisons in terms of their top teams. It is depth.

It is the same reason that the mid-majors D1 rarely get out of regionals and super regionals - it isn't that they don't have 4-6 players who can compete against say a Michigan or a Florida - what they don't have is 10-12 of them. Or in a lot of cases a second ace pitcher. It is harder for them to get runs from the bottom order or have 3 elite outfielders and so on. Their margin for error is SO small. One injury kills them. Or one bad outing from their pitcher. Or whatever.

Also below the mid-D1 teams there are very few teams where you get the best talent going to a school for the softball. In mid-lower D1 there are a lot of very marginal players going to D1 schools outside the Power conferences and the best teams in each of the other conferences where they possibly would have been better served somewhere else at least softball wise.

The other thing you see in D1 is that more of the teams have made and continue to make an investment in their programs. In D2 & D3 a much smaller % of teams invest in their programs - the ones that do are in general successful. They get to recruit. They get to the player who is more focused on the academics or wanted a certain major or had specific things they wanted out of college or a college environment.

The majority of D3 coaches are not full time. The field often looks like a HS park or a local rec park - sometimes it is. Or it has field lines for every single sport on it... and so on. The best often look like you would expect from most mid-major D1 programs.

The college DD's is heading to next year has put some really nice kids on the field but not exactly great softball players. Their record has not been good in recent years. However the university started investing in the program a couple of years ago - they got a new field last year, the recruiting budget increased, the HC is full time and the coaches can now recruit much better and get in front of more girls to sell their school as an option. The incoming classes are all of a sudden coming from much better travel teams and the incoming class is larger and more talented. Instead of a couple of non-local girls to the school, it is now top-heavy with girls from CA & FL who have the bigger names on their jerseys from teams much higher within those organizations. Going to be fun for DD to be part of it.

Where I disagree:
- The lower D1 is fairly awful. Those SWAC teams in particular mostly couldn't compete in a reasonable D2 or D3 conference
- The Ivies don't struggle to get D1 level players. What they struggle with is that their pool of players of D1 quality they can recruit is much smaller and therefore they struggle to field teams with depth of higher end quality D1 players. And of course the fact they don't provide athletic money.
Marriard I agree there are some bad D1 schools that would struggle against better D2 schools. You think some of the teams in the SWAC are bad there are some schools in the MEAC that would make them look good.:)
 
Oct 2, 2011
3,469
113
Florida
Marriard I agree there are some bad D1 schools that would struggle against better D2 schools. You think some of the teams in the SWAC are bad there are some schools in the MEAC that would make them look good.:)
Some... yes The northern MEAC division and the bottom of the southern division teams are not good. Just had a look at South Carolina State - they got run-ruled in all but 7 games last season and went 0-34. That is some ugly softball.
However, the top of the MEAC Southern Divison with Bethune-Cookman and Florida A&M are very reasonable D1 teams - their overall record is always skewed because they always play in all the big Florida D1 pre-season tourneys for their non-conference schedule and generally take a lot of losses because they play some big time programs. Their late-season non-conference games last year I think were Florida and UCF.
 
Apr 12, 2016
315
28
Minnesota
Something that I think goes under appreciated is playing for a winning team no matter what division. My sister-in-law played D1 softball at George Mason. I think in the time she was there they won maybe 20 games in 4 years. They were terrible. I played D3 baseball at 2 different schools where we made multiple regional appearances and won 2 conference championships. While I wouldn’t pretend that it was D1, I enjoyed it because we were successful. I don’t think I could lose no matter the level...I would just want to play for a winner.
While I disagree on a couple of things, you hit the main point of difference between the divisons in terms of their top teams. It is depth.

It is the same reason that the mid-majors D1 rarely get out of regionals and super regionals - it isn't that they don't have 4-6 players who can compete against say a Michigan or a Florida - what they don't have is 10-12 of them. Or in a lot of cases a second ace pitcher. It is harder for them to get runs from the bottom order or have 3 elite outfielders and so on. Their margin for error is SO small. One injury kills them. Or one bad outing from their pitcher. Or whatever.

Also below the mid-D1 teams there are very few teams where you get the best talent going to a school for the softball. In mid-lower D1 there are a lot of very marginal players going to D1 schools outside the Power conferences and the best teams in each of the other conferences where they possibly would have been better served somewhere else at least softball wise.

The other thing you see in D1 is that more of the teams have made and continue to make an investment in their programs. In D2 & D3 a much smaller % of teams invest in their programs - the ones that do are in general successful. They get to recruit. They get to the player who is more focused on the academics or wanted a certain major or had specific things they wanted out of college or a college environment.

The majority of D3 coaches are not full time. The field often looks like a HS park or a local rec park - sometimes it is. Or it has field lines for every single sport on it... and so on. The best often look like you would expect from most mid-major D1 programs.

The college DD's is heading to next year has put some really nice kids on the field but not exactly great softball players. Their record has not been good in recent years. However the university started investing in the program a couple of years ago - they got a new field last year, the recruiting budget increased, the HC is full time and the coaches can now recruit much better and get in front of more girls to sell their school as an option. The incoming classes are all of a sudden coming from much better travel teams and the incoming class is larger and more talented. Instead of a couple of non-local girls to the school, it is now top-heavy with girls from CA & FL who have the bigger names on their jerseys from teams much higher within those organizations. Going to be fun for DD to be part of it.

Where I disagree:
- The lower D1 is fairly awful. Those SWAC teams in particular mostly couldn't compete in a reasonable D2 or D3 conference
- The Ivies don't struggle to get D1 level players. What they struggle with is that their pool of players of D1 quality they can recruit is much smaller and therefore they struggle to field teams with depth of higher end quality D1 players. And of course the fact they don't provide athletic money.
A very good post. Thank you. At the end of the day if your DD gets to play softball in college and is happy with where she landed everyone should call that a win. I have my own personal feelings about playing at the highest level you can. Funny how a D3 team stacked with D1 and D2 players is OK but the whole board wants to complain about a 14U B team that goes 45-2 on the season.
 
Dec 2, 2013
1,092
83
Texas
A very good post. Thank you. At the end of the day if your DD gets to play softball in college and is happy with where she landed everyone should call that a win. I have my own personal feelings about playing at the highest level you can. Funny how a D3 team stacked with D1 and D2 players is OK but the whole board wants to complain about a 14U B team that goes 45-2 on the season.
i guess that's why UT Tyler was able to move up to D2. But that has nothing to do with the softball team. That's the whole program.
 
Sep 29, 2010
1,084
83
Knoxville, TN
A very good post. Thank you. At the end of the day if your DD gets to play softball in college and is happy with where she landed everyone should call that a win. I have my own personal feelings about playing at the highest level you can. Funny how a D3 team stacked with D1 and D2 players is OK but the whole board wants to complain about a 14U B team that goes 45-2 on the season.
If you believe it’s more important for SA’s to play at the highest level they can, rather than going to a school they love and earning the degree they will use for the next 30 years then we definitely disagree. If given a choice between the two, I would hope parents and their kids choose the degree.

To compare a group of 8th and 9th graders who’s coach has them trophy chasing to college teams recruiting the best players they can and playing to win is just a really bad take, IMO.
 
Aug 1, 2019
55
18
Jdaddy, this has nothing to do with this post. But how is it possible for your DD's college coaches to recruit kids that are all the same height? The height spread is only 3" apart. I have seen some teams where the roster is oddly made up of either all blondes or all brunettes, but I have never seen a roster with kids that are so similar in height. Just an observation. Good luck to Kenzie this spring!
I've learned to read bio stats with a big grain of salt.
My DD is listed on her roster as 5'7". She's 5'3".
Our high school will list a football player at 160 lbs. Yet when wrestling starts, that same kid is wrestling 132
 
Oct 2, 2018
79
18
Georgia
I've learned to read bio stats with a big grain of salt.
My DD is listed on her roster as 5'7". She's 5'3".
Our high school will list a football player at 160 lbs. Yet when wrestling starts, that same kid is wrestling 132
Funny! 25 years ago when i played baseball i was a 6'2 RHP 205 pounds. After graduation my driver's license said i am 5'11 175 pounds
 
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