Deciding on an Investment in Recruiting Publicity

With 7% of high school athletes making it to the NCAA level, athletes and their parents can use all the help they can get. Recruiting publicity services are athletic profile websites available for free or for a fee. But how do you know which one will best serve you?

Is there an advantage in paying for a publicity service? 

Per the NCAA, a recruiting/scouting service is "any individual, organization, entity or segment of an entity that is primarily involved in providing information about prospective student-athletes." We call these "recruiting publicity services," given that is their product.

While some paid recruiting services are smaller and sport specific, others are huge companies. There plenty of options with varying degrees of value depending on the athlete. That said, the fact is most qualified athletes can find a spot on a college roster without a recruiting publicity service.

Sparks Consulting is not a recruiting service; we do not contact college coaches with your information. As former college coaches, we know publicity services serve as a second-tier resource. 

Students who take the initiative to contact coaches directly are almost always more successful in the process. This is particularly true with selective universities. We live in a world where much occurs with the click of a smart phone. College coaches want to know whether recruits are mature enough to take the initiative and have the ability to invest in the process.

About Recruiting Publicity Services

Sports fall into two categories in their primary mode of talent identification: objective and subjective.

(As you probably know, baseball is objectively evaluated)

When talent is identified objectively, (metrics like speed, etc.) athletes do not require publicity services. Sports that identify athletes subjectively may benefit from added exposure provided by recruiting services.

The process most widely used to evaluate players is the five-tool method.

These include: hitting, power, fielding, throwing and speed. These tools rank differently depending upon which skills are most important to the player's position. For example, pitchers are primarily evaluated based on consistent fastball velocity.

Therefore, the primary recruiting model for baseball is objective.

That said, baseball is fickle in that most sports are closer 70/30 in the objective or subjective bias of talent identification measures.(It's impossible to play a perfect game, after all...) Baseball is closer to 50/50.

Baseball players may benefit from supplementing their process with recruiting services.*

There are sport-specific and semi-sport specific services for baseball. More specific services understand baseball recruiting and scouting better than national brands - particularly given its objective and subjective nature. We've broken down the options below. 

* The NCAA does not endorse or certify recruiting/scouting services for Division II or Division III institutions. However, in Division I Baseball, the NCAA does publish an approved list of recruiting/scouting services annually.

We provide college counseling for baseball players seeking admission at selective universities. Our clients succeed in the recruiting process while going beyond it to find the best college fit for the rest of their lives.

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