It’s the end of the season. The fans empty the seats, the players pack up and start to train for the next season. This is when the real work begins.
The recruiting season is finally starting to heat up. After sifting daily through tapes and e-mails and phone messages, coaches finally have time to see some potential Northern Kentucky University players in action. It’s time for the coaches to make their pitch, in order to continue the success of NKU athletics.
The recruiting process is a year-round job for all coaches. It starts with the videos, it continues with the e-mails and it concludes with the road trips, late-night phone calls and eventual commitments or denials from the players.
With the evolution of the internet, the recruiting process has really picked up. Step inside any coaches office and you will see a plethora of recruiting material. For example, Head Volleyball Coach, Carlos Chia, has stacks and stacks of tapes.
Hidden on shelves, under table, in drawers, they’re everywhere. Head Baseball Coach, Todd Asalon is much the same way.
His shelves and tables are littered with everything from letters to tapes to folders, all having to do with recruiting.
The internet has also made it possible for talent to be found anywhere around the globe.
“I get mass mailings sent to my e-mail, from people who are interested in the opportunity to play,” said Chia. “I’ve received e-mails from Australia, Argentina, Brazil, they come from all over.”
Women’s Basketball Coach, Nancy Winstel, says recruiting is a 365 day a year process. Winstel and Assistant Coach, Brian Neal find themselves doing some kind of recruiting work every day.
“We spend a lot of time going to different shootouts and tournaments,” said Winstel, “I might make a phone call on Christmas Morning if I have to.”
Asalon says although he finds most of his recruits in the tri-state area, the road trips and the time spent going to games, really gets to you.
“We probably see 3-4 games per week,” said Asalon. “Recruiting is what it’s all about, it’s how you build a successful program.”
Chia uses his position as coach of the junior Olympics team in order to help him recruit players.
He travels across the country with the team every summer, allowing him to make contacts and follow players from a very early age.
“Recruiting is the most humbling experience a coach can go through,” said Chia. Every coach I talked to said the most rewarding part is having that one recruit decide to play for your team.
“When the player picks another school over yours, it is frustrating, but it’s all part of the game,” said Winstel.
“If I had a nickel for every time someone told me no, I would be a millionaire.”
So when the last shot has been taken, the last pitch has been thrown, the last point scored, that is when the real dedication starts.
This is when the coaches start there dedication to building great programs and making their sales pitch.
Kyle Burch is the Sports Editor for The Northerner. You can e-mail Kyle at firstname.lastname@example.org.