College coaches are busy people, so athletes using the Contact Colleges feature will want to make sure their messages are concise and compelling.
Here are four helpful tips on how to give yourself the best chance for college coaches to read and reply to your messages.
1. Be concise
Writing short, succinct messages to college coaches is essential because they only have so much time to read messages from potential recruits.
When asked, most college coaches said to keep messages under 500 characters, which is approximately 3-4 sentences.
2. Include essential information
When we asked college coaches what information they need from athletes in order to start the recruiting process, this is what they said:
To quickly capture a coach's attention, include this information in the first sentence of your message.
3. Personalize the message to make it compelling
Next, in a couple of sentences, explain why you're a good fit athletically and academically for their school. This part of your message will need to be personalized for each college you're writing to, so it's recommended that you research each individual school.
Here are a few factors you might want to consider in your research:
School size, location, majors, tuition, academic scholarship opportunities, clubs/organizations, etc.
Roster structure, particular schemes they run, current or former players you admire, athletic scholarship opportunities, etc.
Once you have a solid understanding of why you would fit in well at a particular school, summarize it in a few short sentences to include in your message.
4. Mention your metrics and accolades
Including athletic metrics and any accolades can help college coaches understand how good you are right now, how you might project at the next level, and how you've set yourself apart from other athletes in your state or around the country.
Metrics might include:
Accolades might include:
Valedictorian, Saluditorian, etc.
Any individual team honors (MVP, Best Defensive Player, Leadership Awards, etc.)
Here's a great example of a message received + described by a D1 baseball coach:
"My name is Ben Bradbury and I'm a 6'3" 2024 LHP throwing 86-88mph with good CB and CH. All-State last year as a captain of my high school team with a 3.6 GPA. Parents and grandfather both attended XXXXX and I want to study business — a popular major at XXXXX. Played with XXXXX during summer ball last year. Saw XXXXX is high on the draft list and I hope to be in his place in 3-4 years."
When you send your message to a college, all coaches on that staff will receive your message. Furthermore, copies of your message will be sent to the coaches connected to your profile.