You know what they say: It takes a village.
Although I don’t know what that means for those of us who grew up in cities. It took that many more people to help my parents?
But it’s no joke that as the recruiting landscape gets weirder and targets younger athletes (whether we — or LeBron — like it or not), young student-athletes need their parents’ and guardians’ help to understand what they need to do to succeed. Here are three ways to help your child in recruiting.
Give them your unconditional support.
One of the important themes we highlight here is the importance to maintain that critical distinction between parent and coach in a student-athlete’s life. We even–unintentionally–started a bit of a battle on our Facebook page on the topic of whether parents should watch practices.
We’ll stick to our guns: Coaches coach. Parents support. As any of the former student-athletes on our team can tell you, there’s no better feeling than knowing there’s someone who supports you in the choices you’re making, and in the academic and athletic performance you’re doing. You’re used to giving them your unconditional love; your unconditional support in their recruiting is just a bit of frosting on that delicious tres leches cake of familial affection. (At least it’s tres leches for me. Maybe it’s chocolate for you?)
Teach your child how to love being part of the team.
Whether it’s The Packaged Deal or our partners at Go Pro Workouts or other coaches I’ve interviewed for the blog, I always hear this same statement: No college coach wants to babysit their players. On either end of the spectrum: a temper tantrum after a bad play, or a bad, holier-than-thou attitude, even if they’re the star shooter for the team.
Learning how to be a responsible, humble, mature teammate on the field, in the dugout, on the track — or anywhere your sport takes place — starts with your positive example.
Be a resource for your child, and find help when you need it.
You’re busy. We’re all busy. (I love reading all of the books about men and women and business in the modern world. Really–it’s interesting to me. But I digress.) You’re busy, but your sons and daughters are also overwhelmed with classes, practices and other extracurricular activities. So if there is anything you can do to help them stay organized or learn about certain schools — within reason — all the better. It’s, again, being team players. Helping your child create a plan and follow through with it, whether it’s a timeline, or understanding fine print, or just holding the camera while to record a skills video.
And when you don’t know the answer to a question your son or daughter has, we’re there to help. It’s what we do. Side note: that family in the photo above? They came to get their recruiting advice in person just a few weeks ago. Just saying.