In an ideal world, college coaches would have the time and budget to watch recruits compete in person all the time, but this is not the reality for coaches and athletes. Instead, a recruiting video is often the first time a college coach is introduced to a potential recruit and their skillset. As college coaches search recruiting databases to evaluate talent, they take time to review athlete profiles and watch recruiting video. As a recruit’s first impression on a college coach, it’s critical to create a recruiting video that highlights what college coaches are looking for in an athlete.
In this section, we outline how a recruit can create a truly impactful video, including how to capture footage and what to do with the video when it’s complete.
Crafting a tennis recruiting video is easier said than done, especially when not all recruits have unlimited access to tennis courts. However, there are still plenty of ways for men’s tennis recruits to stand out and get on a coach’s radar. A tennis skills video is different from a traditional highlight video; it doesn’t have to be perfect—coaches just want a better understanding of a recruit’s abilities.
The best way to make sure that college coaches see an athlete’s recruiting video is to send an introductory email. This is a great way to let a college coach know that the recruit is interested in their tennis program and share their recruiting profile and video for the coach to review. To begin the email, state why the recruit is interested in the tennis program and offer a couple of reasons why he believes he is a good fit for the team. Include a link to the athlete’s NCSA Recruiting Profile, where he should have his recruiting video posted. End the email by setting up a specific time that he plans to call the coach or invite the coach to a tournament or game that the recruit is attending. This shows that the recruit is serious about his interest in the program and dedicated to continuing the conversation.
Be sure to include the following basic information, as well:
General information: name, graduation year, high school and club name
Academics: GPA, test scores
Athletics: sport specific stats and relevant measurables
Contact information: phone number and email, as well as your club and high school coach contact info
College coaches want to know that an athlete has a strong grasp of the fundamentals and has developed the skillset to elevate these basic shots with physical power and tennis IQ. The basic shots include forehands, backhands, serves, returns and volleys. Include footage of the athlete rallying with a partner who feeds them a variety of different shots, like wide balls, short balls and spin, to demonstrate how the athlete reacts. Coaches are also looking for speed, agility and endurance when it comes to footwork. An elite athlete sets himself up for each shot and recovers to the middle quickly after returning the ball.
When it comes to match footage, coaches want to see how an athlete sets up points and their follow-through. It’s especially important to show footage of matches against tough competition where the athlete must remain positive and focused. This will both demonstrate to the coach how the athlete handles pressure and how he carries himself on court.
Creating a recruiting video is an easy three-step process, if the recruit understands what college coaches want to see in a tennis recruiting video, as we’ve outlined in the above section.
Tennis recruiting videos should be kept to no more than three to four minutes long. College coaches don’t have much time to spend watching recruiting video, so athletes have roughly 30 seconds to catch their attention. It’s important to lead with the recruit’s strongest clips that highlight their skillset.
When filming rally play, include the following:
Point play, or match footage, should highlight:
Not confident in creating your own recruiting video? NCSA offers college recruiting video services led by a team of talented video editors that are here to help recruits take their raw video footage and create a cohesive recruiting video that can be used to promote their skillset. Once the recruit’s video has been professionally edited, recruits can upload their tennis highlight video to their NCSA Recruiting Profile, which college coaches can easily access.