When student-athletes start the recruiting process, one of their first questions is: “When can college coaches contact high school athletes?” For NCAA Division 1 and Division 2 volleyball, college coaches can start reaching out to recruits beginning June 15 after the athlete’s sophomore year. NCAA Division 3 and NAIA coaches don’t have any restrictions on when they can begin contacting recruits, but they generally do their recruiting later than Division 1 and Division 2 colleges. However, there are still more dates to follow regarding dead periods, official and unofficial visits and more. Read on to learn more about the NCAA volleyball recruiting rules and calendar.
The NCAA volleyball recruiting rules and calendar outline when and how college coaches can reach out to athletes. These rules are in place to protect athletes from receiving an overwhelming amount of contact from college coaches. However, they can be a little misleading as they don’t accurately represent when recruiting really starts. At the D1 and higher level D2 programs, coaches scout recruits prior to the June 15 contact date and many lock down top talent as soon as the contact date arrives. The important part is for athletes and families to be familiar with these rules, so they are ready for any opportunity that presents itself. What are the best volleyball colleges?
The important date to remember is June 15 after an athlete’s sophomore year of high school. This is when NCAA Division 1 and Division 2 volleyball coaches can start to contact athletes, including extending verbal offers, phone calls and electronic communications (such as emails, texts, instant messages, etc.). This contact date is just one of the recruiting rules athletes and families should brush up on.
The NCAA Division 1 volleyball recruiting rules outline when and how college coaches from Division 1 teams can start reaching out to prospects. As previously mentioned, June 15 after sophomore year of high school is the most important date for athletes and families to remember. Starting this date, coaches can extend verbal offers and can partake in almost all forms of communication.
Keep in mind in-person recruiting for D1 programs is suspended through January 1, 2021 and college coaches are also encouraged to cancel or reschedule official and unofficial visits.
The important date to remember is June 15 after an athlete’s sophomore year of high school. At this time, all contact is permitted for NCAA Division 2 volleyball coaches.
Of all the NCAA divisions, D3 volleyball colleges have the most relaxed NCAA recruiting rules. There are no restrictions on most forms of contact. There are only restrictions on when recruits can start taking official visits and have off-campus contact with coaches.
College coaches at NAIA schools have a lot of freedom in the recruiting process and are not restricted in when or how they can reach out to athletes. Even though recruiting rules are more lenient, NAIA coaches usually start the recruiting process after NCAA Division 1 and Division 2 coaches.
Throughout the year, there are certain time periods set forth by the NCAA that regulate the way coaches can recruit athletes at that time. Remember: It’s up to the coach to follow these recruiting rules. However, it’s also important for families to know what to expect from coaches throughout the year so that they can make the most of the recruiting process. For example, student-athletes should avoid planning their campus visits during a dead period, as the coach will not be able to meet with them during that time.
Also, the NCAA Division 1 volleyball recruiting calendar is more restrictive than the Division 2 volleyball calendar. For D2 volleyball, all dates outside of a dead period are treated as a contact period. For D3 volleyball, the entire school year is treated as a contact period.
Dead period: During the dead period, coaches may not have any in-person contact with recruits or their families. Coaches can still keep in touch with recruits via phone, email, social media and other approved electronic means of communication.
All other dates that don’t fit into the dead period are in the contact period, during which coaches can email, text, call, direct message and contact athletes and their parents through any NCAA-approved method.
Insider tip: Despite the impact that coronavirus had on college sports, as of June 1, 2021, the NCAA resumed its regular recruiting rules and activity! Coaches are actively working to fill their rosters, so student-athletes should be proactive in reaching out to coaches. Read up on how the extra year of eligibility granted to athletes who were most affected by the pandemic in 2020 will impact future recruiting classes.