College basketball recruiting starts extremely early and doesn’t end until you sign a letter of commitment with the college of your choice. In most cases, the top-ranked college basketball programs in the country recruit the earliest. College basketball coaches from elite Division 1 programs start scouting basketball players in junior high and look for athletes who have varsity and travel ball experience, were ranked as top-tier recruits at a tournament or a showcase and/or received prestigious awards like All-State honors. For basketball recruits who aren’t quite at this level, sophomore year is probably the best time to start the recruiting process. As a sophomore, you should identify your list of target schools and begin reaching out to basketball coaches at these schools to get on their radar.
Learning how college basketball coaches look at recruiting can help you understand the process and boost your recruiting efforts. Think of the college basketball recruiting process like a funnel. At the top of the funnel, thousands of potential college basketball recruits get thrown into the mix. To pare down their list of recruits, college basketball coaches begin initial evaluations, focusing on basic requirements like height, weight, grad year and position. Next, coaches contact those they’ve identified as potential fits to see if there’s mutual interest. More extensive evaluations continue, and college basketball coaches trim down their list of recruits even further. Near the bottom of the funnel, coaches invite college basketball recruits to campus on official and unofficial visits. At the very end of the process, coaches extend scholarship offers and solidify their recruiting classes.
The funnel is beginning to narrow. Evaluations continue with the smaller class of potential recruits, which narrows it down even further. Near the bottom of the funnel, coaches are inviting recruits on official visits and extending offers. There’s no point in striving for a D1 scholarship if you don’t have the size or skills to compete with the elite. Most importantly, you need to be honest with yourself about your desire to compete on a college basketball team. From practice sessions to game day, everything is ramped up from your high school basketball experience.
QUESTIONS ABOUT RECRUITING?
Click here to get the basics from our Men’s Basketball Recruiting Guide or click here for our Women’s Basketball Recruiting Guide.