What college coaches are looking for in an email: the other stuff
This info isn’t for the kid whose phone is ringing off the hook. This is for an athlete with a more average skill set that is looking for additional school options.
College coaches generally read and digest emails and video very similar no matter the level. What is a coach looking for, wanting to hear, or wanting to see?
There are several do’s and do nots when it comes to emailing a coach. First and foremost, mass emails or signing up for a recruiting service that sends out your info is instantly trashed. If you as a player cannot take the time to detail an email specifically to a coach, why would a coach take the time to read your email or reach out to you. Secondly, don’t tell a coach you can play at his program, specifically if you’ve never seen them play.
Your unspecified email shows a lack of understanding of where you might fit as a player, shows no value in the individual program, or if you can even play at that program. Coaches love humility and respect for their program. Show a coach that you know where you fit at the college level; do not use your stats as the make or break tool. You hit .437 in high school, not in college. When a high school shortstop says “I’m likely a college second baseman”, or “I’m likely a corner guy at the college level”, we don’t think the kid sucks, we think he understands college isn’t high school. When coaches see a kid that knows what he’s wanting to do isn’t going to be easy, that he’s essentially starting over, that he’s essentially looking for a place to keep working, we say “he gets it.” Whatever you did before doesn’t really matter when you set foot on campus, seeing a kid show that humility is a game changer. Coaches want “we guys” and “program guys;” every roster has them and coaches read emails looking for those guys. Can you show a coach that you want to play for the name on the front vs. the back?
There are several important pieces of info a college coach wants in the original email. Keep the email short. We do not need to know what your fielding percentage was your junior year, we’re not interested in you winning summer MVP of the “what’s that tournament” in that one city. 5 absolute musts in the original email.
GPA & ACT/SAT
The video, along with the grades, will be the big deciding factor in whether you get a response or not. But if you’re looking to set yourself apart from others, let the coach know why you’re emailing his school. Don’t email schools you don’t have interest in. What is your why? Coaches love to know why you emailed. Are you searching for playing time, do you want to win, do you want to play for a respected coach, location, is it major specific, do you know the conference well, do you just love baseball and want to keep playing? You can still keep this short, but give an explanation as to why their school caught your eye.
Video-Hitters- Side view (see chest and hands) & from behind (ball flight on field)
Watching hitters hit front toss into the top left corner of the cage for ten minutes doesn’t appeal to coaches. There is zero need to edit. If coaches see the clips cutting from barreled ball to barreled ball, we’re just going to assume you’re hiding that it took 30 swings to barrel 8 baseballs. Seeing a player mishit a baseball doesn’t make a coach say no. I want to see a full round of batting practice, preferably on field. This doesn’t need to be a 10 minute video.
Videos- Pitching-Side View (see chest and hands) & From behind (ball flight)
In game footage works best if at all possible, but bullpens are suitable as well. Coaches look to see arm action and a smooth delivery. Radar gun in view of the camera if possible. Throwing strikes are huge along with how you go about it. If you’re throwing a bullpen in a cutoff, not interested, unless you’re 90+, then you can wear whatever. Wear a hat, baseball pants, and look like a ball player who takes his craft seriously.