S is a leftie pitcher. He has offers at a couple solid D3 schools but they aren’t his first choice. He has interest and positive prereads from a couple other schools with encouragement to come visit. He plays travel fall ball so our September weekends are totally booked.
The schools where he has firm offers won’t give him a deadline for committing but say vaguely ominous things about not over-recruiting and taking commits in the order they come.
The other, possibly more desirable, schools seem fine with October visits but I am worried that will be too late and other kids will have committed by then.
How much should we prioritize getting to these campuses asap?
Also, our S has been having all the conversations with coaches so far so we as parents are at the mercy of whatever he thought to ask and however he is passing on the coach response. And more than I expected has been over text (including some preread submissions and results). When, if ever, is it reasonable for a parent to reach out to a coach?
Working through the timing can be difficult. I would fully expect that offers he has open at schools that aren’t his top choice (of course the coaches know that since your S hasn’t committed) will not last until October. The coaches want to wrap things up by ED, if at all possible.
If he wants to let the offers go at his lower priority schools to attend October visits at higher priority schools that is his prerogative. The risk is that he ends up with no offer/slot. But, that’s how it goes…it will become increasingly difficult for your S to ask coaches at lower priority schools to keep a slot for him when it’s not his top choice. Some coaches would have pulled the offer already.
As far as your son handling communications, that is how it should be. When offers are being made, it is appropriate for parents to also get on that call/zoom. It is not appropriate for parents to contact the coaches directly, without the student present. IMO of course.
He should definitely prioritize visiting schools that are on the top of his list. Travel ball needs to be secondary at this point of the process.
Agree. If he’s already got his set list and is not looking to get recruited by other schools that might be at his TB games, he needs to make the campus visits a priority. My ds’ and DD’s TB coaches always put the college visits first, and totally understood if games were going to be missed.
I would agree with others that travel ball should be put to the side for college visits. That is a main reason that we played travel ball - to be able to move up to the next level. That opportunity for your S24 is now, so he should take it. Otherwise, coaches will move on.
Also consider skipping a few days of school to do visits during the week.
If possible I’d probably try to get those visits in soon. Maybe even let those coaches know that you have offers and you’re hoping to make a decision soon, but that you’d rather visit and clarify your status with them before deciding.
Some of this depends how disappointed he’d be if the current offers disappear. There’ll always be a D3 school somewhere for a good athlete but not always at schools that fit as well academically, socially, financially.
Does the coach at your son’s preferred school know that his school is his preferred choice and that he would immediately commit if offered?
When is the best suggested time for engaging with that coach and bring up that you are being asked by other coach/coaches to commit and have little time left, so would like to seek further confirmation of an offer from his preferred coach/team/school? That maybe the only way to push a “stalling coach” to make a decision between “recruits he’s waiting to hear from” and a recruit slightly lower on his list but willing to immediately commit.
OP never said there is one school that their son would immediately commit to. Looks like there are multiple “possibly more desirable” schools.
The kid needs to visit these schools ASAP.
Visit today. Lol. A good friend of mines son was in similar position and had 2 schools kinda going after him. He went with the one he really wanted but the other coach kinda wanted him more. Long story short he’s not playing baseball anymore.
The school that sounded better wouldn’t support him being pre med. He had to take off time for tests etc and the coach didn’t like it. He was told he would have plenty of playing time but that didn’t materialize. Make sure he is going to a school that supports his major. He’s most likely not playing ball as a pro so he needs a profession. Good Luck.
Where do you live that travel fall ball is of significant importance for pitchers? Sorry if obvious but the majority of committed D3 baseball players will be announcing by October with an expectation of November ED applications. In the northeast, many are committing now. Are you thinking a D1 will pop last minute or is it truly D3 at a school you prefer?
The baseball recruiting process can be frustrating. Do you have a club coach that can offer insights? It is my understanding that D3 spots are harder than ever becasue of the trickling down from a smaller draft and more transfers due to the ease of the portal.
Best of luck. On the bright side, everyone loves a lefty pitcher!
Though he would love a D1 offer for bragging rights if nothing else, it is much more about trying to find the right D3 school where he likes the baseball program and is a good fit with the school. Because we are looking at schools that are a plane flight away from us and from each other, it’s not easy to fit visits in.
It’s a great point about not prioritizing the travel ball - we are just so in the habit of being committed to games that we kinda forget bailing out here and there is an option.
Most of his preread results and offers have been over phone or text so there hasn’t been an opportunity for us as parents to join and ask questions. I think we will have our kid send an email including us and telling the coach that we had a couple follow up questions on the financials (and nailing down that there is an offer for a roster spot - some coaches have been very effusive but not said those magic words).
Thanks for all the advice - it is super helpful!
1)Many schools will do a financial aid pre-read for you. Worth it to ask, if the budget is not unlimited/full pay.
2)Your S does need to pin the coaches down on the language and what they are offering. Ok for you to be on that zoom (ask for a zoom with all of you). Basically, you want to have the coach’s full support thru the admission process. Some coaches might call that a slot. Some a spot, or tip. Terminology varies from school to school. Ask the coach what proportion of recruits with positive pre-reads and full support have historically been admitted.
3)Make sure to understand for how long the offer is open. It can be a tricky conversation with the coaches who aren’t at the top choice program.
My D never had an offer from a coach which didn’t include the coach offering to get on the phone with us to answer questions. A couple of them requested calls with us to answer questions and sell the school/program.