So, You're Making a Highlight Tape
WHAT TO DO
- Put all of the best plays towards the beginning - Most college coaches will probably watch the first minute and a half to two minutes then move on if they’re not impressed. Cram your most impressive plays into the opening segments. Start with a bang, don’t finish with some sort of grand finale. Try to keep your total highlight tape to about 3-4 minutes. No more.
- Quality over quantity - You are trying to have a tape that highlights your best plays, not a recap of every play from the spring/summer.
- Show a broad range of your game.
- Attackmen - It shouldn’t just be goal scoring – show different kinds of dodges, riding, moving off-ball, EMO, feeding and ground ball play.
- Midfielders - Same as attackmen but make sure to throw in some transition and plenty of D.
- Defensemen – Show more than just takeaway checks and carrying past midfield. Coaches want to see the full scope – include off-ball play, clearing and hustle plays.
- Goalies - Show your all-around game, not exclusively shot-stopping.
- In general, try to show your athleticism. Anyone that is going to play college lacrosse can catch and finish unguarded from 5yds out
- Include contact info and grades/scores – Your highlight video should open and close with a screen or two that shows your name and contact info as well as the name and contact info of your club and high school coach. You should also list your height, weight and GPA. Coaches don’t want to recruit players that don’t have the grades for their school. Save the coach and yourself a lot of time and energy by being upfront with your grades.
- These slides should hold for enough time to be read, not to be paused and rewound.
- Make sure the contact info is correct – Confirm names, emails and phone numbers with your coaches before listing it on the tape. Spelling a coach’s name wrong or giving the incorrect contact information will get you crossed off a college coach's list very quickly.
- Make accessible on cell phones – Like everyone else, coaches are consuming a lot of content on their phone. Make it easy for them.
WHAT NOT TO DO
- Don’t have bad language in any songs. Coaches will not watch a video with inappropriate music and it reflects poorly on you. Everything in recruiting is about making a strong impression with a coach. Leave out curse words, racial slurs, homophobic language and sexually suggestive lyrics.
- Limit post goal celebrations – Coaches love to see team players but they don’t need to see every post goal celebration for 10-15 seconds. Move on to the next play.
- Don’t load up on clips against poor competition – Your highlight tape should show you against like size and ability. Scoring 10 goals against someone who doesn’t know how to hold a stick is not impressive.
- Avoid sending excessive amounts of e-mails – Send your highlight tape and schedule to a coaching staff before each season. Send schedules before events or a note that you are attending their event. They do not need you to send updates after every single event with your stats.
- Leave out crazy special effects and noises – Keep it simple. Coaches get hundreds of these and have already seen all the special effects. They aren’t impressed. They just want to see good lacrosse players in the most efficient way possible.
- Do not ask for detailed feedback - Ask your club or high school coach, a teammate or parent for feedback. Don’t ask a college coach for feedback on your highlight tape. His feedback is either recruiting you or not recruiting you.
- Use YouTube – This is the easiest way for a coach to watch your tape. Post a high-quality video on YouTube and share the link.
- Pin to your twitter, post on your SportsRecruits profile and paste on your Instagram
Finally, remember that coaches can only communicate with Juniors and Seniors in High School. They cannot communicate with a club or high school coach about freshman and sophomores. Do not ask your coach about reaching out to a college coach since the two are not permitted to speak about a player prior to September 1st of his Junior year.