NIL-ionaire : Part 2

Complete Recruiting + NIL Timeline

This is part 2 of my ongoing “NIL-ionaire” series. If you haven’t read Part 1, please do so before continuing any further. I’m on Twitter and answer all of my DM’s if you have any questions: @AndrewPetcash

I’m trying to organize this series in the most logical progression as possible.

For example, it’s important to know how to properly construct a highlight tape before you start contacting coaches with the tape attached.

It’s important to know how to set up and leverage your social media, before you start reaching out to brands about NIL deals.

However, both recruiting and NIL isn’t 100% linear. There will be times when you need to go back and re-read a prior section of the series to connect the dots.

Let’s get in to it!


Recruiting Timeline

The college recruiting process will happen at different times for everyone.

Some kids will get offers in 9th grade, where as others won’t sign until their senior year.

However, there is a uniform schedule that all athletes need to follow.

I call these the “set-in-stone” aspects of recruiting.

Before High School

High school athletes are becoming millionaires thanks to NIL (name, image, and likeness).

Parents already go to extremes, it’s only going to increase and start at younger ages.

So what do you need to do before high school?

First and foremost, you need to focus on building your overall athleticism. I think all kids should play multiple sports up through middle school.

You can begin some light weight lifting:

  • dumbbells

  • plyometrics

  • resistance bands

  • speed training

Keep an emphasis on good form.

The next thing is paying attention to the path of others.

Do you have an older brother, family friend, or cousin?

Watch their recruiting journey. Learn from it. Go to their games and understand what different talent looks like.

And last but not least, start to take academics more seriously.

Build the habit of getting good grades because without it your athletic talent is diminished.


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9th Grade

Freshman year is a different beast because a lot of new variables are thrown at you.

It’s important to set up a solid foundation that will lead to success later on.

Keep in mind, a few kids will earn offers in 9th grade. They’re the outliers and elite of the elite. Focus on getting yourself to where you want to be.

To start out, you need to meet with your guidance counselor before school starts to set up a plan. They’ll be familiar with eligibility requirements for student-athletes.

Some other important steps during freshman year:

  • create an NCAA eligibility account

  • set up and optimize your social media/recruiting accounts

  • target list of schools

I’ll be digging deep into all of these in upcoming parts of the series. Right now we’re just laying the groundwork.

Most 9th graders will play 9th grade sports.

If you have the chance to play JV or varsity you’ll be ahead of the average 9th grader.

A lot of this is determinant on how good the talent is ahead of you. Don’t look too much into what level you’re playing at as a 9th grader.

10th Grade

Things start to pick up as a sophomore.

You should see a huge improvement in your game from 9th to 10th grade.

This is a major stepping stone as you will either fall behind the competition or get ahead of them.

Some tasks you need to take care of:

  • review transcript & NCAA eligibility with guidance counselor

  • take the PSAT in the fall (practice SAT)

  • if you’re ready - take the actual ACT or SAT in the spring

  • look at camps to attend in the summer

The majority of college coaches, will begin to start recruiting athletes in the summer after sophomore year.

11th Grade

This is the most important year without a doubt. Recruiting will come at you all at once.

You need to be at your best athletically, academically, and socially.

Here are a bunch of things that will take place:

  • NCAA eligibility certification tasks

  • Take and or re-take ACT/SAT

  • Send transcripts to schools and the eligibility center

  • Refine your target lists of schools

  • Aggressively reach out to coaches

  • Go on visits and attend exposure events

  • Plan out summer

Junior year is going to be fun, but you have to stay organized.

My recruitment took off in 11th grade as I earned over 10 offers.

Everyone’s journey is unique, but if you’re not a major contributor on your varsity team by junior year it’s going to be a lot harder to earn offers.

12th Grade

Senior year comes at you fast. Before you know it, you’re either headed to college as an athlete or as a NARP (non-athletic regular person).

Your last year is meant for committing to a school, enjoying the end of HS, and taking the next steps in your development.

Here are some of the main tasks:

  • applying to colleges

  • completing FAFSA

  • applying for scholarships

  • sign NLI

  • request final amateurism certification

For me, it was a disaster.

I decommitted from a school, lost all my other offers, and went through graduation without knowing where I was going to play college ball.

10 days before heading to prep school, Division 1 Boston University moved my scholarship offer up from the Class of 2018 to the Class of 2017.

I accepted and never looked back.

My goal is to make sure your process is much smoother and less stressful than mine.

Prep School/JUCO

For some student-athletes, a post-grad year at prep school or JUCO for two years is a logical progression.

Your recruiting process will just repeat what it was like as a junior and senior.

Nothing changes you are just given a second chance to get the opportunity you are looking for at a higher level of college sports.

Last Chance U.

NIL Athlete

As the legislation moves downstream, NIL will start to play a factor at the high school level.

It’s important and something to prepare for but you need to remember…recruiting comes before NIL.

Focus on your recruiting and the strategies I’ll lay out throughout this series to be in the best possible position.

Both your recruiting and NIL opportunities will move in the right direction synergistically.

Other Key Points:

The top athletes go to Division 1 schools. They develop faster and their potential is realized much earlier.

Division 2 is next in line.

From there - NAIA, D2, and JUCO schools swoop in and take the best remaining players off the board.

THE BEST IS YET TO COME FOR YOU!

Stay Blessed.


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Next Article: NIL-ionaire : Part 3 - Academic Eligibility Guide

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