Athletes virtually communicate with recruiters due to NCAA scouting restrictions

Breier practiced on new turf field during COVID to send videos to college recruiters.

Breier practiced on new turf field during COVID to send videos to college recruiters.

Anabel Magers

As the world of contact sports deciphers how to adapt to COVID guidelines, colleges looking for recruits have had to rely on direct communication from coaches and players to be able to make offers to prospective athletes.

Because the National College Athletic Association has banned all in-person recruiting until at least the end of 2020, there is more of a responsibility on coaches and players to make sure their ability is accurately understood by scouts.

“Most [college recruiters] won’t make an offer until they see you in person,” Brittany Vencill, Manual field hockey coach said. This makes it difficult for classes of 2023-2022 to show off their skill. 

Even though there is much more of a limitation because assistant coaches of recruiting colleges cannot see the players in action, Manual athletes are having success getting offers. 

Dylan Breier (11, HSU) is part of the field hockey team. Last fall/winter season, recruiters had seen her play through club games. Though, upperclassmen players have been concerned that their potential isn’t as known to recruiters as best it would be if in-person scouting was allowed.

Between the two most recent seasons, since in-person recruiting was prohibited, Breier and Vencill have been communicating with college coaches directly, specifically from the University of Pennsylvania, through video sharing sites and zoom meetings.

“I was nervous because I had planned on attending a bunch of camps at the campuses throughout the spring and summer, which were all canceled,” Brier said. “But once I started talking to the coaches and heard what their plan was, I felt better about being able to send in videos and film.”

“I think we adapted very well and made it work, whether it was filming at my house when all the turf fields weren’t allowed to be used or me filming by myself,” Breier said.

Despite the hindrance that COVID-19 has caused on the would of high school athletics, success is not far-fetched. Breier received an offer from UPenn during the pandemic because of all of the work that she did with her coach to depict her potential as a college athlete.