June 16, 2021
Over the last handful of years, more and more recruiting has been driven by video and analytics. The tools behind this change – like video, Blast Motion, Rapsodo and others – are incredibly valuable and useful for player development and college coaches are also now turning to them to help evaluate prospective student-athletes to aid in their recruiting efforts, as well.
Video continues to be the most accessible and widely used of these, so we wanted to dive in on video in this part of the pre-camp curriculum.
While video certainly isn’t new in recruiting, it has now become much more prevalent, given the ease of capturing quality footage with a smartphone, and with easy distribution through tools like YouTube and SportsRecruits to put your film in coaches’ hands. For years coaches have used video to get a first look at a large number of student-athletes – and that hasn’t changed. Having video to send to coaches is a great way to introduce yourself to coaches, and also to keep them updated on your progress and development as you build a recruiting relationship.
The other role that video plays in recruiting is in putting the eyes of the entire coaching staff on you. For the vast majority of college coaching staffs, recruiting is a collaborative effort, and getting cross-checking and staff buy-in on recruits can be labor and time-intensive. Having good video footage can help make this easier though – which is the purpose of the video that we collect at Honor Roll on every student-athlete.
Through our partnership with NextPro, all coaches will receive a database with in-game footage (at bats and innings pitched) cut and tagged to each player at camp, giving them a warehouse of footage to go back to when they’re back in the softball office after camp. This means that the coach who attended camp – watching live, taking notes, connecting with players – has the resources to go back to the other members of the coaching staff to not only talk about their notes, but can pull up the video of you at camp to show how you play in games. And because coaches see every player at camp, they can evaluate your game film by comparing your performance with other players they are recruiting. If a coach had a pitcher highly-ranked and watches film of you taking her deep, that film will be that much more valuable to them than video of a practice session or than the game film that parents are able to capture during a tournament, where coaches watching the film might not know the level of competition. With the at-camp footage, coaches not only have the chance to see how you perform, but how you stack up to the competition and to their other recruits.
This access to verified game footage is crucial. While collecting some of the “showcase-style” video can be very accessible with a parent or teammate and a smartphone, in-game footage is different. If a coach is watching video that a parent was able to capture at a tournament, not only is it probably not the ideal angle, the coach watching also doesn’t have any information on the other team or level of competition. With the Honor Roll game film, coaches will have notes and data not only on you, but on who you’re matching up against in the circle or in the batter’s box, giving them the ability to better assess where you may fall in their recruiting.
This Honor Roll game film will be sent to all coaches regardless of whether players decide to purchase their film – but NextPro also provides different packages for players to purchase their video to take with them after camp. This includes access to all your footage, as well as custom-built highlight reels picked by you. This option gives you the opportunity to acquire personalized film to use throughout your recruiting.
If you’d like to see a sample of what this game film looks like, click here.
We’ve also written about the benefits of at-camp footage in previous blog posts – click here to read more.