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  • Writer's pictureWayne Mazzoni

Simple Camp Advice From A Camp Coach

In the field of athletic recruiting, it is harder to find a more hot-buttontopic than that of the role of camps. Here are some key points from a college coach’s view on baseball camps:

Above all else, get an evaluation

One of the biggest benefits you can get by going to a camp in any sport is for the athlete, or the parent, to get a sense of how talented you are as it compares to the other players at camp.

So many athletes judge themselves only against a smaller recruiting pool and thus a camp provides an opportunity to be with a larger number of college bound players to see where you stand. If you go to the Penn State volleyball camp, for example, and you believe you are the worst of all 400 players, guess what? Unless you do a lot of work, you won’t have any college to play at. Conversely, if you are in the top of that group, you are not only a college-level player, but maybe even a Division 1 scholarship player.

In addition, many of the camps allow the college coaches to evaluate you and give you a written report on all facets of your game.

Camp selection is critical

One question I am always asked is how do you determine which camp to choose. Well, I can tell you one way not to pick it and that is by Googling it. Just because a camp comes up high on the list of searches does not mean it is a good camp or the right camp for you.

Ideally you start by determining which colleges make a good fit for you, then finding out which of those schools run camps or which camps those coaches attend.

Sometimes a simple call or email to a college coach can give you the best word of mouth on which camps to attend.

Notify coaches before you go

Camps are a great way for college coaches to find and evaluate players, but many of them also are hard to manage. They are big, spread out, lots of kids, long days. It will help to separate yourself from the pile of kids by sending a note to the coach before camp that you are interested in attending.

At the camp

Some camps don’t provide interaction with coaches while others do. In an ideal world, you do choose a camp where you get to meet and work with the coaches. That personal connection can go a long way in recruiting. It’s important to dress properly (on and off the field) and to have a good attitude. That means no complaining, always hustling, and having good body language. Coaches get to pick their players, and they want upbeat kids who are fun to be around. They also want leaders.

Camps are great, but not everything

Camps come in all shapes and sizes from one-day events to weeklong sleepovers. However, make sure not to put all your recruiting eggs in the camp basket. If you don’t show well, get sick, your team makes the playoffs and you have to back out, or you don’t play well at camp, have an injury, or don’t wind up being seen by the right coaches, you still need to do other marketing things to get recruited.



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