Recruiting 101, How to Get Started

Recruiting 101, everything you need to know about the recruiting basic's and how to get started.

Key Points

  • Recruiting basics (101) 
  • How to get started
  • Key information for athletes/parents


At Diversion Sports, we are bringing everyone free educational information on recruiting. Specifically on high school football recruiting. Everything from the basic’s to higher levels. We don’t claim to be experts and never hope to be. We are continuous students of the game with a mission to help prospective student-athletes on their journey. 

At some point in time in every high school athlete’s career, a decision comes along that must be thought out with their families whether or not they would like to play their sport at the next level in college. Then the second question is who are my top schools for whatever reasons whether that be academic, tradition, reputation, etc. The list can go on and on about the different reasons a PSA (prospective student-athlete) would choose a liking over one school over another. The third question probably is, how do we get started? 

Many parents and athletes are ignorant of the basic information, processes, and other information about how to get started in the world of recruiting because it can all seem so confusing. We are here to help. 

Whats the best way to get started?

We will now show you the best ways to get started and the basics of Recruiting 101. The basics is what we have compiled from professionals in the industry alongside the information which the NCAA provides on recruiting. 

Recruiting 101

  • Know the definition of key terms (i.e contact period, dead period, etc.) 
  • Know the Recruiting Calander 
  • How can you start the process
  • How you can get recruited 

Key terms

  • Overview 

    • Dead period
    • Quiet period 
    • Contact period 
    • Evaluation period 
    • Official visit 
    • Unofficial visit


  • Dead period  / Time Frame: June 27th – July 24th  

Permissible – 

However, college coaches may call or write to athletes & families during this time.  

Impermissible – 

College coaches may not have any face-to-face contact with athletes or family or off the campus at any time. 

  • Quiet period / Time Frame:  June 1st – July 31st 

Permissible – 

a)athlete & family may visit college campuses during this time b) a coach may call or write you and your family during this time. 


a)During this time a college coach may not have any in-person contact with you or your family member off the college campus.  b) a coach may not watch you play or visit your high schools 

  • Contact period / Time Frame:  November 28th, – Jan 29th 

Permissible  – 

college coaches may have face-to-face contact with you or your family members, watch you compete, or visit your high school & call or write you and your family members. 

  • Evaluation period / Time Frame: April 15th – May 31st 

Permissible –  

a college coach may watch you competent, visit your high school, and call or write you and your family members. 

Impermissible  – 

a college coach may not have face-to-face contact with you or your family members off the college’s campus during this period. 

  • Official visit / Time Frame: Anytime EXCEPT – (June 27th – July 24th) 


  1. Student-athlete must register for  a certification account through the NCAA eligibility center online b) you must provide a copy of your transcript to the coaches

c)The college can provide the following: 

-Pay for transportation & travel ( 2 family members only) 

-3 meals per day & entertainments cost for up to 4 family members

-5 tickets to a division I home sports event 



No official visit can be made during the recruiting dead period or during a recruiting shutdown. 

  • Unofficial visit / Time Frame: Anytime EXCEPT – (June 27th – July 24th) 


  1. Any visit you make to a college campus is paid for by student-athletes family members. b)you may talk to coaches c)The only thing student-athletes may receive is 

-3 tickets to a DI home game

-1 meal 


Student-athletes may not visit or talk with coaches during the dead period (dates listed above). 

For the exact terms please visit the NCAA website on key terms. 

Recruiting Calander

Now that we have discussed the key terms in recruiting. Next up is knowing the recruiting calendar and how it all works. The NCAA recently released a new calendar this year and we are here to provide a general overview of that information. 

Being familiar with the dates of the recruiting calendar and when coaches can and cannot talk to you is crucial to your success. Why you might ask? Well, this ability allows you to know when exactly you and coaches can talk when you can take visits to campuses, and much more.

Every recruit is at a different stage in the process and it’s better to get started as soon as you can as an underclassman. Freshmen, Sophomores, typically have to wait before having direct contact with coaches, however, juniors and seniors have different limitations and start dates and we will cover that with you next. 

High School Stages of recruiting

High School 



  • Phone calls- 
    • September 1st ( 1 call per week ) 
    • November 28th – January 29th ( contact period) coaches can contact an unlimited amount of time.
    • July 1st prior to senior year,( limited contact periods)
  • Official Visits –  
  • Sept 1st of senior yr
  • August recruits can attend colleges home games and be there up to 48 hrs before the game kicks off and only 48 hrs after the game is preceded (Max of 5 during HS enrollment ) 



  • Recruiting material – 
    • September 1st,  all forms of private communication are allowed, coaches are allowed to contact. 
  • Phone calls-  
    • January 16th, the Sunday after the American Football Association Convention calls may be made during the academic school year. (1 call per week) 
    • No calls in February (quiet period) 
    • March phone calls resume – ( 1 call per week ) 
    • April & May unlimited phone calls
    • June & July  (1 call per week) 
  • Official visits – (Max of 5 per athlete’s HS career) 
  • April 1st – last Sunday in June ( NOTE: may not be for an athlete to attend colleges camp) 



  • Recruiting material – what can athletes receive ?

 1) questionnaires


2) camp info

3) nonathletic institutional publications 

4) education material from NCAA 


  • Phone calls –  Institute staff may receive phone calls at anytime




  • Recruiting material – what can athletes receive? 

1) questionnaires 

2) camp info 

3) nonathletic institutional publications 

4) education material from NCAA 


  • Phone calls –  Institute staff may receive phone calls at anytime

Where to Start

First prospective student-athletes should create an eligibility checklist and enter their information through the NCAA to get certification and their ID numbers. This first simple step is crucial in the process and lets coaches know that you are serious about playing at the next level. Want to get started with your account? Head on over to the NCAA website and get started.  

How you can get recruited ?

If you are new to the process. Then this is how you can get started by focusing on theses key areas:

  • Focus on academic success in the class room first. Without good grades your chances of getting recruited to play Division I football are slim to none.
  • Be persestant in self-improvement, playing well, and promoting yourself. 
  • Have varsity film. JV, middle school won’t help much.
  • Varsity film is not merely enough. You must dominate your opponent every play.
  • Put your best film on your highlights. This sparks interest, then coaches will will evaluate further. 
  • Your film must include you being able to play your position with skills, athletic ability, and attributes. 

These are just some of the basics of recruiting and we will continue to provide information on how you can help yourself achieve your dreams, help navigate the unknown for parents and athletes, plus also inspire, and educate. Stay tuned as we build on our serious of recruiting 101. 


  • Oklahoma Sooners university Director of Recruiting, coach JR Sandlin, Twitter

Diversion Sports Media is in no way affiliated with the NCAA or anyone else mentioned in this article. NOTE: this article has been edited since posted.

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