Prep Baseball Report

Recruiting Essentials: Contact rules; drafting professional emails to coaches

Within this week’s edition of Recruiting Essentials, we’ll break down emails as a form of communication, but we’ll first touch on some important factors to consider prior to a player’s outreach.

College coaches, and the recruiting coordinators within the staff, are very busy people. In my 15 years as a recruiting coordinator, I cannot tell you how many times I was asked a question like this after our season ended: “What will you do with all of your free time now?”

Parents and amateur baseball players both understand the time commitment the sport requires as much as anyone, and I am sure that friends are shocked by the demands it takes on your schedule as well. As players dip into the recruiting process, the player needs to factor in the demands a college coach may be coping with at the time of year the player intends to reach out.

For example, here’s a typical day in the life of a college recruiting coordinator:

  • 6:30 a.m.: Wake up

  • 7:00: Phone calls with HS Coaches (remember they have classes to teach)

  • 8:30: Emails, compliance logs, & catching up on the news around college baseball

  • 9:15: Head to the office

  • 9:45: Staff Meeting

  • 10:15: Recruiting (phone calls, texts, emails; other scheduling, database management)

  • 12:15 p.m.: Player Development (video review, practice planning, player meetings)

  • 2:00: At the facility for any early work with individual players

  • 3:00: Practice (allowed four hours per day, 20 hours per week)

  • 6:00: Practice review (video analysis, player meetings, gameplan adjustments)

  • 7:00: Additional recruiting (phone calls, texts, emails)

  • 9:00: Day winds down, but the coach’s phone is always on and nearby…

While this schedule may differ slightly for various coaching staffs and individual coaches’ preferences, you can see the packed schedule a recruiter is dealing with on a day-to-day basis. With the plan above, this coach is spending about seven hours on player development, per day, and close to six hours recruiting – and these numbers vary up and down based on the point on the calendar, of course.

Regardless, the point is that it’s important for a player to know, generally, how their initial line of communication fits into the day of the recruiting coordinator that they intend to communicate with. Players should try their best to choose points on the calendar or within the coach’s typical day where their outreach fits.


The NCAA rulebook is extremely thick, constantly changing, and often difficult to understand. College coaches are required to take an annual test to prove they have an understanding of the NCAA’s rules regarding recruiting and eligibility. The test is open-book, but from experience, it can be challenging nevertheless. Parents and players are not expected to know every rule in the book themselves, and it’s acceptable for parents and/or players to reach out to learn whether or not they are allowed to contact college coaches under the rulebook. The onus falls upon the college coach to know the rules in regards to communication with recruiting.


+ Prospects can email coaches at any time during their high school years.
+ A coach may not send any “recruiting material” prior to Sept. 1 of the player’s junior year.
+ A coach may provide the following at any time: camp or clinic information, questionnaires, non-athletic institutional publications (brochures, for example), and educational material published by the NCAA.


In the Prep Baseball Report commitment database, there are over 300 student-athletes in their freshman and sophomore years who have committed to a college. Considering the restrictions on communication prior to Sept. 1 of a player’s junior year, how does this happen?

First, many of these players are elite-level prospects who have been evaluated by, or have performed in front of, college coaches and recruiting coordinators. Their talent level was exposed early and college coaches are eager to stay ahead of their counterparts to gain an edge among their peers and rival programs. The way these college coaches primarily communicate with these players is through the player’s travel ball or high school coach. Typically, recruiters will set aside a specific time that they’re available to answer their phone, and they’ll share that timeframe with the player’s coach who can help bridge the gap from there. 

The rules restrict the pace at which this kind of communication can be done, but when there’s mutual interest, it does allow for the coach to set up a visit or even make an offer to the player.


One way for a prospect to get onto a college’s radar is to reach out directly to that college. Assess the time of year and day that you're reaching out, as outlined early on, to help maximize your chances at being read or seen. Draft emails as if they’re a part of your resume – be direct, straight to the point, and stand out from the pack when possible.


The first thing coaches see when an email comes across is the email address you chose. This is the very first impression you can make, and the address itself should reflect how you’d like yourself to be portrayed. I would suggest that every prospective student-athlete has his or her own email address. It sounds obvious, but it’s worth reiterating to avoid immature addresses designed to be humorous – even if they were created at a younger age – or addresses that refer to a college or university already (e.g. [email protected]).

A good example of an email address is one that includes your name, or a variation of it, and your graduation year. This gives a coach a lot of information instantaneously as the email hits their inbox and as they open it up on their phone or their computer. And if the coach is already familiar with the player’s name, recognizing the name within the address as they’re notified on the new email will only increase the likelihood that they open it.


After choosing a professional email address, the next part of the email the coach will see is the subject line. This is a quick way to capture a coach’s attention and to further entice them to open your email – give the coach a reason to look without misleading them. If the email contains video, you can incorporate that into the subject line. If you’re playing near the school’s campus soon, refer to that in the subject line.


Within the body of the email itself, continue to keep your writing short and to the point while maintaining a professional tone. Don’t forget to double-check your grammar and spelling, as you are ultimately striving to meet the academic standards of the school you’re contacting first and foremost. If this is an introductory email, it might be worth attaching a resume of sorts instead. This initial email provides the coach with the option with paths to learn more about the player within an attached resume or at a PBR player profile page, for example.

At the bottom of your email, there should be a signature line with your name, high school, grad year, email address, phone number, and a link to a social media profile like a Twitter handle, if you so choose. You can also include the summer or fall team you play for, if you would like. As coaches save documents, this signature is a quick way to ensure the contact info the coach adds to their player database is accurate.

Here's a screenshot image of an example of a succinct and informative player email directed to a recruiting coordinator:


Premium Content Area

This article is only available to PBRPlus Subscribers. If you wish to continue reading this article:

Login to the Subscriptions Website.
To purchase a NEW SUBSCRIPTION, please click here to go to our subscription products page.