How To Tell a Coach “No, Thanks” in the College Recruiting Process

Contributor Rick Paine is an expert on the college recruiting process. He is also the Director of Swimming at American College Connection (ACC). AAC is a SwimSwam Partner. 

At American College Connection we really try to educate our swimmers on how to communicate with college coaches. We want them to feel honored that any college coach would want them to swim for their team. Every college coach deserves respect.

We teach the kids to do it with “class” and to not burn any bridges.

The letter below was written by one of our juniors as he explains to a college coach that he is not interested in his program. The college coach was so impressed that he forwarded the letter to me.

This is the way it’s done. See the coach’s response below.

Dear Coach G:

I apologize for the delay in my response to you.  I very much appreciate your interest in me as I begin my college search.  I am currently finishing my junior year and gearing up for the summer swim season. Earlier this year, my teammates and I were fortunate enough to finish third place in the State Championship Meet.

As I mentioned, I am just beginning my college search and I hope to visit many colleges before making my decision.  My goal is to select a college and a swimming program that will best fit my goals.  At this early time, I do not want commit to a particular college without doing my due diligence.  The enrollment and fine swimming program at _____ College is smaller than I am looking for; however, my circumstances may change and I will re-contact you if they do.  Thank you again for your consideration of me.


John Smith


Hi John

Thank you for letting me know.

I wish you the best in your college search!

Know you are always welcome at EC.

Coach G

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