Contributor Rick Paine is an expert on the college recruiting process. He is also the Director of Swimming at American College Connection (ACC).
ACC is a SwimSwam Partner.
“American College Connection has proven to be the best single source that we rely on for information about prospective student-athletes,” recently retired coach at the University of Alabama Dennis Pursley said. “We value their recommendations and have a high level of trust in the information they provide for us.”
If a five-time Olympic coach and American Swimming Coaches Hall of Famer trusts American College Connection, why wouldn’t you?
To help you out during the recruiting process, ACC has put together a list of questions that they suggest swimmers consider asking college coaches.
- What is the weekly practice schedule?
- Men/Women together or separate
- Dry land/Wetland/Weights
- Practice attendance/missed practice policy
- What are the shave & taper or target meets
- What opportunities do you have in the off-season & summer to practice?
- What events will you be training for to best help the team?
- Who will be your primary coach?
- Dual Meets/In Season Meets
- How many? Does it change week to week or set squad?
- When do you announce line-ups and travel squad?
- How many travel? Score?
- What percentage of your swimmers swim all 4 years and graduate in 4 years?
- What percentage improve times year-to-year and over 4 years?
- How many retire early and why?
- What percentage go best times at championship meet in given year?
- What type of race/practice analysis do you have?
- Video tape, underwater camera, etc.
- What gear are you given or have use of or have to purchase?
- Practice suits/cap
- End of year suit/cap
- Do you have Tryouts or can all recruited athletes swim?
- If so, what criteria do you have for team selection in the fall?
- Are team members involved in any other activities besides swimming?
- What % of the women/men join sororities/fraternities
- Variety of Greek organizations or just one or two?
- Is there a team policy about Greek life
- Are there conflicts with meets & Greek activities (ie.not wanting to go to meet due to formal)
- Does this (Greek life) cause a team division?
- What type of campus clubs do swimmers join?
- Team sponsored Community Service?
- Do swimmers do outside community service? How do they find it?
- Campus Government
- Are you “invited” or “required” to go on the training trips?
- Who pays for trip (all, some, none?)
- Required fundraising activities or write a check option
- How do you house your team on campus?
- Do you arrange roommates?
- Specific dorm?
- Swimmers on one hall or dorm?
- Break Travel
- When are you allowed to go home for holidays? When do you have to be back? Any consideration for cross-country travel?
- Can you go home for October/Fall break?
- What kind of help is available if I get injured? And policy?
- Health services (regular or fast track?)
- Ice near pool?
- Training room?
- Sports Psychologist
- How many swimmers retire due to injuries? Pre-existing or in program?
- How developed is your Alumni Networking within swim team?
- What percent of swimmers (not gen. pop) are accepted to graduate/professional school?
- How many swimmers are taking prep classes or entrance tests (LSAT, MCAT, GMAT) in a given year? How do you support those kids?
- Are you fully funded?
- Men: Is there any chance the program will be cut due to Title IX?
- What types of resources are available for academic help & advising?
- Required study halls/tutors/advisors/priority in registering for classes
- Is study abroad summer or semester available?
- Help available to find place where you can practice abroad?
- How much class is missed for meets, esp. conference meets & how do swimmers make up classes?
- Can you request a meet off due to academics?
- Tell me about previous swimmers who have majored in XXXXX.
- What issues have you dealt with in the past/ what are most common issues?
- What is your biggest challenge in Recruiting?
- What do you look for in recruits?
- What is the strength of your program/school? Weakness?
- What are your goals for your program?
- What are you doing to achieve this?
- How long will it take?
- How far have you come?
- How many recruits will you be bringing in this year or each year?
- (list here if asked)
SPECIFIC TO SCHOOL