July 1st marked the initial contact period for the class of 2016 athletes to be recruited. We reached out to some of our top 2015 standouts to get their take on the process and offer advice. See what the 2A state champion in both the 110m and 300m hurdles, former Hallandale standout, and Baylor Signee had to say!
When did coaches first start reaching out to you and how did you manage that?
I would be what you call a late bloomer into the recruiting process so this is for anyone who isn't getting phone calls or visits set up right now. I ran all my fastest times my senior year. I opened up with one of the top 300 hurdle times in the nation and was in the top three for the 110's, but Florida Is pretty much one of the 1st states to start outdoor. Recruiting really kicked off after Texas Relays when I ran some wonderful times.
Did you have an official visit? How did it work? What was it like?
I only took three of my five visits which I don't regret at all because my third visit was Baylor and I personally felt that I was already home and that no other school could have gave me or given me the same opportunity that they did. I can say I had some pretty sweet offers from TCU,South Carolina,Tennessee, Ole Mis, etc., but during my visit it was nothing more then extraordinary. From seeing our new track and it's facilities, to the chance to be training the same time pros train such as Sanya Richards-Ross and Jeremy Wariner, would just be preparing for the future.
What did you look for in schools when you narrowed your options down?
I looked for a wonderful coaching staff. I personally took the time out to look at what athletes these coaches who were recruiting me coached and how they improved from high school to college. Also, on all my visits I asked myself could I see myself living there for four or more years and if I couldn't imagine that I knew the school wasn't for me.
What ultimately made you decide on your college?
Baylor was my home away from home. From the team to the coaches it was real family oriented. The fact that all of our coaches actually went to Baylor was really special because that's something really unique. Another thing was that our academic advisor is strictly for track and she travels with us, so those track meets where you have an essay or a test she's there to help or proctor the exam. Also, we have several full time athlete trainers and there only for track also no other sport. Those were a couple reasons why I chose Baylor, but mainly cause I felt they would help me accomplish the goals I have set for the college level on and off the track.
Looking back on your recruiting experience, do you have any tips for those athletes who will be recruited in the future?
Ask questions on anything you wish to know. Do not let anyone pressure you into going to a school where you're not comfortable, not even friends or family. Actually, ask yourself could you see your self living there for four years? Do you feel like that's home away from home? Keep an open mind and always have faith. Like I said I didn't start getting heavily recruited until my senior year during track season.
Is there anything you would like to add?
Have fun and enjoy your senior year and the experience because it only comes once. Also, hood luck on next track season.