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With the signing period starting in just one day (on November 13th), there will likely be a wave of commitments in the coming weeks. If you are one of the recruits making a commitment or that will be you at some point, this article is for you. In this article, we will address the way to handle your commitment the right way. The baseball world is small and the last thing you want to do during what is supposed to be a happy time is burn any bridges or have a bunch of college coaches angry with you. To stay in the good graces of everyone you have interacted with during your commitment, follow these steps.
- Make sure you are 100% comfortable with your decision and ready to commit. We discuss why it’s so important here. Also, make sure you know exactly what the expectations are moving forward (academic, admissions, baseball performance, etc.).
- Call the coaches at the school you are committing to (or commit in person) and tell them that you are ready to commit.
- Before celebrating or putting anything on social media, call every other coach who was recruiting you and tell them that you have decided to commit elsewhere. Thank them for the opportunity and wish them luck. These are difficult conversations to have and some coaches may be frustrated or even angry. That’s their problem, not yours. Regardless of how they respond, it is your responsibility to show your character by being respectful and considerate of their interest and the effort they put into recruiting you. If they are upset, tell them that you are sorry they feel that way and wish them luck. Staying positive and expressing thanks can only help you moving forward. There are many cases where commitments fall through or coaches change schools. If these unfortunate circumstances happen to you, you want to be able to pick up the phone and feel comfortable calling any of the coaches you had previously been in contact with. We can’t overstate how important it is to contact coaches by phone (NOT text) before they have the opportunity to hear from someone else (social media, another person, etc.).
- After you have contacted all the coaches from the schools where you will not be attending, feel free to post your commitment on social media and celebrate your accomplishment with family and friends. Keep it simple and positive. If things turned sour with other schools at any point in time, let it go and focus on your accomplishment. While it’s common for recruits to make long posts, realize that many college coaches prefer simplicity and frown on long, self-glorifying posts. Saying things like “I am humbled…” or “Thankful…” followed by statements that contradict what it means to be thankful or humble will not build you any good will with anyone.
- Understand that your commitment means the work is just starting. Rather than rest on your accomplishment, this milestone should serve as a reminder that you need to work harder than ever before to compete for a job when you set foot on campus. In college baseball, nothing is given and everything is earned. Showing up in shape and ready to go is incredibly important. Use Step 10 of Recruiting 101 to help you better understand your post-commitment responsibilities.
Following the 5 simple steps above will ensure that you handle your commitment the right way and respect the process and people involved in it. Congratulations and good luck!