How to Get Recruited
Contacting College Coaches
Texting College Coaches

Texting College Coaches

When texting college coaches, it's important to keep in mind proper etiquette as well as the contact dates that apply to your sport.

College coaches and prospective athletes can communicate in many different ways, including texting. Depending on your sport and the type of program you’re interested in, college coaches may not be able to text you until June 15th or September 1st, entering your Junior Year. Before then, it’s essential to understand what to text coaches (and what not to).

NCAA Rules Surrounding Texting

Similar to other forms of communication—like emailing, phone calls, and Zoom calls—college coaches must follow specific guidelines and rules when communicating with prospective student-athletes.

NCAA Division I Rules 

In most sports, Division I college coaches cannot text student-athletes until June 15th or September 1st of the student’s junior year. You can find the official NCAA DI contact date for your sport here. Remember it’s best to text DI coaches once you have established a relationship with them and your sport’s contact date has passed!

NCAA Division II Rules

NCAA DII coaches cannot text prospective student-athletes until June 15th, going into their junior year. Similar to DI programs, we encourage athletes to refrain from texting DII college coaches until they have established a relationship with that coach and June 15th has passed.

NCAA Division III Rules

At the NCAA Division III level, there are no set communication rules for college coaches and prospective student-athletes. This means that coaches can contact potential student-athletes anytime during the recruitment process via email, text messages, or phone calls. Your first form of communication with a college coach, however, should always be email.

NAIA and NJCAA Rules

There are no official rules limiting when student-athletes can connect with NAIA or NJCAA programs. Keep in mind, however, that email should always be your first form of communication with coaches. After that, just follow the coach's lead! If they prefer to text, you can text the coach. 

Best Practices for Texting College Coaches

As previously noted, there are no official restrictions on your communication with college coaches. However, it's essential to adhere to best practices whenever you're reaching out to them.

When Should I Text a College Coach?

Your first message to a college coach should be an introductory email. After your introductory email, if a college coach would prefer to communicate via text message, they will let you know.

Before sending a text message to a college coach, you should look up the coach's local time to ensure  you're contacting them within reasonable hours. Stick to texting college coaches between 9:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. If you receive a text message outside of this time frame, it's best to wait unless it requires an immediate response.

What Should I Say in the Text Message

If a college coach prefers texting over email, it's okay to send them a text whenever you have new information to share. You should also feel comfortable wishing them good luck before important games or congratulating them on a big win. Here's an example text message:

Hey Coach Smith. I wanted to reach out to congratulate you on your big win against (INSERT SCHOOL). Hopefully, you and the team can keep this momentum going into your next game against (INSERT SCHOOL). Best of luck for the rest of the season!

Proper Etiquette for Texting Coaches

  • Address the Coach—When sending your first text message, address the coach at the beginning of the message: Hi Coach (LAST NAME).
  • Keep Your Texts Brief—Like other forms of communication, keep your texts clear, concise, and to the point.
  • Check for Grammar—Always check your grammar and spelling before sending a text message. 
  • Avoid Abbreviations and Slang—While texting is a less formal way to communicate with college coaches, conversations must remain appropriate and professional.
  • Be Patient—College coaches are very busy, especially if they are in season. If you don't receive a text back right away, do not panic. Unless you have something new to share with the coach, refrain from sending multiple messages just to receive a response.

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