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Thoughts on Early “Offers”


The “offers” are starting to fly more often than ever. I  have been trying to answer my own question. Just how important is an early “offer?” Why is there such a high value of an early “offer?”

Before I go any farther, I realize that I am not a 16-17 year high school football player, and I can say anything. I realize that I am not a parent of a high school football player waiting for an offer, and I can say anything. I get that. But, being a kid’s guy, I think that I can say anything, positive or negative as long as the comment is positive construction.

When I ask a parent or his high school coach, how “Josh is doing?”, the answer often goes like this. ” Doing well, but he does not have any offers, yet.” Some prospects are just going into their junior year. Most are going to be seniors. “No offers yet.” For me, maybe the prospect is really close, but has not shown enough. But they might not have performed well enough for an early “offer.”

First – getting at least one “offer,” seems to be getting easier rather than harder every year. College coaches cannot afford to make mistakes, but the recruiting business is so competitive. An Ohio State, a Michigan, or a Notre Dame can make a mistake. With such large numbers, they can bury or run off a scholarship player who they have made a mistake on. But a mid major school cannot. So much depth at a Power Five school, they can hide a recruit. Or as some do, find a way to “get out of the offer.” A la – grey shirting.

A few years ago, a high profiled head coach offered a freshman in camp. When questioned about the move from one of his assistants, his comment,” That’s four years away. A lot can happen before then.” And a lot happened after that . I wondered at the time, just how the head coach would “get out of” that offer. But the program did. The QB went to a different school.

Second – Most Ohio high school seniors need to play well their first three games of their senior year to seal the chance for an “offer.” If a prospect leaves a camp, after meeting with the college coaches, and the coaches say, “Play hard early and we will make the final decision.” My suggestion is to work hard and focus on football, not getting an offer. You are probably not going to get an offer

Third – I hear this a lot. “Joey does not have an “offer,” but yet Jack Smith from Bowsherville HS has 5 and we destroyed them last year. My son is a lot better than Smith. Not fair. ” Most of the time, a parent is speaking on emotion, rather reality.

Fourth – At one camp I was talking with a dad and he told that his son had 7 offers, mostly Mid American schools. I thought was really good, but then I was told that he was going to Maryland, Duke, Penn State to throw in front of them. Be careful, I would grab the best offer from the school that I really felt comfortable with and go with it. Mid-major and Mid American schools cannot wait long or hold an offer long anymore. The QB ended eventually signed with an average MAC program.

Five – Among the Big Ten, MAC, and schools across the country, some schools offer, just because another school has offered a prospect. Alabama will offer a prospect, just to put pressure on Big Ten schools. Of course that goes on at all levels. If a MAC school offers, almost every other MAC school will offer. Thinking being – Alumni pressure.

Is an “offer” important to an underclassman. Probably, but if I were a parent of a 2020 player, I would wait, regardless of who offers him. Regardless! Some schools are not ready to offer and underclassman, but are afraid to wait. If I am 2018 recruit, why not enjoy the process. If a college will not wait, then a recruit should no go there anyway.

Six- I am always amused when a school throws out an “offer,” and the prospect accepts it immediately. Sometimes an assistant will come back with – “We have to meet as a staff to come to a final decision. We will let you know the end of next week.” Sometimes that call never comes.

Believe it or not, some head football coaches at major universities, put value in the 5Star system and throw an offer to a prospect, simply because he has a 4or 5 Star rating. Those coaches love the “center stage,” and will do almost anything to be in the news. Plus a high star rating attracts other 4 and 5 stars.(Sometimes)

Heard this comment about a young man coming out of a camp. “He is getting better and just on the edge of getting an “offer.” The 2018 recruit was not ready for an offer. Not yet. A player in Cleveland has seven offers and has not played in a varsity game. Potential and camp performance got him some offers.

The media, especially recruiting site media love early offers. Gives them something to write about. Also, always gives them something to fall back on for more content. That is how sites like 24/7, Scout, and Rivals make their living.

An “offer” is important, but do not let not getting one after spring evaluations or coming out of a camp,”mess with your mind.” Keep focused on getting better and helping your team get better. The football season, where you actually play football will determine many FINAL offers.

Talking about “offers” often sounds negative. The positive is that a high school player is good enough to be considered for an “offer.” Early “offers” to underclassman can, or will, cause more problems than necessary.

Worry about what you can control.







  1. Tony

    June 20, 2016 at 9:36 am

    Good information.


  2. tammy lynn timmons

    June 24, 2016 at 1:51 pm

    OK and once a player commits what combines should he attend my son signed with Siena heights he didn’t get the exposure that a lot of other players get early on. So now he will be a freshman playing football for Siena heights. Now weather or not anyone belives that he’s not DI or DII material . He had better stats than Most players from the Toledo area there are several players who signed to play DI that were from central catholic, Bowsher Springfield and several other schools, who were definitely not anywhere near his caliber. He had Early offers from several DIII colleges but never got one DI or DII offer. So for anything in the future what would you suggest?


    • John McCallister

      June 25, 2016 at 2:53 pm

      The only thing that I can say that a prospect has to getting HUDL video ready as early as he can. Needs to be varsity time. Needs to get into some camps after his sophomore year. Sometimes earlier. He needs to get his high school coach sending his name out there. Getting a true FBS offer is difficult. If you are from a smaller school program it is harder. More and more, if a prospect does meet the physical measurements, it is tough. Finally, more and more, a prospect better be able to “wow” a college coach with something.


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