The Dos and Don’ts that will get you recruited

If you’re a high school volleyball player who’s hoping to compete in college, think about these numbers:

  • 1,836: The total number of schools across all college athletic divisions that offer men’s or women’s, volleyball teams.
  • 2,078: The total number of college volleyball teams in the United States.
  • 544,360: The total number of male and female high school volleyball players in the United States.

As you can see, the relatively small number of college volleyball coaches is stunningly outnumbered by the number of high school players. That means volleyball coaches must rely on highlight videos to establish their recruiting lists. And, for a high school volleyball player, that means you need a recruiting highlight video that will get you noticed.

While it may sound simple, making a volleyball highlight video that will get you on a college coach’s radar takes some effort. So, to help you produce a video that can produce interest from college coaches, make sure to follow this list of Dos and Don’ts.

  • Do stack the first 15 to 25 seconds of your highlight video with your best plays. The goal is to capture a coach’s attention and pique their interest in your skills and abilities.
  • Do use footage shot from above and with a tripod-mounted camera.
  • Don’t use video that’s shaky or has lots of superfluous zooming. The video should put the spotlight on your highlights and keep any other distractions to a minimum.
  • Do use video that shows the entire floor and, to ensure you’re noticed, highlight yourself with an arrow, drops shadow, or circle.
  • Don’t let your video run longer than five minutes. Instead, aim for three to five minutes in length. Remember this is a highlight video, not a career retrospective.
  • Do include a slide with your contact information, position, height, jersey number, current team, and your coach’s contact numbers, both at the beginning and end of the video.

With the dos and don’ts covered, do customize your video based on the position you play.

For a libero, include multiple clips of passing and defense from all three positions, as well as clips that demonstrate your ability to pass the ball, regardless of how much of the court you use. Show back row attacks if applicable and, if time allows, include several (no more than five) of your best serves.

For a middle blocker, show several repetitions of middle blocking that highlight your footwork to block on the left and right. You should also include multiple clips of blocking transition to attack and five to seven attacks from transition. Also, show five to seven attacks off a received serve, 10-15 hits/kills, and, if time allows, three to five of your best serves.

A setter’s highlight video needs to show 15 sets from all the positions and seven to 10 digs or defensive plays from right back. Then, add in five to seven attacks, five to seven blocks from right front and, if you have extra time, three to five of your best serves.

Outside hitters and right side hitters should include multiple attacks on both the left, right, and middle (utilizing second tempo sets, in the middle). Follow up with five to seven blocks and multiple clips of passes off live serves from left-back, middle back, and right back. Finish with three to five of your best serves if time allows.

Once you’ve assembled a highlight video that kills, post it to Youtube and your other social media accounts, add the link or embed it in your online recruiting profile, and keep it updated. Remember to include the link to your video every time you reach out to a college coach with an introductory email. That way, when a coach sees your highlights from the last few seasons, he or she will also be able to see everything you can bring to their team for the next four years!

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