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February 15, 2012
Thousands of high school players produce football recruiting highlight videos in an effort to get a scholarship.
We're here to tell you how to do it right.
Here is a quick list of dos and don'ts:
DO: Get to your best clips ASAP
College coaches know what they're looking for. Show it to them. Your first clips should be your best - and have the biggest 'wow' factor.
DON'T: Have a long introduction screen
The coach will know who you are when he sees your introduction letter. Don't waste his time by telling him again when he pops in your DVD. He wants to see you in action from the moment he presses play.
DO: Pick only your best plays
Coaches may only watch 4-5, so make sure they are seeing your best. You don't need to build up to anything or put them in chronological order.
DON'T: Use slow-motion or fast-motion or show plays twice
No one looks better either way. More so, coaches watch thousands of hours of tape at game speed - don't make them view you in another mode. And remember, coaches can (and will) rewind your plays if they want to take a second look.
DO: Pad the beginning of each clip - and let the play run
Start the clip a couple seconds before the snap. Give the coach a few seconds to scan the field, locate where you are, and get a feel for the alignment of the play. Don't pad too much! You want as many clips as possible in that first minute. And let the play go to the end - that is, don't leave coaches wondering if you fumbled the ball when you were tackled.
DON'T: Add anything to the highlights
Forget about transition effects (clips that dissolve or fade out). They're annoying and can cut out things coaches want to see. Worse are comments on the screen. There's no need to say 'amazing move' or 'big hit' - the coaches will see that for themselves.
DO: Include a full game film, too
Highlights are nice; giving a recruiter the ability to see how you perform on each play is even better. Remember to include game date and opponent.
DON'T: Put your stats/honors at beginning of the reel
No player has ever earned a scholarship offer based on all-star selections. It is fine to list stats and awards at the end of your reel. But again, coaches want to see your clips when they hit "play."
DO: Include your name, school, uniform number and, most importantly, contact information
Home address, phone numbers and e-mails for you, your parents and your coaches is essential. All of this should be included in writing in the packet you send out, but it also should be included on the screen - but at end of the highlights.
Here's an example of how we turned an OK video package into a great one.
Issues to watch: There are slow-motion clips, replays, and an unnecessary introduction slate. In addition, there's no way the second play is his second best play of his junior season. Then his third play is cut-off. In the end, there are just seven plays of action in 2:04 of tape. That's too slow moving.
There are nearly twice as many plays (13) in less time (1:51). Simply put, there is more action and fewer distractions.
OK. That's it. Good luck.