The days of splicing your best plays on film, mailing them off to college football coaches and waiting weeks or more for a response are long gone.
These days, football players use social media to instantly get their names and information out there.
Facebook, You Tube and Twitter are three popular forms of social media that help rising players get noticed by collegiate programs. Other outlets include
Digg, BallTribe, BallHyped, Gack Sports, MySpace, Tumblr, Sulia and Storify.
“I think using social media is really important because it’s the only resource I have right now to be able to get film out and whatever else I need, just to get on some coaches’ radars,” said Sean Clifford, a standout quarterback at
Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy and six-year NFA veteran. “Using social media is going to be really important for me as I move into high school.”
Along with other talented players around the country and in Canada, Clifford can post videos of his best plays and keep his statistics updated.
Many players with NFA backgrounds are learning the value of social media.
“It’s a smart way to get your name out there,” said NFA Coach Will Hewlett. “You don’t want to be posting anything controversial or anything that can get you in trouble. Be smart with social media and it can really help you in the recruiting process.”
Posting highlight plays and stats allows college coaches from around the country to get an early jump on evaluation.
Again, it is important to keep social media postings positive.
“Kids need to understand that they have to be very careful about what they do on social media,” Florida coach Will Muschamp told ESPN.
Muschamp, by the way, recently signed NFA vet Max Staver, a star senior quarterback out of Nashville, to a scholarship with the Gators.
Staver traveled to Gainesville, Fla., to throw for Muschamp and his coaching staff over the summer and received the scholarship offer.
But he used Twitter to keep college coaches updated on his progress, and Florida was just one of the schools that kept close tabs and expressed strong interest.
There are strict recruiting rules for college coaches, and that also applies to social media.
There is a limit to the number of phone calls college coaches can make to a potential football recruit, and the NCAA has banned most forms of text messaging.
During recruiting season, when coaches can make contact with recruits, the trend is sending messages via Facebook or Twitter rather than keeping in touch the old ways – phone calls and mail.
Players using social media tools and keeping themselves updated on popular message boards from schools they want to play for can keep track of other players being recruited at the same position.
NFA not only encourages players to take advantage of social media, it helps with the recruiting process.
Coach Hewlett (@WillHewlett) is constantly collecting stats and highlights on Twitter, and you can also get in the social media game at @NFAcoach. Coach JC Boice (@jcboice) is another helpful follow on Twitter.
Coach Hewlett and Boice have recruiting contacts all over the country and help spread the word on successful NFA participants.
Unless you are one of the top players in your class, it can be a challenge getting noticed by college football coaches.
Using social media helps you level that playing field and promote your skills to a wide variety of schools and outlets.