How Covid-19 Has Impacted College Recruiting Process for High School Athletes

Caroline Glus, Video Producer

The recruitment process is different for every athlete, and can change based on many factors. Some may include the sport you play, division, and desired school. Division II and III athletics have much more leniency in terms of recruiting compared to Division I schools, and Covid-19 has created many more obstacles. 

The NCAA has recently announced that they have extended their dead period for division I athletes until April 15, 2021. The dead period restricts student athletes from meeting with coaches face-to-face, and doesn’t allow coaches to do any in-person scouting. According to NCSA sports, division II and III athletic programs are allowed to meet with athletes in all forms of contact.



Due to Covid-19 many college athletes had their spring and fall seasons cancelled. According to ESPN, because so many athletes had their seasons taken away, the NCAA gave them a 5th year of eligibility. This directly impacts current high school athletes because the more 5th year students that decide to stay an extra year, the less spots on their rosters they need to fill. The restricted roster spots have increased competition. 

According to NCSA, because meeting with coaches directly is rare during the pandemic, it is important to maintain your presence online by creating skills videos, manage your communication with coaches, and to stay on top of any NCAA announcements regarding the dead period. Due to the limited in person contact, coaches are forced to make decisions more heavily based on film videos and phone calls increasing the importance of your online presence.

Division II and III schools are on a less strict schedule. According to NCSA, division II schools have been following a normal schedule. As of September 1st they have been allowed to talk with athletes per usual. Division III schools have a more relaxed schedule. Division III athletes can commit late into their senior year, whereas juniors, especially 2020 and 2021, typically commit during their junior year if they are going to a division I school. 

The recruitment process for all athletes is incredibly stressful. The pandemic has created pressures no athlete has ever experienced before. The setbacks in the recruiting process are just some of the challenges the pandemic has created for student athletes everywhere.