It’s commonly believed that high school athletes who are recruited to play sports in college have a much easier time getting accepted, even at the most prestigious academic institutions.
As New Yorker contributor Malcolm Gladwell noted in his article “Getting In”, “… recruited athletes have an acceptance rate to the Ivies at well over twice the rate of other students, despite SAT scores that are on average more than a hundred points lower.”
As such, well-intentioned parents shell out thousands of their hard-earned dollars to support their child’s athletic potential, from pay-for-use recruiting services to expensive recruiting events.
Concerned with this trend, a California-based sports social network called FieldLevel is changing the status quo, providing both coaches and aspiring athletes a better way.
“The best way to create collegiate playing opportunities for high school athletes is to help college coaches find what they’re looking for,” said Brenton Sullivan, FieldLevel CEO and co-founder. “Recruiting is all about relationships, so college coaches need to receive information from coaches they trust. Similar to employers on LinkedIn, FieldLevel allows coaches to connect with other coaches all across the country and identify qualified athletes in entirely new areas.”
First launched for college baseball, FieldLevel is an exclusive social network dedicated to sports recruiting that connects coaches and helps teams find athletes that best fit their programs.
“FieldLevel is relentless in its pursuit to improve recruiting,” said Frank Cruz, University of Southern California head baseball coach. “There has never been anything like it in our sport.”
Once approved as a member on FieldLevel, a college coach can connect with thousands of verified high school and club coaches around the country. The college coach receives information about players that match his specific personnel needs from coaches that he trusts and programs that he has recruited from in the past. A college coach also has the opportunity to forge new relationships, expanding his ability to recruit nationwide.
Russell Luce, a community college baseball coach from Arizona who used FieldLevel to help 12 of his players move onto Division I programs, said he believes FieldLevel is pioneering a new solution to the recruiting problem.
“FieldLevel isn’t one of these services that is trying to load up on athlete profiles and extract money from them,” explains Luce. “They understand how recruiting actually works and created a way to make it better.”
FieldLevel is free for athletes to join, but their current high school or club coach must invite them, guaranteeing that they’re legitimate college recruits. This helps provide athletes the best, most realistic college opportunities.
Mike Spiers, general manager of ABD Academy in Southern California, home to major leaguers like Allen Craig and Tommy Hanson, said FieldLevel provides his high school athletes tremendous opportunities.
“We were able to place dozens of our athletes at schools all over the country. More than 34 of them committed to schools from California to Iowa to Louisiana that we didn’t know would possibly be interested in our players. FieldLevel exposes our players to schools we never could reach before.”
In just over a year, FieldLevel has flipped the mainstream model on its head and college coaches around the country have taken notice. Winning top honors from the American Baseball Coaches Association, FieldLevel is now used by over 70% of all college baseball programs.
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