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Social media, Hudl important for HS recruits

by TREVAN PIXLEY
Sports Editor | June 20, 2022 9:17 PM

Last week we discussed offseason camps and workouts for high school athletes who are preparing for the 2023 season.

Those camps are already in full swing, with several athletes from the area shining as individuals.

Performing well at these camps will obviously get you on the radar of college coaches, but the recruitment process isn’t what it used to be.

Social media and sites like Hudl, where athletes can upload their own highlight tape, have changed the game.

A big reason for that has to do with the COVID-19 pandemic.

On March 13, 2020, during the early days of the pandemic, the NCAA had a dead period that prevented face-to-face contact, which meant scouts were prevented from attending games, workouts, and practices.

During that time, Hudl and social media became instrumental to the recruitment process and since then, athletes have mastered their social media skills.

These two mediums have always been a key resource for recruiters, but during the pandemic it became the only option.

It’s been two years since the NCAA issued the dead period and scouts are back to attending games in-person and colleges are back to hosting camps.

However, athletes and colleges alike are really leaning into social media, making it an instrumental tool to the whole recruitment process.

Gone are the days of coming from a small school and not having a social media presence. Now, with things like Twitter and Hudl, anyone anywhere can have a shot at going to their desired college.

Being 23-years old and working in a field where being savvy on the internet is almost required, these high school athletes put my knowledge and experience to shame.

Their ability to edit videos and run their social media accounts is amazing. It’s completely different from what it was like even five years ago.

Before the boom of social media to the recruitment process, the idea of social media for high school and college athletes was almost looked down upon.

Whether at the high school level or the professional level. You’d see it time and time again where scouts or fans dig up an old tweet or video that would damage the prospect.

One of these stories that sticks out to me was Manti Te’o getting cat fished in 2013.

Even something like that, where he didn’t post anything malicious or harmful, tanked his draft stock.

Seeing things like that growing up could also play a role in the new age of social media. These kids are presenting themselves like professionals and not like, well, high school kids.

They’ve seen the effects of what posting negative things on social media can do long-term for their journey to the next level in athletics.

This is a good thing for their future, and who’s to say that they don’t have an alternate Twitter profile where they go and tweet their hot takes.

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