Hudl's High-Tech Recruiting Changing the Game

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This Wednesday's National Letter of Intent signing day will be different from past years. High-tech recruiting advancements have shortened the time it takes for college recruiters to evaluate high school prospects. At the forefront of this shift to high-tech recruiting are websites like Hudl.com that use the same video technology that powers sites like YouTube, Hulu, and Netflix. Just as you would stream last night’s episode of Lost, coaches can use Hudl to stream last night’s game to players and recruiters.

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In what used to take months, scholarship offers now happen in ten minutes. With these two athletes, a verbal commitment came literally in three to four days.

This Wednesday's National Letter of Intent signing day will be different from past years. High-tech recruiting advancements have shortened the time it takes for college recruiters to evaluate high school prospects. At the forefront of this shift to high-tech recruiting are websites like Hudl.com that use the same video technology that powers sites like YouTube, Hulu, and Netflix. Just as you would stream last night’s episode of Lost, coaches can use Hudl to stream last night’s game to players and recruiters.

Every high school football player dreams of playing at the next level. To make the dream reality, you have to get noticed and you have to get noticed early. Division I college programs recruit players for the next year’s class in late winter through the summer months. This leaves a small window of opportunity for a player to be seen.

Wide receiver Quincy Enunwa wasn’t able to take advantage of this early start. As a junior in 2008, he was playing behind an outstanding senior at Rancho Verde High School (Calif.) and was rarely able to showcase his talents. If Quincy wanted to play for a Division I program, he needed to catch up quickly.

“He was a late bloomer,” Rancho Verde head coach Pete Duffy said. “And because of that, I had little film on a player that was quickly forming into an all-star in front of my eyes. College recruiters didn’t want to see film in a few weeks after we had some more games – they wanted to see film now.”

Not that long ago, filling these immediate video requests would have been impossible. Assembling player highlight videos for recruiters was a full-time job for coaches that usually had to be saved for the end of the season. New technology and recruiting methods have changed the game. Coach Duffy was able to log onto Hudl.com, the online video solution used by the Rancho Verde HS football program, and quickly pull Enunwa’s highlights.

“The University of Nebraska called me, and literally with a click of a button I had recruiters looking at Quincy’s film,” Duffy said. “The recruiter showed the online highlights to the assistants and then within minutes after sending the film, I’m on the phone with the head coach talking about Enunwa. Out of nowhere, Quincy was on the map.”

As the NCAA attempts to regulate this technological explosion, coaches, recruiters, and players are quickly grasping these advancements and using them to their full advantage. Between the internet, text and instant messaging, Facebook, and Twitter, any coach using only handwritten letters or calls to communicate with players risks lagging behind his tech-savvy competitors. Not keeping up with the latest technology is an easy way to lose a potential recruit.

“I’m out of the DVD business,” explained Coach Duffy. “No more spending hours burning and mailing DVDs and having to hear about them not being compatible or getting damaged. If a college coach wants film and asks me for a DVD, I tell them they are going to have to get with the times and check out my Hudl account.”

At the forefront of this shift to high-tech recruiting are websites like Hudl.com that use the same video technology that powers sites like YouTube, Hulu, and Netflix. Just as you would stream last night’s episode of Lost, coaches can use Hudl to stream last night’s game to players and recruiters. They can personalize the video by layering voice comments, spot shadows, and real time stats on the video to help recruiters make quick decisions.

Duffy also used the same process to send film to recruiters for Ronald Powell, the top-ranked athlete in the entire 2010 recruiting class according to Rivals.com. Powell has verbally committed to the University of Florida.

“With both Enunwa and Powell, after I emailed out their highlights it was a done deal,” Duffy said. “In what used to take months, scholarship offers now happen in ten minutes. And with these two athletes, a verbal commitment came literally in three to four days.”

About Hudl

Hudl was initially released in 2007 to help major colleges and professional teams win. After the first season of use by the University of Nebraska and the New York Jets, it was apparent that coaches at all levels could benefit from the powerful video tools Hudl offers.

In 2008, Hudl was released for high schools, colleges, and youth teams, with the mission to bring the same tools used on the professional level to coaches across the country. Today, over 500 teams from youth sports to the NFL use Hudl to help them dominate the game.

For more information about Hudl, please visit http://www.hudl.com.

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Kim Burnham
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