For basketball coaches September marks the key month in the recruiting process. It is a time where coaches have to balance their time between getting out on the road to meet prospective recruits and their families as well as entertain recruits on campus. When coach in the state of Montana this can be a complicated scheduling task.
Today (September 9th) is the stat of the fall men’s basketball Contact Period (the women’s contact period begins September 16th) in the recruiting calendar and continues until October 5th (Women’s until October 6th). The contact period is the only time when coaches can get out and do in home visits with potential recruits, to meet the recruits’ family and convince the recruit take an official visit to their campuses. Coaches want to get out and get this done as soon as possible so they can get their prime recruits on campus as soon as possible. I know that according to my twitter list this morning that Bobcat coaches Huse and Starr were heading out to court prospects bright and early today.
The second part of the September recruiting process is to get folks on campus for official visits. While official visits can take place almost during contact periods, evaluation periods, and quiet periods (almost the entire year) a prospect can not take any official visits prior to his/her first day of high school classes of their senior year. Thus, September marks for the most part the first time high school recruits can take official visits.
In general, although not always, coaches try to get their favorite recruits in as early as possible. Now this does not always work when trying to work around the recruit’s schedule. Coaches also try to arrange that recruits visit to coincide with home football game (although not so much of a priority for women recruits). Homecoming is also a key date for recruits to bring Montana recruits on to campus for visits. One final trick coaches use for a high priority recruit is to bring them in with commits. If you have one or two players who have committed to the program bring in an uncommitted recruit on the same date that they know or you think they will get along with at the same time and see if you can create some chemistry. There is many more trick coaches can use but these are a couple I have seen used recently.
While recruiting continues in to October and November in preparation for the November signing period September is critical for having a good fall recruiting period. If you do not have a productive September, it will just put you that much more behind come October.