Updated: Apr 28, 2022
High School Football players that aspire to play at the NxtLvl have a lot on their plate in today's recruiting climate. On top of continuing to strive to be better on and off the field, getting the proper exposure and being identified by a college coach can be tricky. I'll be continuing to discuss the current state of college football recruiting, Division I in particular, in our Blog BUT let's start with the basics . . . The 2022 NCAA Division I College Football Recruiting Calendar.
Below is a snapshot of the current 2022 NCAA Division I College Football Recruiting Calendar (Both for FBS & FCS). As you will see there are 4 Periods: Evaluation Period, Contact Period, Quiet Period, & Dead Period.
Step 1 is to familiarize yourself with the current calendar and have a clear understanding of what each period is defined as:
Evaluation Period - The NCAA Evaluation Period is a specific time of year when college coaches are allowed to watch an athlete compete in person or visit their school. However, coaches are not allowed to communicate with that athlete (or parents) off the college campus. Coaches can sit in the stands during a recruit’s practice or game, as well as visit the recruit’s school. This gives college coaches a chance to talk to the recruit’s coach, teachers or guidance counselor to get a better understanding of the student-athlete’s character. After the visit, the coach may call or email the recruit and let them know how their experience was at the school or game. The NCAA Evaluation Period is just that: a time set aside for evaluation. While coaches can’t talk to athletes off the college campus, they can still call, email, text and direct message recruits. Evaluation periods are very specific so identify them on the calendar below and activate.
Contact Period - The NCAA Contact Period is exactly what it sounds like—all communication between athletes and coaches is fair game. Coaches can email, text, call, direct message and generally contact athletes and their parents through any NCAA-approved method. In-person contact can occur on the college campus, as well as at tournaments, at the recruit’s school and home. In other words, the communication floodgates are open, so take advantage of this opportunity to get unlimited access to talk to coaches. PLEASE NOTE, the impact of COVID-19 on NCAA eligibility: The NCAA Eligibility Center loosened standards for students who initially enroll full-time during the 2021–22 academic year and intend to play D1 or D2 sports. Students won’t be required to take the ACT or SAT by the NCAA. To keep track of updates that will impact eligibility for current and future recruiting classes.
Quiet Period - The NCAA defines the quiet period as a time when “a college coach may not have face-to-face contact with college-bound student-athletes or their parents off the college campus and may not watch student-athletes compete or visit their high school.” To break it down, the NCAA Quiet Period is a time you can talk to college coaches in-person on their college campus. However, the coach is not allowed to watch athletes compete in-person, visit their school, talk to them at their home—or talk to them anywhere outside of the college campus. The goal of this period is to give elite recruits a break from getting visited by college coaches at their games and at their home. For average recruits, this time will feel like a contact period. You can still text, call, email or direct message coaches during this time—and you should be reaching out to stay proactive in your recruiting. The quiet period is a specific recruiting period in the NCAA calendar for Division I and Division II sports to regulate when and how coaches can contact athletes throughout the year. While it’s up to the coaches to comply with the NCAA calendar, it’s important for athletes to know the different recruiting periods on the calendar so they develop realistic expectations of the type of recruiting that will take place throughout the year.
Dead Period - The most restrictive of all the recruiting periods is the NCAA Dead Period. During the dead period, coaches may not have any in-person contact with recruits and/or their parents. In other words, coaches are not allowed to talk to recruits at their college campus, the athlete’s school, an athletic camp or even the grocery store. While the term “dead period” makes it seem like all recruiting stops during this time, that’s actually not the case. Athletes and coaches are still allowed to communicate via phone, email, social media and other digital communication channels. While NCAA Division 1 programs are prohibited from conducting any in-person recruiting, D1 college coaches can still contact student-athletes via digital forms of communication during the dead period. The goal of the NCAA Dead Period is to give athletes a little bit of time and breathing room to think about what school they want to sign with.