Hi! I’m a high school junior and I’m fairly certain I want to row DIII in college. When does it make sense to fill out recruitment forms? I’m going to visit a college I’m potentially interested in in about a month and I was thinking of filling out their form and maybe sending the coach an email but I’m not sure if I’m serious about the school yet and I don’t want to waste their time. Thank you!
Now would definitely be a great time to fill out the recruiting forms, especially since you’re going to visit some schools soon. I would also send an email to the coaches at the schools you’re looking at, just indicating your interest and that you’ll be on campus, would it be possible to connect while you’re in town, etc. That way you can get some information on the program while looking at the school and save yourself some time down the road (when you’ll likely be busier with school, SATs/ACTs, etc.) if you decide that you actually are interested in applying here. I only applied to a small handful of schools (like, three I think…) but I emailed several coaches beforehand just to get info on their programs so that I could look at all of the athletics and academics at the same time. I did this while I was still considering a larger range of schools and like I said, ultimately it just saved me a lot of time in the end.
It’s not really a waste of anyone’s time unless you’re leading them on by saying you’re interested when you’re really not (that goes for coaches when talking to prospective athletes too). You’re not at that point yet though so there’s nothing wrong with reaching out and introducing yourself, especially since you’re just at the beginning of the wonderful process that is applying to college. If you decide the school’s not for you, that’s cool – as coaches I think we’d all rather you come to that conclusion sooner rather than later anyways (more for your benefit than ours too, to be honest).