What not to do when making a highlight tape… 7 tips to help you look better!

 The one that gets your recruited …

I guess I have seen my share of highlight or ‘mix tapes’ over the years, some good and some …. so here is my advice of what not to do

Music – Make a smart choice, it takes a little effort to add music to your own video so the coaches will know that you have decided to add a part of yourself by your choice of music, any track with foul language is a NO.  Anything that has lyrics check them ( what message are you sending about yourself).  Check for Copyright – some tracks added are copyrighted and will not play in America despite not showing any problem in Europe.  Music is not essential so if in doubt leave it out.

Still Photos – a few maybe as a back drop to your player profile information but not loads – this is a video to show your basketball skills not how pretty you are! if some of the pictures demonstrate your Athleticism (grabbing a rebound off the ring, blocking a shot)  or your physicality then that’s fine but less is best.

Information – Add a few basic details, your name, when you graduate, height, position (be clear on what playing position you hope to be recruited to, 6’2 then many coaches will assume you play in the post but if you are a skilled wing then let them know) contact information at the end of your clip then you know the coaches have watched your whole tape.  It’s a good idea to include this information in the details beneath your video especially if it’s easier for them to copy and paste your email address. Don’t add lots of screen shots of stats they are usually too difficult to read and are not needed as part of the highlight.

Content – what to include and how long ? Just a few minutes is fine. A range of offensive skills ( in transition, shooting and drives to the basket, post up moves or PG play if appropriate ) and some defensive action where you can show on ball defense and off ball and rebounding.  Don’t have lots of clips of scoring offensive put backs unless you have more to offer ! and don’t have just clips of playing in a static zone defense. We don’t need to to see you shoot lots of free throws either. Your not going to secure a college scholarship because you knocked down back to back FT’s in a u16 league two years ago! By the way if your highlight clip is just a few minutes long and the video is taken from lots of different games ( yes the opposition where different colour kits and the gyms look different ) then it gives us an idea you only do one or two good things a game…

Info Graphics – nope not really… College coaches know what a rebound is, we really don’t need you to freeze the video have an arrow pointing to your head stating ‘rebound’ and then be thrilled to see you actually grab a rebound.

Format and platform – NCAA coaches are very busy they prefer to be able to access your video right away, not wait for a we transfer download etc.  Use youtube or vimeo etc.  One advantage of vimeo is the statistics view, this enables you to actually see how many times your video has been watched in the USA rather than your view count be made up of that guy who always ask you to play one and one and he still doesn’t get you don’t like him.

Video quality – I guess any video is better than none but if we cant see your playing number clearly and or you look like you are 1 meter tall because the video is shot from the highest point in the gym its not that great. Hey but don’t get to close, a video where spectators walk across the shot or your cant see if its actually you who took the corner 3 pointer don’t work either.

Next and most important – Have at least two copies of full games tapes ready – if a coach is interested then they are going to ask to see more film, don’t have them waiting for two months whilst you promise to get some ready.

Wish you the best of luck with your recruiting efforts if you need any further help don’t hesitate to ask.

Dan Bowmaker aka Mr Blue Star Europe

Take a look back at some of the mistakes other players have made .. http://wp.me/p1FCuL-kq


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