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NCAA Division II Baseball
Coach Doug Jones
Head Baseball Coach
Question: You are considered one of the best recruiters in
NCAA Division II college baseball, what do you consider your "strong points" or
best assets when it comes to recruiting?
Answer: I hope, number one, that I am honest with every player
I recruit so they know exactly where we see them fitting into
our program. We have to look at guys that are not always the
top players, we must find players that we think can develop
into our system. I am hopeful that we can continue to find
the right players for our program.
Question: In your opinion, how has college baseball recruiting
changed in the past few years (5 or so). Has the popularity
of the internet made any changes in how you recruit of go a
bout finding players? Do you use e-mail as a tool in recruiting?
Answer: Fall ball has changed to be a major part of the
recruiting process. There is an event every weekend in
several locations around the region. Each coach and staff
member then must pick where they need to be. Coaches
spend a lot of time running from showcase to showcase
every weekend to see the select few players they need to.
It would be more beneficial to all parties if there were
less showcases and more players attended a select few in
each region. On the positive side, fall ball now allows
our staff to see players we would not see in the spring
and may miss in the summer. The Internet is great for us.
It helps us get access to many things we could not at our
size school. We can send e-mails to juniors and follow
their process on a more one to one level without phone
calls (which are a NCAA restriction).
Question: In talking with parents of high school players
and potential college baseball student-athletes, many times
I feel that a college coach may have to recruit the parents
as aggressively as the players. Do you find that to be true?
Answer: Yes, very much so. Baseball players are not getting
the full-rides. That means, in most cases, the parents are
the ones paying the rest of the college expenses. This makes
baseball parents very involved in their son's lives and
decision-making process. They want to know their sons will
be safe and happy for the next four years.
Question: When watching a player, how important is his
"personal appearance" to your overall evaluation and future
recruitment of that player?
Answer: It is very important to us how a player carries
himself on and off the field.
Question: There has been some discussion in recent months
about college baseball programs possibly returning to using
wooden bats. Do you have any thoughts or comments?
Answer: Right now I do not think it would be financially
feasible for most college baseball programs.
Question: Do you have any other comments of advice for a
player that has aspirations of playing college baseball?
Answer: Keep working hard and, make the most of the opportunities
that are presented to you.
Question: With regards to recruiting - do you have a specific
geographic area that you recruit from, or do you recruit
Answer: We recruit nationally as well as internationally.
Being a private school, we have one set cost of tuition for
in and out of state students.
Question: : If a player were interested in Tusculum baseball,
when would be the time for him send a brief letter of
introduction? Which grade in school/what time of year?
Answer: The best time is during the summer of their junior
year in high school.
Question: Which of the following things would be good for
a player to include with a first letter?
*Season Statistics - Okay, but not needed
*Photo of player - No
*Newspaper clippings - No
*Short video tape - Yes
*Names/telephone # of pro scouts that have seen the player - Yes,
this is a big focus because many times this gives us a fair
and neutral report on players that are not from our area.
Answer: Note: Items in bold type are responses by Coach Jones
Question: What is the typical roster size for your program?
What is the approximate breakdown of pitchers VS position players?
Answer: We carry about 40 players on our roster. That is
for Varsity and Junior Varsity. We will have about 15 pitchers
and the rest are position players.
Question: Professional baseball seems to have a "love affair"
with bigger players. In other words, pitchers over 6' tall,
Derek Jeter sized shortstops, etc. What are your feelings
when it comes to evaluating and recruiting players for your
Answer: We look for players that fit our system. We like
to run and be very athletic on the bases. With our new park
it lends itself to more of an athletic game. So from the
baseball side, we look for players that can keep the pressure
on the defense. The most important thing we look for are
student athletes with strong character and academics.
Question: When watching a player, how important is his
"attitude appearance" to your overall evaluation and future
Answer: Very important. First impressions mean a lot; not
just physical performance, but how a player carries himself.
Question: What other items, if any, would be helpful in a
first contact letter?|
Answer: Very important things are current GPA, current test
score information (SAT or ACT), summer and fall team, and a
Question: If a tape is beneficial to you and your staff,
what suggestions would you make to the player? Such as:
all game situations, some individual fielding and batting
situations, pitchers in games only or throwing to a good
Answer: Sure we will review every tape we get and we like
tapes that are short and to the point. No frills, just the
basics: hitters from the open side, fielders basic ground
balls, pitchers from behind the catcher or on their open
side. Keep it simple.
Question: With the increasing number of high school talent
showcases in recent years, how important is it for a player
to attend this type of event? Do you and/or the coaching
staff attend any showcases?|
Answer: Our staff attended many last year. We thought as
a whole that the Blue Gray showcases and the Baseball Factory
were among the best for us.
Question: Do you attend tournaments during the summer months
to watch players on the better travel teams?
Answer: Yes, our summer recruiting is separated between
showcases and certain summer teams we need to see.
Question: : How important would you consider it to be for a
player to play on one of the better summer teams? One that
competes at the highest levels of competition regionally and
Answer: Very Important, the better the competition, the
better the player will become.
Question: Do you prefer to watch a player in a game with
a travel team, at a quality tournament, or at a top high
Answer: We like to evaluate players in game situations.
Question: Which of the current high school baseball talent
showcases to you feel are the best? |
Answer: Each year we try to go to as many states junior
day events as we can. We also go to Team One, Blue Gray, The
Baseball Factory, and many others.
Question: Are the "online" internet services taken
seriously by college coaches? Would you recommend them
to a high school player and his family? |
Answer: I would be very careful with online services,
we do use certain ones, my advice to parents would be,
make sure you do your homework.
Question: Do you hold summer and/or holiday camps?
If so, how important or beneficial would you consider
it to be for a prospective player to attend?|
Answer: We do hold summer camps, which are designed
more for local kids. We also hold summer and fall tournaments,
which allows us the opportunity to evaluate a lot of players. Coach Doug Jones
Head Baseball Coach
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