You have dreamed of throwing in college, becoming the next freak shot putter or discus thrower. Working your butt off to achieve the coveted All-American status, the next NCAA Champion, the next school record holder. These are dreams that have inspired you, they have motivated you, they have created an inner fire incomparable to anything else. The dreams that have sparked the urge to become a CHAMPION. In came CoronaVirus.
Is the dream over? What are college coaches doing? How can high school athletes keep the dream alive?
Is it Over?
The doom and gloom is real. Gyms are closed all over, even most public parks are closed. Olympic caliber athletes like CiCi Onyekwere have been kicked off her throwing circle! This is a woman who has finished 13th in the world and is not allowed to continue to train effectively even when there is no one on the respective field.
Does this make success impossible? There has to be some way to improve the situation. That is where CiCi’s story comes into play. That is where Alex Rose’s story comes into play. These are two discus throwers who are ranked in the top 20 in the world and both are living in Michigan. What are they doing?
Alex has been fortunate enough to gather resources and build a circle in his backyard. He has set up enough weights to keep his strength training rolling and to keep making big-time progress. Alex has even noted watching more film is helping him be introspective about his technique and even FEEL his technique while he is visualizing and working toward technical advancement.
CiCi has been relegated to drilling on sidewalks and on her apartment balcony. Is this optimal? Absolutely not. BUT, that is what champions do, they make the most out of their situation and they strive toward constant progress with what is in front of them. CiCi can now spend this time working on various mobility issues, unilateral strength, and trunk stability. This is still a time to make progress, to make gains and to work toward those massive goals. Time is valuable and it cannot be wasted with a “woe is me attitude.”
Ok, so what does this have to do with college recruiting? The college season is over, the high school seasons are all but canceled, the virus is still spreading and for the foreseeable future, there will likely not be any meets held for athletes to compete.
This past week, I spent quite a bit of time speaking with a few collegiate throws coaches AND even spoke with multiple college coaches in other sports as well. Their message was unique. They have all the time they could ever want for recruiting. What does that mean?
If you haven’t checked out our interview with Scott Cappos, the University of Nebraska’s throws coach, I recommend doing so. Cappos went into a bit of detail on his procedures. He is taking direct messages from throwers, he is checking out the results of internet competitions, he is spending time analyzing high school athletes, perhaps more than ever before!
He noted, “We have all the time in the world to check out HS throwers, now.”
Now, more than ever, having a Me vs. The World attitude will come into positive play. They want to see the high school kids throwing off sidewalks, they want to see the high school kids throwing dumbbells, shot puts in the backyard, throwing logs for resistance training. The kids that are grinding now are the kids the elite college coaches want!
Are they submitting videos to get a Technical Analysis and make technical improvements during this downtime? If so, they want you. They see your drive, they see your urgency to continue improvement.
Are they training by their circle? Are they lifting on sidewalks? Smashing weights in a crazy garage at an undisclosed location? If so, they want you!
Are there athletes investing in a unique training program to get a big stimulus from this new form of training? Are there kids taking a risk on their training and just smashing bodyweight movements as much as possible? Maybe they are smashing the ThrowsU Parts Program, working their tails off as they continue to strive to become a champion. If you are, they want you!
Now is not the time to stop. Now is not the time to feel sorry for yourself. We live in a time of Social Media on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitch, Twitter, TikTok, etc…! There is no better time to show your value, to prove your work ethic, to come out of this as a stronger person with an incredible drive to conquer all obstacles. College coaches are watching, they are paying attention, they are looking for the kid who makes ZERO excuses to get to the top. This is a time of tragedy but also a time to thrive and push oneself past limits never before understood. Training alone can be difficult but the introspection it sparks is precisely what develops a champion and college coaches recognize that!