20 Things A Coach Hates To See In Your Highlight Videos

Updated: Sep 14

We all know that highlight videos are critical if you want to play at the next level. They do not necessarily make or break your opportunity to receive an offer, but your video is your

tool for grabbing a coach’s attention.  For some reason though, highlight videos are also one of the most confusing pieces of the recruiting puzzle to get right. Over the last few years we have had the opportunity to watch a lot of Hudl and YouTube highlights.  We have seen a lot of outstanding videos and we have seen our share of videos that make potentially critical mistakes.  So rather than write a how-to make a video story we thought it would be more helpful to tell you how not to make your video. The following list highlights those things you need to avoid. Some of which can lead to a coach automatically dropping you as a prospect and others that could make the road to an offer more difficult.


RED LIGHT(Avoid at all costs)


1.Do not use music with profanity, racial slurs, or sexual suggestive lyrics.  Using this type of music reflects poorly on your character and a lot of coaches will drop you as a prospect immediately.  In fact, just get rid of the music altogether.  Most coaches just mute it.


2.Do not add crazy graphics or transitions between plays.  If a coach is watching your highlight he is only interested in evaluating how you play and he has a limited amount of time to do it. Don’t add in any distractions.


3.Do not include special effects like slow motion, fast forward or sound. See above.   You are only doing yourself a disservice. Coaches don't have the time or patience for this.


4.Do not place random photos of yourself in the middle of clips or place slide shows between clips. Please, please stop wasting the coach’s time.


5.Do not send coaches a broken link to your video.  Pretty self-explanatory, if a coach can’t click to your video, he can’t evaluate you.


6.Do not make your highlight video private.  Again pretty obvious, but it happens more often than you think.  If a coach can’t view you video you will quickly be disregarded.


7.Do not show highlights with dirty hits or plays.  Another character red flag and a quick trip to the trash bin on the coach’s computer.


8.Do not include clips were the lighting quality or film quality is poor.  What’s the point?  A coach can’t evaluate your play if he can’t see you.


9.Do not leave the big yellow arrow pointing at you for the whole play.  Again, if the coach can’t see you, he cannot evaluate you.


10.Do not try to slip a great clip into the highlight more than once.  We see this more than we care to mention.  Who are you trying to trick?  It is easy to pick up on, reflects poor character and wastes a coach’s time.



Example: What Not To Do

We wouldn’t normally want to call out a specific video as an example of what not to do.  But, this video was already used for just that in an article on SB Nation a few years ago.  Watch it and see how many issues you can find.




YELLOW LIGHT(Proceed with caution)


1.Do not have a highlight video that runs longer than 5 minutes.  A coach has to watch hundreds, even thousands of videos.  Their time is limited.  Besides, if you haven’t managed to catch a coaches attention after 5 minutes of clips, what makes you think more time will help?


2.Do not put highlight clips in the order you play the games.  The purpose of a highlight video is to showcase your skills and talent.  If your clips are in chronological order than coaches aren’t seeing your best plays first.


3.Do not forget to start with your best plays first.  You only have 30 seconds or less to capture a coach’s attention.  If you aren’t starting your highlights with your 10 best plays than you are already losing the coach.


4.Do not forget to show all your different skills and attributes. Give the coach the opportunity to truly evaluate all of your skills.  For instance, if you are a QB show him that you can make all the different throws, show your footwork, show your mobility, etc.  Don’t let them think you are a one trick pony.


5.Do not show the entire play from huddle to tackle.  Trim the video to show only from snap to tackle.  Or even better, if you fall out of the frame, cut the clip at that point.


6.Do not forget to highlight yourself at the beginning of each play.  A coach can’t evaluate you if he can’t identify where you are on the field.


7.Do not forget to identify what number and position you play at the beginning of the video.  Yes, highlighting yourself at the beginning of each play will probably be sufficient, but why take any chances.


8.Do not include every play from the last season.  Coaches are not going to be interested in watching every play.  If they want more than just a highlight video of your best plays they will request game film from you or your coach.


9.Do not include the same play from multiple angles.  Why, why, why?  Pick the best angle and stick with it.  Don’t waste the coach’s time.


10.Do not pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars to produce your highlight video.  You do not need to use a high cost service to have a quality highlight video.  In most cases, Hudl provides all the tools you need to edit and produce a great video.  If you do need to hire somebody, you should be able to get a quality video for no more than a couple hundred dollars.





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