The purpose of this study is to examine the different persuasion techniques utilized by the head coaches, who are members of the National Collegiate Athletic Association for the United States’ Division III program, when recruiting a high school student-athlete without having the ability to award athletic scholarship money. This study will also provide information about how team identity plays a role when recruiting athletes into a specific program. This study interviews three Division III men’s basketball coaches, and three Division III women’s basketball coaches. Three themes emerged after conducting the study. First, each coach shapes his or her team to fit a certain team identity, and recruit certain players that fit into their team identity and system. Second, coaches and current players use identification to connect personally with the recruits and to create a comfortable environment. Last, the coaches and currents players create a positive vision of the future that allows the recruit to experience what college life would be like at their institutions. Within the process, there are two primary areas of emphasis: academics—which are equally important to a recruit’s athletic talent—and the current players. Each theme is part of a process that must be in place and are intertwined in order to guarantee a success recruiting process. Other scholars who will consider conducting more research on this topic should interview recruits and players, and also shadow different coaches while they are in the recruiting process.


Boser, Beth


Communication Studies


Interpersonal and Small Group Communication | Organizational Communication


recruiting, student-athlete, NCAA, Division III

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



© Copyright 2015 Martin Jalen Goodwin