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The huddle

February 20, 2017

Colby Track & Field Coach Dave Cusano Offers Recruiting Advice

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Coach Cusano has certainly made an impact with his coaching career by already coaching 53 All-American performances during his first year at Colby College and four years at Wheaton College.

Before Wheaton, Cusano coached at his alma mater, the University of Maine, where he not only was the recruiting coordinator but also named the University of Maine Coach of the Year and was a member of the America East Coaching Staff of the Year in 2009.

He was a two-time New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Coach of the Year on top of coaching 74 NEWMAC all-conference performances.

What is the most important quality you look for in a recruit?

Character, responding to emails, phone calls and information requests. Reality in recruiting process. Talent identification.

What is the best way for a recruit to get on your radar? 

Fill out our online prospect form and follow it up with an email to myself.

When should an athlete contact you, what is the best way? (age, grade, time of year, email, phone or other)

Start of junior year if they are really interested in my school. If they are just fishing then middle of junior year.

What are your expectations for incoming players in the classroom, in the weight room, and on the track?

Classroom comes first, I am currently at a very high standing academic institution so it speaks for itself. Weight room will be taught by staff (novice) is acceptable. Track 1%-4% we will work to get 1% better per year so over 4 years we are 4% better. Focusing on the little things.

What are the do’s and don’ts when being recruited?

Do: Call back if we leave a message and be honest with yourself and our staff.

Don’t: We shouldn’t have to email or call via your folks. It’s ok if they also want to speak on a given day but they are not the ones who will be on my team.

What is the best advice you can offer a recruit?

Do your homework- know what we offer, know about our team, know about how you would or wouldn’t fit in.

What really jumps out at you when reviewing a recruit’s highlight tape?

Overall athleticism.

What are the main do’s and don’ts for a recruit’s highlight tape?

I don’t need music, charts, flashy, just the facts.

When do you recommend recruits put together and share their highlight reels? Is it best to make their highlight reel during offseason, in the middle of season, or after each game?

For me in track and field, I’d like a few races and if possible some practice tape because in our sport some game video quality is poor.

What advice do you have for recruits that get turned down by their dream schools? What are their options if they don’t gain the recruiting attention they desire?

Be honest with yourself! Your dream school is just that DREAM- I hope your dreams come true but also have a plan that’s realistic.

How big a factor is social media when recruiting players? What advice do you have for athletes regarding social media? 

You are responsible for everything you post– think of it as a diary that everyone can read.


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Photo courtesy of: Colby Magazine