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The huddle

September 5, 2019

NC State Volleyball Coach Linda Hampton-Keith Offers Recruiting Advice

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Photo by American Volleyball Association

Coach Hampton-Keith is in her fourth year as a Wolfpack. During her first year, Hampton-Keith broke the NC State volleyball record with 13 Atlantic Coast Conference wins, nine-game sweeps, and has earned the program’s first top-10 win while being one of five Division I first-year head coaches to lead a team to 20 or more wins. She was the only one in her conference to achieve this. 

Hampton-Keith has been busy leading the Wolfpacks to 16 new team season records. Her team’s accolades include the first top-10 win in her program’s history, ten All-ACC selections, a whopping five AVCA All-Region selections, and two AVCA All-Americans. Impressive!

Hampton-Keith was also an assistant coach for 14 years at the Division I level with five years at Arizona State as an associate head coach where she was known for her recruiting abilities by enhancing the Sun Devils’ recruiting efforts. She produced nationally-ranked recruiting classes in four of her five years at NC State as well as six seasons as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Texas Christian University.

Hampton-Keith also has over 12 years of coaching experience in the USA Volleyball Youth Development Program and three years of experience as a head coach of a varsity program at the high school level. Some advice from coach Hampton-Keith on playing at the next level.

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

Coach Hampton-Keith: Compatibility with our culture, athleticism, and skills that would advance our efforts in our conference and nationally.

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

Coach Hampton-Keith: Come to camp.

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

Coach Hampton-Keith: NOT email. Either phone or through a campus visit or through their coaches.

LRT Sports: What are your expectations for incoming players in the classroom, in the weight room, and on the court?

Coach Hampton-Keith: Expectations would be for incoming athletes to come in ready to learn, grow, and be challenged in all aspects and for them to embrace those challenges as necessary for their development.

LRT Sports: What are the do’s and don’ts of being recruited?

Coach Hampton-Keith: Do not email. We get THOUSANDS of emails, so no email is unique anymore. If they are interested call, come to campus to visit, and/ or come to camp.

LRT Sports: What is the best advice you can offer a recruit?

Coach Hampton-Keith: Be personal. Know whom you are contacting and why. Be prepared to discuss why our particular school is of interest to you.

LRT Sports: What really jumps out to you when reviewing a recruit’s highlight tape?

Coach Hampton-Keith: Within the first 30 seconds, we are going to assess if you can athletically help our gym get better.

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

Coach Hampton-Keith: Do NOT show serving. Put your most compelling footage in the first 30 seconds.

LRT Sports: 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 the season, or after each game?

Coach Hampton-Keith: No preference.

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

Coach Hampton-Keith: Have more than one “dream school.” There are SO MANY institutions out there that could be a great fit academically and athletically. It is best to explore all of those options and spend time researching so that you have ten dream schools as opposed to one.

LRT Sports: How significant a factor is social media when recruiting players? What advice do you have for athletes regarding social media?

Coach Hampton-Keith: Use social media wisely. It is a representation of who you are, so make sure that how you want to be perceived is how you are presenting yourself. A bad social media post will send the message that you may not fit with the vision of our program.

Updated: 8/5/19

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