Ohio Wesleyan U.: Soccer Coach Jay Martin Offers Recruiting Advice

Jay Martin, the Head Men’s Soccer coach at Ohio Wesleyan University, has had astounding success in his 40 years as a college head coach.

Most notably, Martin is the winningest coach in college men’s soccer history with a total of 683 wins and an overall record of 683-134-66 (.814 win percentage) during the past 40 seasons at Ohio Wesleyan.

In 40 seasons, Martin has won 26 conference championships, appeared in nine NCAA Division III semifinals, and won two national championships (1998 and 2011). His teams have brought home 12 regional titles, including nine in the last 15 seasons and set a league record for most consecutive games unbeaten (40 games). Ohio Wesleyan set the NCAA Division III record with 39 playoff appearances and 62 playoff victories.

Coach Martin has been the NCAA Regional Coach of the Year 16 times in his 39 years at Ohio Wesleyan and was named NSCAA National Coach of the Year three times. Martin has also received the Ohio Collegiate Soccer Association’s Honor Award and the National Soccer Coaches Association of America’s Honor Award in 2007.

Along with this, Martin also coached lacrosse at the college level, and won four Midwest Lacrosse Association titles, earning 6 NCAA playoff bids and was named the MLA Coach of the Year. Overall, in both sports, in 48 seasons, Martin has produced 60 All-American and 207 All-Mideast or All-Midwest players.

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

Recruiting is a layered process. First, we are looking for someone who can play at our level. That is only step one. We then must ensure that he is academically suitable for Ohio Wesleyan University. Finally, we talk to coaches, friends etc. to determine the character of the player. We want the whole package.

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

An email with a video is a good place to start. Coaches are busy. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t hear back immediately. Try again.

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

Late in the sophomore year or early in the junior year. We want to make sure we see him play in-person at some point.

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

We don’t have many rules. In fact we don’t have any. We expect the player to act first class on the field and off. I think that is self explanatory. If you skip a class, you don’t train. If you don’t train, you miss the next game.

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

We want you to be persistent. We want you to address the email to me and not another coach. We want to see a full game not a highlight video. We want you to visit campus.

What is the best advice you can offer a recruit?

You must accurately assess your abilities and find a college with the same playing level. All high school seniors want to play DI. Not all are suited for that.

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

Work ethic, body language, defending, doing the “little things” that make a great player, and off the ball movement.

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

We prefer to see a full game. I can make a highlight tape of me and I am terrible!!

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?

That is up to the player. We would like to see a video from the junior year (and even sophomore year) and then early in the senior year. Was there improvement?

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?

There are many, many soccer playing schools out there. Evaluate yourself and create a pool of possible schools to attend. Always have a Plan B.

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

We do check social media. Advice? Don’t do anything stupid.

Image courtesy of: NCAA.org

* Originally published on July 10, 2017, by LRT Staff

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