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The huddle

September 23, 2019

University of Pittsburgh Women’s Soccer Coach Randy Waldrum Gives Advice To Athletes

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Randy Jordan Waldrum is a former professional soccer head coach. He is now in his second season and working hard for the Pittsburgh women’s soccer program in 2019. Coach Waldrum is only the fourth head coach in Pitt women’s soccer program history.

Coach Waldrum Coaching Career

Austin College 1982, men’s soccer 4–12–1 record

Texas Wesleyan 1988, men’s soccer 6-10 record

University of Tulsa 1989 to 1994, men’s soccer 66-33-6

University of Tulsa 1989 to 1994, women’s soccer 61-36-9

Baylor University 1996 to 1998, women’s soccer 46-14-3 (founded the women’s soccer team)

Notre Dame 1999 to 2013, 15 seasons was 292-58-17

Coach Waldrum made his name at Notre Dame, where he led the team to two national championships, in 2004 and 201. He also has seven Final Fours in 14 seasons under his belt. Coach Waldrum offers some advice to those soccer athletes who are looking to play at the next level. 

LRT Sports: What qualities do you look for in recruits?  

Coach Waldrum: First and foremost I look at overall technical ability.  How comfortable are they with the ball. I need extremely skillful players to play the way we want to here.  Secondly, I look at the physical components, athleticism, etc. Lastly, I look at the psychological component…coachable, mentally tough, competitive, etc.

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

Coach Waldrum: The best way to get seen is to send us email with resume and video. This will initiate us seeing you at tournaments, with your club, etc.  Another way is simply playing on teams that are playing in the top events around the country, i.e. DA or ECNL teams which is where we recruit mostly from.

LRT Sports: How should high school athletes contact you?

Coach Waldrum: I prefer an email with all of one’s academic and athletic info on there, including some video if possible. This initiates everything for us.

LRT Sports: What is the best piece of advice that you can give recruits?

Coach Waldrum: Make sure to be realistic about the level one can play at. Investigate those schools which fit your level of play, and of course has the academics that one wants.

LRT Sports: When reviewing recruit’s highlight tapes, what jumps out to you?

Coach Waldrum: For me it is the technical ability of the player. Is she comfortable with the ball, can she solve problems that the game presents, does she see the field well.  

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

Coach Waldrum: Make sure that you indicate what color your team is, what number you are, and what position you play!  Sounds simple but we get many tapes where we have no idea who we are looking at. Have the highlight actually highlight you! Not interested in seeing you dribble through cones, or doing agility through a speed ladder, etc. Show highlights of your games with enough time before and after the actual highlight to see what was happening before and after the play.  

LRT Sports: When do you recommend recruits put together and share their highlight reels? 

Coach Waldrum: We should start getting them in one’s freshman and sophomore years.  

LRT Sports: Is it best to make their highlighted reel during offseason?

Coach Waldrum: Recruiting is happening early now, so I’d do so whenever one gets some video from tournament play or league games.   

In the middle of season, or after each game? 

Coach Waldrum: Don’t put things off until you have a ton of highlights, as coaches are evaluating starting freshman year.  

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 Waldrum: In life we don’t all get our dream job, same in recruiting. So understand that you can only control what you can control, meaning your own ability, effort, development, commitment, etc. So handle these things well and you’ll find a great fit in the end. What may not initially seem like your dream school, may end up being a great fit!

LRT Sports: When it comes to athlete’s social media, what do you look for that is either a do or a don’t?

Coach Waldrum: Don’t put things on there that you will regret. If it would embarrass your parents, it probably shouldn’t be there. Language can be an issue, politically incorrect views about things are not good things to discuss, discussions about your teammates or coaches are a red flag, etc. BE very CAREFUL as those few seconds of typing could cost you dearly in scholarship opportunities.

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

Coach Waldrum: My expectations are that we have a very high standard of the way we live our lives, conduct ourselves, and how we treat people. So my expectation is that your commitment to all these areas be top class, with maximum effort while conducting yourself in a respectful way.

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