A Guide for New HD Coaches Topic

With all the new players we have joining with this promo and how many questions we keep getting about how to recruit and/or what is a good player. And for those that don’t feel like they can talk on the forums I thought I’d write a quick short informative article on recruiting. For those new reading, some of this is personal opinion of me (I will try and remember to note that when I say it). For all the other Vets out there feel free to add anything to help out these new players, hopefully we can get a handful of them to stick around and even help out some that move up to d2 quickly because of the new relaxed promotion code.

Very Important!: www.wisjournal.com AND www.whatif.cincinnati.com

At the beginning of each season all the recruits for the next season are generated. This means you can look through them, add players to your watch list that fit your system.

(The recruiting Watch list has NO effect on prospective players, this is only for your benefit)

You can order these recruits by ‘High’ ‘Medium’ and ‘low’ or leave them at nothing at all. This is a good way to build a small (or big) list of players to keep your eye on. Also if you find an ineligible player that you’re interested in by adding them to your watch list you will get periodic updates as to whether or not they have reached the scores they need to become eligible to play for your team if you recruit them.

(Note: At D3 all players are eligible as long as they have a 2.0 gpa or higher, disregard the “Ineligible” at the top of their profile)

There isn’t anything more you can do inseason recruiting wise other then look for prospective players and build your recruiting watch list.

After the Post Season finishes:
A few things happen here. First off (most of the time) your prestige changes, whether this means up or down it effects who you will be able to recruit right away. You’ll notice that whenyou search “All D3 recruits” With (lets say) your C- prestige inseason and thendo the same with your C+ prestige after the season is over you will have more, usually better recruits available to you. So take a chance to rescan recruits and see if there is anyone new. (The “better” recruits may or may not be on the top of your list because they might have a lower “overall” score but have better “cores”)

Also players transfer. Players can transfer from a school due to a lack of playing time and/or due to a coach breaking a promise to that player. These players are available right after the conclusion of the NT and can be viewed then and added to your watch list.

Another good thing to do is to search up 1 division within 100 miles. Any player that is within 70 miles may take your recruiting effort if they normally wouldn’t because they are “local” to your school. So send these guys (If there are any you might want on your team) a phone call in cycle 1. You can judge by their response whether or not they are willing to be recruited by you or if it’s a lost cause.

3/6/2008 6:56 PM
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3/6/2008 6:56 PM
In Division 3 it is advised that you stay fairly close to home, there are exceptions of course but when you first start out it is key to bring in a solid class and the easiest way to not mess-up is to stay close to home (I’d say within 500 miles, although the closer the better)

Here are the changes in Cost for local and semi-local recruiting:

Scouting Trip$152$188$265$296$531
Home Visit$302$338$415$446$748
Campus Visit$801$823$1025$1044$1264

The Different Types of Recruiting Methods:

TypeWhat It Does
Watch ListAdds a player to your ‘Watch List’ No recruiting value
Call RecruitCalls the recruit. Minimal recruiting value, Good to see if you are a ‘backup option’ or if you’re good to go to recruit. Note: Too many can annoy a recruit
Send MaterialsSends player materials on your school, pretty much the same as a phone call.
Call CoachCalls players coach. You may receive information on what Offense and Defense the player played in High School and how well they know it. Minimal (if any) recruiting value.
Scouting TripYou Scout the player during one of his games. You get feedback on the player’s skills and possibly what Offense and/or Defense they play and/or how good they know it. Can not be refused by the player. Great way to get a player to begin to accept HV or CV. Decent recruiting Value.
Home VisitYou go to a player’s house to visit them. Can be denied by recruit. May or May not receive the money that would have been spent on it back. Good Recruiting Value
Campus VisitYou bring a player to your campus to show them around. Can be refused by Recruit, may or may not get monies back. Maximum recruiting value.
Guaranteed Minutes/StartYou let the player know that you plan on playing them. Be sure you can meet these promise before you give them out. Players can transfer if you don’t live up to them. Solid recruiting Value.
Psyc Opinion/Personality TestWere used for Dilemmas that are now not in the engine. Not refuse able by recruit, some coach’s say it works to help getting a player to take HV/CV. I have not used them.
Inform of RedshirtTelling a player you plan on redshirting them. Although not needed to redshirt a player if you inform them and you sign them they will take a redshirt no matter what. Usually Negative recruiting value.
Offer ScholarshipOffering one of your open ‘ships to a potential recruit. In my opinion if you really want a guy its best to offer the ‘ship right away. Solid recruiting value.
Booster GiftsIllegal way of recruiting (Can’t be used at DIII). Very High Risk, potentially High Reward?? I have never used them but I believe that most people that do use them don’t get away with them. If caught Harmful to your reputation and your program may not be allowed to play in the postseason and/or lose ‘ships.
3/6/2008 6:56 PM
Note: Promises are only for a players Freshmen year.


Walk-ons are not the end of the world. Unlike in GD, where you are stuck with the player for 4 years, walk-ons do not automatically get a scholarship. They are on your roster for 1 year, and when that year is over they leave. Giving you another 'ship AND monies to recruit for it. So taking a walk-on or two is a great way to balance out classes and have some extra money available. Also, Its adviced to take a walk-on over a scrubby player who will sit on your bench for 4 years.

Note: Taking more then 2 walk-ons gives your team a pracitce penalty, your players won't improve as fast as normal. So try to keep it at 2 walk-ons at the most! Or if you get in a bind, give your best walk-on a 'ship or just deal with the Penalty.


Drop Downs:

Players that fall a division level during recruiting. IE they start on your d2 list but end up on your d3 list and d3 schools are allowed to recruit them.

Pull Downs:

Players that are always on a higher division list and are "pulled" down to your level without ever showing up on that screen. Usually consider you and only you and then sign.



These are the definitions of each category per admin in a Dev chat. Figured I'd throw them in here to make them more easily accesible.

Athleticism (ath): refers to physical skills/strength. In HD, athleticism is used on both sides of the ball. On offense, it plays a role in rebounding, positioning inside and how players finish around the basket. On defense, it plays a role in defensive positioning (especially inside), rebounding and shot blocking.

Speed (spd): refers to a player's quickness. Like athleticism, speed is important on both sides of the ball and the importance of which varies by position on the court, e.g. it's much more important for guards to be quick than for post players. On offense, speed is important for perimeter players to effectively be able to get to the basket. On defense, quickness is vital for overall defense, especially against guards and forwards but can benefit big men by giving them the ability to cause turnovers and it helps with shot blocking.

Rebounding (reb): refers to a player's rebounding fundamentals and his desire to rebound. Very few ratings stand alone - rebounding is an example of that - I may have a high rebounding rating which may make me a good rebounder but if I'm not also a good athlete, I'll never be a great rebounder.

Defense (def): like rebounding, defense refers to a player's defensive fundamentals and their desire to play defense. Again, knowledge of the fundamentals and having the desire are great, but you also need the athleticism and speed to be a great defender.

Shot Block (blk): refers to a player's understanding of timing and positioning when blocking shots.

Low Post (lp): refers to a player's ability to score inside the paint. Currently only applies to SF, PF and C positions on the floor.
Perimeter (pe): refers to a player's outside shooting ability. Applies to all positions on the floor with this skill carrying more weight for perimeter players (PG, SG, SF) but also plays a role for post players. The ability to score both inside and outside makes any player more difficult to stop. For example, I'd prefer a PF with 80 low post and 30 perimeter over a PF with 93 low post and 2 perimeter.

Passing (p): refers to a player's ability to know when and where to deliver the ball to their teammates. Applies to all positions on the floor but carries more weight as you move away from the basket.

Ballhandling (bh): refers to a player's ability take care of the ball. Like passing, applies to all positions on the floor but carries more weight as you move away from the basket. Ballhandling is important for players you want to be "slashers".

Work Ethic (we): work ethic impacts how hard a player works to improve.

Stamina (st): stamina refers to a player's endurance. The higher his stamina, the longer he can player without diminished skills.

Durability (du): refers to how a player deals with injuries - the higher a player's durability, the less likely they are to sustain a severe injury and when they do get injured, how quickly they'll be able to return.

This should be a good start to those recruiting for a first time, maybe even some players who have just not gotten it yet and moved up to D2 with the new promotion code (code as in computer code, not FreeHD!). I’m sure I forgot something that I will add to this when It comes to mind. For now, I think this will suit. Hopefully I’ll be able to get some more solid info up soon.

As Always feel free to sitemail me questions!
3/6/2008 6:57 PM

At DII and DI these players are not eligible for their Freshmen season, meaning they do not play nor do they practice. Put all Practice minutes into Study Hall (Really it does matter).

These players have a chance of being eligible for a 5th year of eligibility. At DII they need a 2.0 gpa to be offered a 5th year (They do NOT have to stay for 5) at DI they need a 2.7 gpa or higher to be offered this extra year.

Also ineligibles may or may not actually report to your team. If you sign them during recruiting there is still a chance that they might go JuCo. If this happens you will receive an email shortly after the CI top 32 Recruiting Classes mail. Then the next season you will have a small built up recruiting advantage for these players, sometimes they will even begin the recruiting period considering you.

Note: Once again all players are eligible at DIII.
3/6/2008 6:57 PM
This link thanks to dacj501


This has example messages of how to decide what type of high your guys potential is.

Example messages from Recruits:
(Sorry all I have right now is D1 messages, They still do justice as examples)

Example Scouting Trip:

Coach, just flew back from my evaluation visit of David Stucker.
...and boy are my arms tired - jk.
Anyway, knowing what I know about DI basketball, here were some of the observations I jotted down as I watched him play:

- Below average defender.
- Tends to stay out of traffic.
- Pretty good shape.

Looks like the team primarily plays runs a motion offense. Based on their sets, he seemed like he knew where to be while running motion, but there were a couple of times he was out of position.

Overall, I think he's best suited for mid to mid-major school.

Robert Johnson
Head Assistant Coach
Florida Int.

As you can see above, in the italics are the ‘player eval’ then underneath that is the offense he ran in HS and his knowledge of it. You will never get “This player is a C in IQ of Motion”, Its always vague. I would say this player is a C-ish player.

Under that It will tell you what level he is best suited for. It really doesn’t mean much unless it says that the other coaches there are way out of your league.

Sample Coach Call:

Hey Coach, thanks for the call to chat about Toni Zoltek. We've had a couple of conversations about his college choice and Florida Int. isn't a common subject.

Defensively, we primarily play halfcourt press/zone. I'd say he is above average in our zone sets and average in the press.

You can see I only got the Defense for this player. It gives me his Vague IQ status again. At the start it tells me that I’m “Not a common subject” This player is recruitable for me, but I’m nowhere near winning him.

Sample Player Call:


Thanks for the call coach. I'm a little busy right now, but I am interested in Florida Int. and would like to talk to you again before I make my final decision.

Eric Frase

I called Burt Patton 10 times, 4 messages, before he finally called me back. He's pretty sure that he's going to get an offer from a 'big time program' but we are an option for him if that falls through.

In message 1 you can see this player is again recruitable (is this a word? MS Word doesn’t think so), but I’m not winning. In message 2 you see that I’m a ‘back-up’ option if this player doesn’t get the ‘love’ from the bigger programs. If he ever becomes recruitable for me he will send me a message saying so.
9/23/2011 10:44 AM (edited)
Please let me know what I may have forgot... I'm sure there is something somewhere...

Here is some info on Redshirting I posted a while back.

Additional Redshirting Thoughts:

First off it takes 1 recruiting cycle to see the results of your potential redshirt. (ie whenever a cycle would sim, you’ll get your response even if you throw it on 1 minute before said cycle)

Using the Redshirt button during recruiting is the only “For sure way” to make sure a recruit you want to redshirt will in fact accept the redshirt. What I have posted before is just a pattern I have noticed and something you can use to possibly not have to use the button. Again It is not 100% guaranteed.

Another way to get a possible recruit to redshirt is to put them on mop-up and leave them off your Depth Chart for the exhibition schedule. You can also keep taking the redshirt on and off the player may entice him to take it, or it could result in an even bigger Work Ethic drop.

It is possible to redshirt a player you promised minutes to as I have noted in the above link.Although its not guaranteed and really doesn’t make too much sense.
3/6/2008 6:59 PM
Call Recruit

Calls the recruit. Minimal recruiting value, Good to see if you are a ‘backup option’ or if you’re good to go to recruit. Note: Too many can annoy a recruit

Really? The only time they get ****** is if they accept the call and don't respond that I've noticed. Those are lost causes so if you keep calling they will get all pissy in a responce. Other then that if your a back up or whatever I send out over 100+ phone calls to every recruit and they don't go from "back up" to "stop calling" Ever - for me at least.

Nice post though. I agree with most other then the stamina for a player. I feel thats only useful in fast break/press sets or if you are not a deep team.
3/6/2008 7:04 PM
Yeah Furry it use to be that way at least that too many calls can annoy a recruit. I had it happen before, one insident that I can remember was with a player, Aaron Davis, on my Le Moyne squad. I ended up recruiting Him. But he did get upset with the massive ammounts of calls i kept giving him.
3/6/2008 7:06 PM
Ah. I always send out over 50 phone calls per recruit and never had one get ****** unless they were negative at first and I avoid those players anyway.
3/6/2008 7:09 PM
Practice Plans:

Practice plans are the second most important thing in developing talent for your team (behind recruiting of course and, in my opinion, followed by getting your young guys a little playing time). Each player has 130 minutes of practice time. Each player has an Individual Practice Time of 130 – Team practice Minutes.

Team Practice:

For team practice you decide how much you want to improve your players IQs. The normal is 20 minutes in each Offense and Defense. It is highly recommended to only have one of each (although combo D’s are available at the lower levels players have to much individual improvement that its advised to only run one). Although it is your team so if you want to try having 2 different O’s go for it.

Some coaches change Team practice minutes based on how young/old their team is. With very large (possibly superclass size) freshmen and sophomore classes I advice to bump up the O/D at least a couple points. I usually run my D (I play mostly press where IQ is more important to cut back on excessive fouling) practice at 25 minutes and my O practice at 20. If you have a very big Junior/Senior class you could even possibly choose to cut out team practice altogether. IQ levels do not go down even if they are not being practiced.

Individual Practice:

Here is what each practice category increases:

Practice CategoryImproves
Conditioning (C)Stamina, Athleticism, Speed, Shot Blocking, Durability
Footwork (FW)Defense, Shot Blocking, Low Post
Passing (P)Passing
Low Post (LP)Low Post
Perimeter (PE)Perimeter Shots (both mid-range and 3-pointers)
Dribbling (BH)Ball Handling
Free Throw Shooting (FT)Free Throw Grade
Rebounding (REB)Rebounding
Study Hall (SH)GPA

Note: The point of diminishing returns is around 25 practice minutes in a single category. So anything over 25 will give you less then 1 minutes practice. It is ok to put more then 25 into a category, and is sometimes even the best thing to do.

Note: Players ratings are considered “Un-improvable” if less than 20 and over 90. The rate of improvement is very slow so it is usually advised to put nothing into categories under 20 and at least 7 (7 is used to maintain a rating where it is at with no decrease) into anything 90 and above, assuming you have other improvable ratings where the minutes can be used more effectively.

Free Throw Practice:

Once upon a time in HD you could get any player to an A in FT shooting, about a year ago WIS decided to take that strategy away from us coaches. Now a player will improve only 4% (On average, although that is pretty much the norm) over their ENTIRE career. (They did this because apparently the average improvement they did in a study of 1000 D1 players was 4%, I disagree and even found different results) In otherwords, maybe 2/3 of a letter grade is all your going to be able to get. (Depending on WE a little). So now i practice FTs at 12 minutes (12 is used to keep players from decreasing, I wouldn't go any lower then 12 as FT% decreases MUCH faster then it improves) for all of my players regardless of how good or bad they are. FTs is also now something I recruit for.

Also very important, You don’t want your players getting bad grades or they won’t be able to play and you’ll take a rep hit!

This is usually what I use when setting players SH minutes at the start of a season:

Freshmen: 7-10 depending on HS GPA
Sophomore: I usually start them at what they ended with Fr. Year.
Junior: 3-7 depending on Cum. GPA
Senior: 1-5 depending on Cum. GPA.

Note: Treat a Redshirted Freshmen as a regular Fr.

Note: There are 2 mid-terms and 2 final-grades. This gives you an opportunity to change your SH minutes if your players are in trouble of failing. Once you get your 2nd set of Final Grades. You can take all SH minutes away from players and put them into other categories.

Note: If a player becomes ineligible during the season he will still practice with your team, he is just not allowed to play. So Do NOT move all his minutes over to Study Hall, just enough to get him eligiable (Which could be anywhere from 10 to anything depending on his year and his gpa).

Offseason Improvements:

These are random, based off a players Work Ethic. Meaning a player with a higher WE has a better chance of gaining more in the offseason. A player that has a lower WE has a lesser chance. Usually a player with under 30 WE losses points in SPD/STA/DUR in the offseason.
3/6/2008 7:20 PM
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3/6/2008 7:20 PM
Team Game Plan:

In the team game plan page you set your offense to run, the tempo to run that offense at And the defense to run and what positioning.


There are 4 offenses, Flex, Motion, Triangle and Fastbreak. I’ll refer you to ahausla’s thread on the “Compendium of HD Offenses”

Next we’ll move on to tempo. Tempo means only one thing, how much time your team will run off the clock before they take the shot. It in no way effects how good or bad the shot taken will be. Again if you run uptempo all that changes in the engine is less time comes off the clock each possession then if you were running normal or slowdown. This does indirectly effect fatigue, more possessions equals more fatigue, but running uptempo in and of itself does not wear out another team. It is mostly considered that If you are playing a team you are better then run uptempo, if you are playing a team that is better then you you have a better chance to win by running slowdown.

Note: I, personally, run uptempo with my press teams because I feel the extra possessions give my team an added advantage of having more chances to make the steal and the easy bucket.


There are seven different D’s. Here I’ll quickly go over them.

Man to Man: Basic Man to Man D. A player matches up against a single player. Defense rating is most important in this defensive set. (I’ll throw out there 40-50ish as a solid number for a d3 player) Covered under the Man to Man IQ.

Zone (2-3 and 3-2):

Both are covered under the Zone IQ. 2-3 zone has 2 players guarding the perimeter and 3 players guarding the baseline. A 3-2 is the opposite, 3 in the perimeter and 2 on the baseline. Rebounding is big in a zone. If you run it you need to make sure you have a solid sf with good rebounding. If you run a 3-2 you need to have two VERY good rebounders inside. Any additional rebounding in your guards is a great bonus. Players D ratings are averaged in this D. So you can ‘hide’ a bad defender.

Fullcourt Press:

Covered under the Press IQ. You press the ball for the 1st half of the court and trap for the 2nd half. Speed and athleticism are big, the higher a players D rating the more steals they will have. Stamina is big in this D too as your players are continually running.

Half-court Press/Man to Man:

Covered under the Press and Man to Man IQs. Harder to have good IQs as you tend to be average in two rather then great in one. Need good Speed and Athleticism along with high Defense ratings.

Half-court Press/Zone:

Covered under the Press and Zone IQs. Again, Harder to have good IQs as you tend to be average in two rather then great in one. D is slightly less important then in HCP/M2M. Speed and Athleticism are Huge again.


This is where you tell your team what you would like them to take away. If you set your positioning to a + setting you will push into the perimeter in effect pressuring the ball more and taking away the outside shot. The higher you go into the numbers the more you guard the perimeter. On the otherside is the – setting, you pack into the interior and take away the inside shot, leaving the outside open. Obviously the faster your team the quicker your players can recover. 0 is ‘balanced’ where you don’t focus on either the interior or the perimeter.

Note: The more – you go the more fouls you will have.

Note: You are also given the opportunity to allow the Sim to change your positioning at half. You have a few options. Whenever your team is down 5 or 10 and Always or Never. The sim will never change you more then 2 points up or down. This is a personal preference thing. Personally I feel I am smarter then the Sim so I have mine set at ‘Never’.

Late Game Tactics:

Here you can set what you would like your team to do when winning late or losing late on either O or D. It uses the same principles as above. The only difference here is you can change your teams 3 point frequency on O by the team. So if you’re losing late and would like your team to launch 3s to try to get into the game then set it + or – for not doing so

Note: When changing your O or D sets for your team, make sure to change them here also!

Note: At the bottom of the page are options to give or not give backups time based on if the game is out of reach. If you have promise to freshmen players this can hamper you from meeting them. So beware of that when choosing whether to choose either of them.
3/6/2008 7:21 PM
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3/6/2008 7:22 PM

Quickly going to touch on FSS, It will be brief.

FSS is the scouting system that WIS instituted as the 'New' Potential. There are many opinions on it and the biggest drawback being that it really has taken a lot away from being able to develop your players as you feel fit via your practice plan and has shifted that into recruiting (ie if you want to develop a high PER sf you need to recruit one with either an already high per rating or one that has good potential as opposed from just giving him 20 minutes in PER and seeing it improve around 8-10 points in a season (which was how it worked in the old system))

You have to purchase states via the FSS system to get the info on each player's potential and states vary in price based on the number of recruits the said state.

The biggest benefit of FSS, imo, is the 'Word on the Street' Info that you get twice daily (approx 2 am/pm est). This tells you where said recruit is leaning and/or how big of a target said player is for said team
3/6/2008 8:05 PM
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