Detroit Stories Episode 73: 'The 'Wild West' of College Sports Recruiting' (PODCAST)

Student-athletes, coaches and ADs offer advice for navigating a complex process amidst a changing landscape for recruits

(0:02) Sonny Wilson, a freshman on the University of Toledo’s basketball team, reflects on his recruitment in high school as a standout on the University of Detroit Jesuit High School’s squad. He offers advice for other young players going through the process.

(3:51) The narrator talks about some of the ways in which high school and college sports recruiting has changed, including video highlight reels, transfer portals and NIL ("name, image and likeness") deals before introducing several interviewees.

(5:55) Dan Rohn, football coach and athletic director at De La Salle High School in Warren, laments the decline in multi-sport athletes at the high school level, which he believes can be attributed to increased pressure placed on athletes who have hopes of playing at the next level. Vic Michaels, director of the Catholic High School League, offers his thoughts on the subject.

(9:19) Mike Watson, athletic director at Marian High School, talks about the impact of video — especially social media — on recruiting. Ava Brizard, a Marian graduate and standout volleyball player for North Carolina State University, talks about how video gave her increased opportunities to stand out.

(14:30) Interviewees discuss the timing of the recruiting process, which begins as early as seventh grade for some athletes. In addition to those above, we hear from Brady Drogash, a De La Salle graduate and quarterback on the University of Cincinnati’s football team; Xavier Thomas, a Brother Rice graduate and University of Toledo basketball player; and Dalton Drogash, a junior on De La Salle’s football squad.

(20:23) Athletes and coaches discuss preparing for the recruiting process, negotiations with interested schools, and how high school coaches and athletic directors can help students and their families navigate the process.

(24:35) Interviewees discuss tips for finding and deciding on the right school, and the factors athletes and their families should consider in making their decisions.

(30:00) Rohn, Watson and Michaels discuss the impact of NIL deals on the recruiting landscape.

(32:49) Athletes offer their advice for other students going through the recruiting process, including pitfalls to watch out for, who to turn to for advice, and how to make the best impression possible.

Reporting by Daniel Meloy; narration by Emily Mentock; script by Casey McCorry; production by Ron Pangborn

This episode of Detroit Stories is proudly sponsored by Catholic Charities of Southeast Michigan – the charitable arm of the Archdiocese of Detroit. Engage in the practice of the corporal works of mercy within your community! To begin your journey of involvement and compassion, visit today and select 'Get Involved'!

Listen to ‘Detroit Stories’ on Apple Podcasts, YouTube or Spotify. Podcasts also will be posted biweekly on


AOD-CSA: June Article Bottom