Recruitment Q & A with Micky Thompson
SILVERTON, Ore. – Walking through the recruitment process can be a seemingly daunting task, filled with plenty of uncertainty. Baseball Northwest (BBNW) understands that many questions can arise during the process, and so we reached out to a handful of athletes—from all levels of collegiate baseball—and asked them to elaborate on their own experiences in the recruiting process.
Understanding that no two athletes or journeys are the same, the hope is to provide prospective collegiate athletes with a clearer picture of what to expect through the experiences and advice of those who have already walked through the process of finding a home at the next level.
The first of these athletes is Micky Thompson, who hails from Portland, Ore. Thompson currently competes for Washington State University, joining the Cougs after a standout career as a southpaw ace at Century High School.
We reached out to Thompson with a number of questions regarding his journey through the recruiting process, with his responses listed below.
BBNW: What made you nervous about starting the recruiting process?
Thompson: Starting my recruiting process freshman year, I didn’t really know where to go. I had no knowledge of the recruiting process, which made it tough for me. I knew for a fact that I wanted to continue to play in college, however.
BBNW: How old were you when you decided you wanted to play baseball in college or beyond?
Thompson: I was serious about playing baseball since I was in the fifth or sixth grade, but I truly didn’t know playing in college was a possibility until the eighth grade. That’s when I truly had the passion to continue to play this game for a long time.
BBNW: What is your favorite baseball memory to date?
Thompson: My favorite memory so far playing baseball has got to be making the Area Code team and being able to play in Long Beach. It was such a surreal experience that I’m blessed I got to be a part of.
BBNW: What’s the best advice you were given during the recruiting process?
Thompson: Find a place and a program that fits you, not only as a player, but also as a person. You are a full-time athlete, but you also have a social life. Pick a place that you would love for the community as well.
BBNW: What is something you wish you knew before starting the recruiting process?
Thompson: You don’t have to commit right away! Take your time and weigh out your options. It’s exciting starting the recruiting process and getting looks from multiple colleges. Just know, you don’t have to commit to your first offer!
BBNW: What is some advice you would give to other players regarding the recruiting process?
Thompson: When it comes to getting looks from colleges, coaches are looking for more than just your skills. They are also looking at your personal makeup. What I mean is this: if you hit .800 with 30 homeruns in a season but you are not a good teammate, pout whenever things don’t go your way, or even talk back to coaches, colleges that were previously interested in you will quickly go away.
BBNW: What is a misconception people have about recruiting that you would clear up?
Thompson: Paying hundreds or thousands of dollars on recruiting apps isn’t necessary, in my opinion. Places like Baseball Northwest offer a prime opportunity to get your name out there. If you perform, coaches will come.
BBNW: How old were you when you were first asked to call a college coach who was interested in you as a player?
Thompson: I was in the summer prior to my freshman year when I got my first look from a college coach. A bulk of my interests came during the summer after my freshman year.
BBNW: What were some things that were important to you when deciding where to attend college?
Thompson: To me it was important that I fit into the culture of the program. My current coach Brian Green at Washington State made me even more aware this year about how important culture is in a program. When looking at a college, if you see everyone pushing each other to be better, that’s a lot better environment to be in compared to a lot of individuals thinking of themselves.
BBNW: How was the recruiting process different than how you expected it to be?
Thompson: To me, I was surprised at the realness of the statement ‘If you perform, scouts will come.’ I am a firm believer that if you work hard in the offseason to become a better player, results on the field will come.
BBNW: What were some things you enjoyed about your recruiting process?
Thompson: I was blessed to have met some amazing people in awesome communities. It was also cool to see that coaches were interested in who I was as a person, and not just as a player.
BBNW: What role did your parents play in the process?
Thompson: My parents were awesome in the fact that they gave me the full decision as to where I wanted to go. They never forced me to go to one place or another, and supported me fully when I decided to change schools.
BBNW: What is something you would caution players from saying to a coach during recruitment?
Thompson: Don’t mention scholarships or money until they bring up that possibility. It is a HUGE opportunity to be on a scholarship, so don’t make it seem like you are expecting to get one handed to you!
BBNW: Were there any important people/mentors who really helped you in the process?
Thompson: To be honest, I really went through a lot of the recruiting process on my own. But my high school coach was a huge advocate for me, and Baseball Northwest was the main showcase where I really got my name out there!
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