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What Do Collegiate Coaches Look For in High School Prospects?

There are many qualities and skills college coaches look for when searching for high school athletes to join their team. According to Mercer Head Football Coach Bobby Lamb, scouts for Mercer follow a four-point evaluation when looking for prospects. 



 Lamb says first they look at an athlete’s academic success. They evaluate transcripts and test scores to ensure they meet Mercer’s academic standards. According to Mercer University’s website the average SAT Score for a first-year student was 1280 in the Fall of 2019. The average first-year student scored a 27 on their ACT and maintained a 3.94 academic grade point average prior to admission. 


Second thing Mercer scouts look for in high school athletes is athletic ability. They watch video footage of top plays. You may also see them watching practices or at the games of potential Mercer players. 


Coach Lamb says they love to have a team full of leaders. He explains the way to build that type of team is to see if the prospective athlete is or has served in a leadership role. He says they talk to coaches and teachers to find out about the prospect’s leadership qualities. They also find out if the athlete was president of a school club or captain of an athletic team. 


Mercer University’s website says, “We welcome students who want to grow in an environment that teaches, inspires and empowers them to make the world a better place.” Based on this motto, It’s no surprise that the college’s football program evaluates their players character before they can become a part of the team. In fact, Coach Lamb says the most important part of their four-point evaluation is the character evaluation portion. He says, “We want to have men of high character representing our university, so we are trained to find out about their individual characters as much as possible.” Scouts for the school interview guidance counselors, coaches, teachers and mentors. 

 Coach Lamb says if an athlete passes all four points of the evaluation, they are given an offer to become a Mercer Bear.