5 Tips to Score a College Coaching Gig

Articles | Online Master of Coaching Education


Competition for coaching jobs at the college level is intense. What can you do to stay at the top of your game? You can follow our five favorite play calls:

#1 – Focus on the “Next Play”

Every job search comes with its inevitable highs and lows. In fact, a tough interview is a lot like a tough game. The key takeaway is to learn from it and move on. According to, Mike Krzyzewski, Duke University’s head basketball coach, the ‘next play’ philosophy says the most important play is the next one. Focus on your next application, your next networking event, and your next interview.

“If what you did yesterday still looks big today, you haven’t done much today.” – Coach K

#2 – Adjust Your Game Plan

In sports, you must be willing to adjust your game plan when the need arises. The same can be said for your job search. How willing are you to show flexibility in your approach? Do you keep using the same method over and over–or worse, the same resume? Being flexible and adapting to each individual situation – and each individual job listing – is essential to your success.

“When opportunity comes, it is too late to prepare.” – John Wooden

#3 – Update Your Playbook

The moment you stop learning is the moment you stop being effective. By broadening or deepening your skill set, you can quickly become a more desirable candidate. Plus, the curriculum in a coaching-related program – like Ohio University’s online Master’s in Coaching Education program – can help build your knowledge base on everything from physical conditioning and sports psychology to injury prevention and coaching leadership.

“No coach ever stops learning. That’s what makes the great coaches great.” – Tom Crean

#4 – Practice Post-Game Analysis

How many interviews have you scored? How did they go? Think about what you can change to help improve your game. Identify the interview questions on which you’ve stumbled. Take an honest stock of your application process and figure out what’s helping you, what’s hindering you, and what can be done to get you one step closer to your goal.

“Practice does not make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect.” – Vince Lombardi

#5 – Build Your Roster

Networking is one of the most important elements for getting hired in any industry. Why? Because people hire employees they know and trust. If you rely solely on job boards and cold calls, you’re in for one heck of a headache. Get out there; shake hands—as many as possible. Attend camps and clinics. Be genuine in your follow up with new contacts. Belonging to a network of coaches is one of the most important competitive advantages for your career.

“Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated.” – Lou Holtz

Did You Know?

The coaching profession is expected to experience double-digit growth over the next decade. Study with the pros at Ohio University, and learn how our online coaching degree can help give you an edge over the competition.


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