Lanett hosts college recruiting seminar for Valley area student-athletes

Published 11:03 pm Wednesday, January 16, 2019

LANETT — Every year, thousands of high school student-athletes balance the trio of academics, athletics and social life. The problem that most face upon graduation, however, is what they’re going to do next in life.

On Wednesday night inside the Lanett High School Auditorium, athletic director Clifford Story, Jr. opened up the school’s door to student-athletes and their families to learn about how to get recruited.

Next College Student-Athlete (NCSA) Director of Regional Recruiting Ron Sigler was the main speaker of the night, giving his presentation on the importance of test scores, grades, paperwork and having an online portfolio to increase chances of landing an athletic scholarship.

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“I think it was awesome,” Sigler said. “I want to thank Coach Story and the administration for having me out. They did a great job putting the event out, getting some good publicity. The event actually started earlier today, and they let every student-athlete in the school get out of class and get some information.”

Student-athletes from Lanett, Valley, LaFayette and Opelika Middle School were represented to absorb the information.

“I wanted to be more informed of the recruiting,” Danny Williams, the father of LaFayette junior athlete Jordan Walker, said. “I wanted to get the information of what we need in order to get the kids in school, and what the college requires.”

Walker is currently drawing interest from SEC schools Missouri and Auburn as a defensive back. He was recently named to the All-State and All-Valley football teams.

Sigler repeatedly emphasized the importance of getting a scholarship, calling it a “$200k investment.” He advised the students to not have C’s on their transcripts, to take their ACT and SAT tests during the spring semester of their sophomore year if possible to get a 21 on the ACT or 1020 on the SAT, and to register with the eligibility center. If the athletes don’t have an NCAA ID number, then they wouldn’t even be allowed to make official visits to schools.

Social media was also something that Sigler told the students was important. He said that if an athlete wanted to be on a school’s radar, they should follow the position coach at that school on Twitter using an account with their real name.

While there was representation from multiple schools at the session, Coach Story said that he would have preferred to see more of a variety of different faces in the crowd.

“To be honest, I was expecting more people in the community to come, because we’ve never had this here,” Story said. “Those who were here were invested in the future of their kid’s athletics and getting to the next level. I am appreciative of how the turnout was.”

The parents and athletes who were at the event shared their gratitude with both Lanett and Sigler after.

“I tell them thank you,” Calvin Atkinson, father of Valley freshman Markavious Atkinson, said. “I was expecting the entire auditorium to be full because they reached out to all of these schools right here, not just Lanett, but Coach Story reached out to all of the schools around here. I thank him for that, and brother Sigler didn’t have to come to enlighten us on what it takes to get to the next level, but he wanted to help. By him coming to give us an insight into what we need to do to get to the next level means a lot. I thank him for that.”

Sigler left his contact information for the attendees to keep in touch with him or ask any follow-up questions. His email is