The college athletics recruiting process is one that has been bound by region, financial budgets, and information shortages since it began in the mid-1900's. For example, a coach in California may never have heard of a rising football star from Alabama; and even if he did, may not have had the money or time to make a trip to the East coast to see the young man play. YouTube has benefitted the recruiting process in making highlight clips available to a global audience, and, perhaps most importantly, more easily accessible to college recruiters.
College coaches now have the ability to search for videos of their recruit whenever they please. YouTube has changed the way this information is shared. Rather than relying on word-of-mouth, coaches now have tangible evidence of a player's talent. By being able to see an athlete on video, the coach can decide if it's worth the time and expense to continue recruiting the player.
While YouTube is a great tool for coaches, it is arguably more beneficial for the athletes. YouTube is a free self-marketing tool that if used correctly can reach millions of viewers in just days. The "word-of-YouTube" travels fast, and can reach even the most important college coaches. Here's an example of a Texas football player, Sam McGuffie , who's highlight tape pulled in over 3 million views and ultimately served as a driving factor not only for his recruitment but even in a scholarship from the University of MIchigan.