Today is Black Friday, a big event for retailers. While shoppers are out in droves across the country’s malls and stores today, there will be a different kind of shopping that begins next week.

About half of all FBS schools will wrap their seasons this weekend, bringing careers to an end for hundreds of seniors. Many of those seniors will have NFL dreams, and though not all of them are realistic, it won’t stop plenty of players from seeking representation. Given that the modern player sees hiring an agent as his first step to playing pro football, many athletes will be cold-calling local agents, pushing to be signed and, just maybe, trained on the agent’s dime.

If there’s one thing that comes as a revelation to new agents, it’s this phenomenon. Most newly certified agents, when they get to November, are still trying to figure things out. How do I find good players? How do I reach out to good players? How do I reach out to good players without getting myself in trouble? In the midst of asking themselves all these questions, they start getting phone calls from players, many with semi-impressive resumes and/or well-rehearsed stories. It’s mighty tempting for a new contract advisor to sign such players. After all, it’s exciting to get a player on an SRA. It feels like victory! It’s a landmark and an indication that an exciting new career is under way.

Only, it’s not that simple. Time is a valuable resource, and most of these players are the longest of shots. When you commit to representing (and promoting, and pitching, and maybe even training for a substantial fee) a player, there’s a certain amount of risk involved. It may or may not involve a significant amount of money, but it definitely will involve your blood, sweat and tears. This is why it’s so important, as a new agent, to know what you’re looking for, and to have a detailed plan for the players you train.

If you aspire to be an agent someday, be aware of what’s ahead this week (and the rest of the month, especially) and prepare for its eventuality. If you’re a new agent now, consider giving us a call. We can help you evaluate the players calling this month and help you decide on a plan of attack.

Happy Thanksgiving weekend!