We caught up with DeSales University Women’s Lacrosse Coach Rachel Smith for a discussion about the DeSales lacrosse program and what she looks for when recruiting student-athletes.

You can find our conversation below.

Thanks to Rachel for taking the time to educate those interested in DeSales!

DeSales will be in attendance at the D3 Fall Lacrosse Showcase on October 22nd. Click Here To Learn More and Register to the D3 Fall Lacrosse Showcase.

The Conversation

What are you most excited about with regards to your program?

New program so increasing our competitiveness every year

What jumps out at you when recruiting? What do you look for in a player?

Hustle, Lacrosse IQ, Athleticism, Technique, Are they a good teammate?

What are your “pet peeves” when recruiting?

Parents who scream at the refs, the coach and even their children, and when players give up on the play.

What is the best way interested student-athletes should get in touch with you?

Fill out our recruit questionnaire ( and email me at

What should student-athletes avoid in their messaging to college coaches?

Forgetting to change the coaches name, the school or not doing their research on the academic programs we offer.

How would you describe your coaching style?

I would describe my coaching style as challenging the girls to get better daily as individuals and as a unit but also to have fun playing the game they love!

Walk us through your timeline when recruiting a student athlete?

Since the Division I legislation has been put into place we are kind of following that Sept. 1st of the Junior Year guideline but love to have student-athletes reach out to us so we can know they are interested. Starting sophomore year or Junior year the student-athletes should set up a tour of campus or attend a camp or clinic to see if they enjoy the environment and our coaching style. We offer Prospect Day’s two-three times per year. We encourage girls to take their time in the process and make sure they see a lot of schools and choose the best fit for them based upon more than lacrosse! We like to have finished our class by December of their Senior year.

What kind of players succeed at your program?

This year will be the second year of our program and first incoming class of true recruits. We think their work ethic on and off the field will allow them to be very successful. We have a lot of healthcare majors so they have to learn pretty early on how to manage their time well.

What’s your recruiting strategy going into an event? After an event?

See the student-athletes who contacted me and find others who catch my eye as being someone that I could see fitting on the field in our program.

Tell us about your transition from lacrosse player to lacrosse coach.

I went to University of Florida and played on their inaugural team under Head Coach Mandee O’Leary. During my career, I became injured a lot which at the time was devastating. My senior year I was unable to play being granted a medical hardship; even though I was still apart of the program it was extremely difficult to be around the game. However, after graduating I realized it set me up to be a very knowledgable coach. From the sideline I was able to gain a different perspective of strategy and the x’s and o’s of the game. My first collegiate coaching position was at Stevenson University where I served as their graduate assistant. In this role I was able to really find my voice coaching and realize the type of coach I wanted to be. Now running my own start up program it was extremely beneficial to be a part of Florida so I could take from my experiences.

Once again, thanks to Rachel for her time, and best of luck to DeSales this season!

DeSales will be in attendance at the D3 Fall Lacrosse Showcase on October 22nd. Join Coach Smith & 40+ other college coaches at D3 Fall Showcase.
Coach Smith is one of the many coaches to recruit at our premier showcases. Click below to see the full list of coaches attending our events. Register today!


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