Posted: 03/15/2017 12:11PM EDT
Troy, Mich. – The RecruitUS Team raised approximately $3,000 on Sunday, March 5 at the RecruitUS LLC Launch Fundraiser at Bowl One Lanes in Troy, Mich.
The event served as the official kickoff to Michigan’s newest sporting firm, which assists high school athletes in the collegiate recruiting process with a strong focus on lesser profiled sports and affordability. Roughly $300 was donated to the Boys & Girls Club of Troy, the official charity of RecruitUS LLC.
The night was filled with activities as friends, family, and potential business partners of the RecruitUS Team were in attendance. Festivities began with a company greeting speech where co-founders Kenneth DeGraaf (President), Cole Paczas (Vice President), and Andrew Alisa (Chief Technology Officer) educated guests on the vision and story of RecruitUS.
In his speech, Paczas reflected, “Two years ago when Kenny came to me with the idea for RecruitUS, I said, ‘Man, you’re crazy. It’s not going to work.’ Now I’m looking at him like he is a genius.”
DeGraaf also recalled the moment RecruitUS first came about, “I remember one day Cole came to me and said, ‘let’s start a business.’ It was an intriguing idea, but what could we do? We all have sport backgrounds, but what could we do that’s different and no one else has done before? I reflected on my experiences of getting recruited to college, which was very difficult. I know there’s a lot of bowlers and a lot of athletes from lesser profiled sports that also fit that category.”
RecruitUS LLC will officially begin their services with the 2017 RecruitUS Collegiate Bowling Showcase presented by High 5 Gear, Bowler Connections, and ViQing Gear on Sunday, April 9 at Sterling Lanes in Sterling Heights, Mich. The event is paced become the largest bowling recruiting event in the world for its inaugural year with a near 250 high school athletes and 30 collegiate programs expected to be in attendance.
“It’s just crazy to think about how in two years this has gone from an idea, to now bowlers and coaches are flying in to Metro Detroit from all over the continent for this event,” DeGraaf added. “It’s a surreal feeling and it’s going to feel even more surreal when we see it all in action.”
Following the company greeting participants enjoyed a variety of activities ranging from three games of cosmic bowling, free participant giveaways, a pizza and pop dinner, 50/50 raffle prizes, and a bake sale provided by Sweet Abigail’s Cookies.
“Thankful,” was the one word DeGraaf used to recap the night. “I have nothing but confidence this company will continue to grow as we do the right thing for these high school athletes. It is going to be pretty special when 10 years from now we can look back at this moment as where it all started. There is not a person that was here tonight I will forget.” Alisa agreed, stating, “I am thankful for everybody that came out to support RecruitUS. Thanks for supporting our goals to help high school athletes transition in becoming a collegiate athlete.
Paczas concluded, “I am really appreciative. Even those that wanted to make it but were unable were still generous enough to make a donation. It means the world knowing our company has that support from so many great people. The future of RecruitUS is bright.” After beginning their services April 9 with the 2017 RecruitUS Collegiate Bowling Showcase, the firm will publically announce its second sport to be added for the 2018 schedule as a part of their slow-process, high-detailed strategy. The firm hopes to increase their work load to two sports in 2018, four in 2019, and eight in 2020 before having a complete 12 sports per year calendar in 2020.
“There are too many athletes playing lesser profiled sports that are unaware of the opportunities they have to compete at the collegiate level,” DeGraaf said. “We have put it on ourselves to make these athletes aware of the opportunities they have in hopes of not only competing in a sport they love for four more years, but also in hopes of lowering their college costs via scholarships in a time where college tuition rates are increasing at an unreasonable rate.”