BSHS grad creates website to promote prep athletes
A Bonner Springs High School graduate has created a business that he hopes will help high school athletes seeking athletic scholarships for college.
Kevin Venerable, BSHS class of 2006, is a co-founder of Instant Exposure, a high school sports recruiting website that can be found online at instantexposure.org. Venerable, himself a former Division I athlete in track and field, said his dream is to help all athletes promote themselves in an inexpensive way, and he even wants to offer a free profile for athletes from his alma mater.
“We have a goal to help each high school-athlete on the website to be recruited and get a potential athletic scholarship,” he said. “And I also have a vision to give back to Bonner Springs students.”
Venerable was a sprinter for the Braves and a two-time State qualifier in the 100 meter dash, and Kaw Valley Champion in the 4x100.
“Coach Jim Mitchell was the head track coach, and I was fortunate enough to obtain an athletic scholarship to KCKCC with only two years' experience in running,” he said.
Venerable then earned a full ride to the University of Missouri-Kansas City, where he qualified for the NCAA regional meet and later became the Summit League champion.
Since graduating from UMKC, Venerable has been working as a railroad conductor, in the process of becoming an engineer next year. But he said a conversation with a friend, Instant Exposure co-founder Eric Tyler, who played football for Kansas University, led to the idea for the website.
“I had a good career, but I remembered the struggles I had during the recruitment process due to the lack of recognition,” he said.
Venerable said while there are other sites that offer a similar service, Instant Exposure is unique because it allows athletes to add three highlights videos on their profile, and it focuses on an athlete’s academic attributes as well.
Venerable’s minor in computer information technology and website design studies helped in building the site, and Tyler and Venerable established the website Sept. 28. The cost for using the site is $14.99 annually, which Venerable said covers the maintenance fees for the site.
So far 18 athletes are using the site, from Basehor-Linwood High School’s Michael Pete to athletes from St. Louis and as far away as Louisiana and Florida.
“We are excited about how fast the program is reaching out to people across the country,” Venerable said. “We are having great reviews and results from our website already. A lot of parents are impressed with the price only being $14.99, because some pay hundreds of dollars to get the same results or response from college coaches.”
He said parents also like Instant Exposure’s efforts to send out proper documentations and to email the athlete’s profile to the coaches.
“One student athlete received an athletic scholarship four weeks ago from University of Illinois, and he is still using the website to get more offers,” Venerable said. “We have been doing a lot of marketing through Facebook and sending out fliers to various high school games in Missouri and Wisconsin.”
Now Venerable said he and Tyler, who attended F.L. Schlagle High School, are making an effort to give back to athletes at their high schools.
“Eric and I decided that we will put 15 to 20 seniors from each school for free,” he said. “We hope this will also bring awareness and positive feedback from Kansas high school athletes.”