Tips for the Student-Athlete Who Wants to Play College Athletics
Many high school students participate in athletics, and a number of these athletes would seriously like to continue playing the sport they love at the college level. However, getting an athletic scholarship is not an easy thing to accomplish.
If you are a high school athlete and are thinking about pursuing a sport at the next level, here are a few tips to consider:
- You should target a college that is the best fit for you academically first, athletics second
Statistics show that less than 30% of students who begin playing a team sport at the college level are still playing that sport their senior year. And, if you are thinking about becoming a professional athlete, remember that less than 2% of college athletes actually turn pro. Your main focus should be on going to a college that will propel you into a great career or get you into graduate school. If you can find the college that you love academically and you can also participate in sports, go for it, but remember that the main reason you are going to college is to get a college education.
- If you are talented, you need to market yourself
Unless you are an elite athlete, you are going to need to do a lot of work on your own. You should proactively contact coaches to get yourself noticed. Go to the college website for each college you are interested in and email the coach and fill out the prospective athlete questionnaire that is available on most sites. Then, follow-up with a phone call and see if the coach would like a video of you in action.
- Know the recruiting rules
Rules on playing a sport at the college level are strict and you must meet a variety of requirements to be eligible. Go to the NCAA Clearing House website and research the information to make sure you are meeting all of the requirements needed.
- Be involved in travel teams, showcases, and college-based sports camps
Being highly visible in front of college coaches is an excellent way to show them you exist. Yes, it will cost extra money, but the advantages are huge.
- Don’t forget about Division III (D3) colleges
A lot of student-athletes and their families often overlook D3 colleges. Although NCAA rules prohibit D3 colleges from awarding athletic scholarships, many athletes who attend a D3 college can receive merit-based aid based on your academics. Do some research about the D3 colleges in your state or city, contact the coach of your sport, and visit the college website and complete the prospective athlete survey.
At Advanced College Solutions, Inc., we offer a wide variety of programs that will prepare you for the college admissions process. Please give us a call and set up an appointment so we can get you started on your way to the next challenge in your academic journey.