4 Tips toward a great college athletic experience and a story about Mary
Every year there are hundreds of athletes who end up in college athletic programs in which they won’t succeed. Athletic careers that were so full of hope fizzle out. Athletes who could have enjoyed 4 years of competing as a college athlete, drop out of sport with their dreams in shambles.
Read on. Take heed of the 4 tips and let yourself see the college athletic experience through Mary’s eyes.
Several years ago, I met a young lady who was about 25 years old. Her college athletic career had turned from great promise into a disaster. Of the following 4 tips, she followed zero; not willfully but because she had no guidance in the recruiting process.
One way is to ask your club coach, high school coach, or another coach who has watched you play. Ask for an honest opinion and be willing to hear it.
Watch College games
Another way to estimate where you belong is to go watch a few college games. Go watch several different colleges near you. You will see a stark difference in the level of athletes. Be honest with yourself. Imagine yourself on the field. Would the coach play you? Could you compete if you were out there? How far away are you developmentally? Could you get to that point or is it beyond you?
Take note of who is calling you
Have coaches already called you? Consider what type of schools have called, and look for others at the same level.
Evaluate the rosters
Look carefully at the rosters. What type of high school and club teams do they come from? Are they mainly players from one location or doe the team have more of a national look? What does it tell you if there are few to no players on the team from your area?
Why is it important?
Finding the right fit for you will give you the most satisfaction over your collegiate years. If you aim to high, you will have years of frustration. If you do nothing, you will be throwing yourself into a program like a blind dart thrower.
If you are not ready to take action, listen to Mary’s story. Maybe it will help motivate you to be proactive and realistic in your search.
What about Mary?
Here is the story Mary told me of her college experience.
Mary was an all-state goal keeper when she graduated. She was a highly sought after player regionally. She was offered several scholarships at Division 2 and NAIA programs. One and only one Division 1 school took any notice of her. She was offered a small scholarship at a mid-major Division 1 program.
Mary dreamed of playing Division 1. Those around her filled her head of her ability to succeed. Off she went to college. By the end of preseason, Mary came to a hard realization. The coach had her listed as the 3rd string goal keeper. Mary worked very hard her freshmen year. She could see the upper classmen keepers would graduate in a year and two years respectively.
It didn’t turn out quite as Mary had expected. Her sophomore season she showed up for preseason full of hopes. She thought she would be fighting for a starting spot. At very least she would be the backup keeper. Little did she understand the coach continued to recruit. An incoming freshmen jumped over her on the depth chart during preseason. Once again, she was the 3rd string keeper.
At the end of a discouraging sophomore season, the coach called her in his office. He told her she was not worth the money he had spent on her. She was done and her athletic scholarship was pulled.
She stayed at the University and got her degree. Mary did not play college ball again. Several years later when I met her, she was still filled with regrets. She would have been the starter at many of the other schools who were interested in her.
Take Action Now
Mary didn’t know any better and it cost her big time. You now have 4 strategies Mary did not have. Don’t let life and recruiting just happen to you.
Take control of the recruiting process so you can have a great college athletic experience!
A Guide to Researching Colleges
I have mentioned before that researching colleges is the first thing to do if you want to play the sport you love in college.
I realize that many of you have no idea where to start.
If you have no idea where to start, this will get you moving in the right direction.
Next, take a look at The Value of Researching Rosters.
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P.S. Come join our Facebook group, The Recruiting Code. This is the place to be for parents and coaches to talk about college recruiting. Come learn from each other, share stories and get information that will help your child become a college athlete.