Every year, tens of thousands of high school students win NCAA athletic scholarships. Some students hope that the NCAA scholarship will be the first step toward a lucrative career in professional sports, while others see a scholarship as the only chance they’ll have to get a college education. No matter your level of motivation is, these tips will give you an idea of what you need to do to improve your chances of receiving a scholarship.
Get an ncaa athletic scholarship offer
- Start laying the groundwork as soon as possible . Although athletic scholarship hunting is often thought of as a senior year of activity, the reality is that many students begin preparations as early as their freshman year of high school. These preparations usually include practicing your sport and working even during the season of identifying several colleges you would like to attend and finding what skills and personal qualities the schools look for in athlete and developmental scholarships. and maintaining sound study habits so that academic eligibility never becomes an issue for you.
- Attend camps and invitationals . Many colleges and universities host summer camps or special invitational events to prepare students from across the country. By attending these events, you’ll be able to meet college coaches and team member staff from the network with other top high school athletes, and get an idea of how they stack up against the competition.
- Familiarize yourself with recruiting policies . The NCAA has very strict guidelines regarding the amount of contact potential high school recruits can have with college coaches and other school officials. If you violate any of these guidelines, you could jeopardize your scholarship eligibility. Current policies can be found in a handbook called ‘The NCAA Student-Athlete’s Guide to College’, which is available as a free PDF download at www.ncaa.org. Be sure to abide by all the rules in the book, and follow the procedures for registration with the NCAA center.
- Keep the lesser known of schools in mind. Unless you are among the nation’s most elite athletes in sports, you shouldn’t limit your scholarship search to just top schools. For example, if you are a soccer player, it might be fun to dream of playing at USC, Texas, or Notre Dame. But at some point, you have to ask yourself whether or not you have a real shot at winning a scholarship to one of those schools. If your answer is ‘No’, then consider going after a scholarship in a less prominent way, such as the State of New Mexico or Central Tennessee program. You might also want to broaden your search to include NCAA Division I-AA schools (Southern Illinois, Grambling State, Cal Poly, etc.) and NCAA Division II schools (Kentucky State, Minnesota-Duluth,
- put together a portfolio. Many of the scholarship applicants are mistakenly under the impression that colleges and universities actively monitor every preparation program in the country. But the truth of the matter is that the school doesn’t have the time or the staff to do it. If you want college coaches to know you deserve a scholarship, you have to prove yourself. This can be achieved by creating an academic and sports portfolio that will serve as a marketing tool. You should include a personal letter to the coach explaining why you want to play for his team, a video highlight of your best games, letters of recommendation from your current coaches, and a resume containing relevant academic and athletic information. .
- Visit the campuses and interview with the coaches . If a coach is sufficiently impressed with your set of pictures and portfolio, you will receive an invitation to come to the school’s recruiting officer to visit. During your stay, you’ll get a chance to see what school life in you was supposed to be like. You’ll get to sit in on classes, meet and talk with current team members, and tour the team’s practice and playing facilities. You will also have an interview with the coach or an assistant so that he or she can assess your personality and demeanor.
If all goes well, you could get a scholarship on the spot. Even if you don’t get an offer during your visit, that doesn’t mean you won’t eventually get one. After all, National Signing Day for new recruits isn’t until February 1, and some coaches like to wait until November or December to make their final offers.