College Recruiting: Myths vs Reality
Television and the media promote athletic scholarships as being something that is handed out to every deserving athlete, but that simply is not the case. There are too many qualified high school athletes and not enough opportunities at the college level. On average only 1% of all high school athletes end up being offered the chance to pursue their sports dreams once they graduate. Even fewer are awarded a scholarship, so you have to be realistic about your chances.
The keys to improving your chances of a scholarship are to start early, to professionally market yourself to recruiters and to build strong relationships with college coaches. You are already putting the majority of your available time into improving your athletic ability, so you may not have any time to left to properly promote yourself. There are experienced professionals who understand the recruiting process and they can assist you in reaching you goals. If you are not confident that you can secure a scholarship for yourself, then consult an expert. Your future is too important to rely on luck alone.
The Recruiting Process Starts Early
The scholarship process is incredibly competitive and it is essential that you start it as early as possible. It takes time to build a meaningful relationship with a college coach, especially if the relationship needs to be strong enough for the coach to offer you a scholarship. Most recruitment professionals recommend that you start as early as your freshman year.
It is also crucial that you understand the academic requirements early on, so you make sure you take all of the necessary courses. You don’t want to miss out on your chance at an athletic scholarship just because you didn’t take a second social science course. Getting good grades is also more crucial than you think. A college coach will pick a good student over someone who struggles with their studies.
Developing a Recruiting Plan
If you know you will need a scholarship in order to afford your college education, then you need a solid plan to ensure that you will be awarded one. It should start by making first contact with as many potential college coaches as possible, as soon as you begin high school. The easiest way to open the door to a scholarship is a professional and effective introduction letter.
Your recruiting plan should also include sending out a strong marketing package to potential coaches. Your package should include an updated and accurate sports resume that highlights all of your skills and accomplishments. Reference to you grades and extra circular achievements are also important, so that coaches know that you are more than just an athlete.
In order to successfully market yourself, you should have a link to a professional highlight video and references from your current coaches. A college coach needs physical evidence that you are not only a great player, but someone who is also coachable. The more you can sell yourself to a coach, the more likely they will be willing to invest in your talents.
How to Be Discovered and Evaluated
The internet is a powerful marketing tool, if you know how to use it effectively. If you create a strong online presence with highlight videos and an updated sport resumes, then all you need to do it send out the link to potential coaches. That way you give a coach the chance to view your abilities when it fits it their schedule.
Once you are able to grab a coach’s attention, don’t let it go! If they seem really interested in you, then invite them to watch you play in person. If the coach cannot make it the game, have somebody professional video tape it, edit it and send the best parts of your performance to the coach.
College Athletic Recruiting Services Can Help
Recruiting services are necessary if you need to ensure that you receive athletic funding for college or university. These professional services have the experience and connections to make sure that you are on a coach’s radar. Recruitment agencies also have the latest technology to create cutting edge effective marketing packages that will work.
There are so many high school athletes that there is only a 1-2% chance of being accepted into a college athletic program. There is even a smaller chance of receiving a scholarship towards your tuition. A good recruiting service will market your strengths and abilities to college coaches and significantly improve your chances of being recognized.
Professional agencies also know all of the requirements, guidelines and deadlines, so that you don’t miss your chance over something you could have controlled, if you only knew about it in time. Remember, knowledge is power!