The USA TODAY High School Sports Recruiting Tips are provided by our recruiting partner, Playced.com.
If you’re looking for help finding and landing that athletic scholarship, make sure you are using all your resources. There are certainly companies that can help, but you have many resources right in front of you that can make a big difference in your recruiting journey.
Your guidance counselor
First things first… You have to take care of your grades and identify which colleges you qualify for academically. The more colleges you qualify for academically, the more options you have athletically. Tell your guidance counselor early that you are interested in becoming a college athlete. Put them on notice so they can be thinking about which colleges might be appropriate. He or she can also help you find colleges that fit your personality, have your major and are within your family’s budget.
Second, you need an objective evaluation to determine which colleges are most appropriate for you to pursue. If your coach is honest with you about where you stand (and you accept their assessment), your recruiting process is more likely to be successful.
Your coach can also help by being available to vouch for your abilities. It would be a big plus if your coach is willing to proactively reach out to college coaches on your behalf.
If your parents really want to be involved, their best role is one of an administrative assistant. It is important to remember that this is your recruiting journey and you need to take ownership of your college search, but you can probably use a little help. Parents can provide input on the college budget, help you organize the process, proofread emails and keep you focused on realistic schools. In short, one of the most important things a parent can provide to help their athlete in the recruiting process is to be available.
Your current teammates can be a great resource in the college recruiting process. Don’t ask them for help, but pay attention to what has been successful for them and what hasn’t. Talk to them about how they identified colleges and how they are contacting coaches. Are they sending emails, connecting on Twitter and/or attending showcase camps? Don’t compare your recruiting journey with their journey, but learn from their experience.
In today’s world you can literally get the answer to any question at the click of a button. Want to know how many gallons of water are in Lake Michigan? Google it. Who was the tallest president? Google it. Want to know the requirements to play your sport at a particular level? Yep, you can Google that too. The point here is that today’s technology allows you to easily access the who, what, where, when and why of any question or situation. That includes college recruiting.
I am a firm believer that YOU are your best recruiting resource. There is no one better to pick your college home than you. Don’t expect someone else to find your college scholarship for you. Take ownership of your college search and you will most likely find a scholarship at a school where you want to play!