Many students believe that the only way that they can move on to participating in college athletics is if they become recruited. This is not the way this works anymore. A student can walk on with no scholarships, reach out to a coach and send them information about their athletic performance that leads to scholarship discussions, or get recruited. It is up to you to reach out and make this happen.
Before we get started, there are two Sections of sports to play in. Some colleges are NAIA and some are NCAA
Examples of NCAA: UCLA, Pepperdine, USC, Academy of Art, Azusa Pacific, Point Loma Nazarene University
Examples of NAIA: Marymount California, San Diego Christian College, Westmont College, Vanguard, Master's College
I want to become an NCAA athlete:
1. If I want to have the opportunity to go to a Division 1 or Division 2 NCAA school, I need to register myself as a student athlete Click below to register. This is so NCAA can track if your courses make you an eligible athlete. This is VERY IMPORTANT!
2. If the school is not NCAA D1 or D2, you do not need to register. If you are not sure what your school of choice is, check out here the different divisions.
3. Once you have registered, you may locate on the college website the coaches email. Feel free to contact the coach. If it is the "dead period" the coach can write you back, but they may not be able to schedule a visit. Be sure to follow these rules in order to not lose eligibility
4. If you have further questions, check out the NCAA FAQ.
I want to become an NAIA student athlete:
1. If I want the opportunity to play sports in an NAIA school, I need to register with the NAIA athlete eligibility center. This is so they can check my eligibility with my courses and more. Start by registering here.
2. Find the schools that you are interested in attending. On their website, locate the email or phone number for the coach and let them know that you are interested. Begin a conversation, even if you are just a freshmen. The coach will begin tracking your stats and looking at you along the way. If you are already a senior, they will do the same then.
3. If you have any further questions, visit the NAIA student athlete guide.
I registered and contacted the coaches, but now what?
There are many ways to keep yourself in the minds of coaches. Here are a few tips:
1. Create a website for yourself with a contact form for coaches to use. On this site list items like your GPA, class rank, stats about your sport (Example: best time in the 800 Meter) Update it along the way with your newest statistics or results of different races, games, or matches. Below is a sample website of a freshmen volleyball. She sends this link to the coaches that she contacts.
Click on the image below to see the full site.
2. Email the coaches every so often to let them know more about how your season is going.
3. When contacting them, be sure to be respectful. For many coaches, character is one of the biggest things that they look at. They do not want to add someone to their team that will not represent them well, even if you are the best at your sport. RESPECT, RESPONSIBILITY, INTEGRITY!
4. Keep your grades up! These are very important. Be sure that you are taking courses that will get you on track for college. If you are not sure, use the course selection sheet to help you know the right path.