When it comes to your child and their–or YOUR–dreams of a full-ride athletic scholarship to play in college, it may be time for a reality check.
Coach Renee Lopez, a college recruiting expert for high school student-athletes, has some harsh realities for parents and athletes looking to play at the college level. In her article Common Misconceptions about the College Athletic Recruiting Process, she talks about three of these myths. The following is taken from that article:
Only about two-percent of high school athletes are awarded athletic scholarships to compete in college. It’s a staggeringly small percentage, right? Well, I’m here to help. I am a recruiting educator after being a college coach for 14 years and an NCAA Compliance Director. I want to debunk 3 misconceptions I hear from student-athletes, parents, and coaches quite often in my recruiting education seminars:
I’m the Best Athlete on My Team. College Coaches will be ‘Knocking Down My Door’!
After watching the recruiting process unfold in various movies and other media, many think every good athlete is going to be chased down by various college coaches just because they have above average talent. In all reality, only a few are really chased like the process seen in the movie, The Blind Side.
Instead, an athlete needs to be marketing themselves to college coaches! They should start sending college coaches emails during their freshman and sophomore years to let them know about their interest in their college.
I REALLY Want My Child to Play at This College. I’ll Contact the Coach to Let Them Know About My Child’s Interest.
Parents, I’m going to say this as kindly as I can…Please do not do this! This is the number 1 mistake that can be made. The college coach wants to hear from the prospective student-athlete, NOT the parents. With college coaches receiving 100s of emails a month from recruits, many use parents contacting them as an easy way of filtering through the list. Student-athletes should be contacting coaches as they are the ones who are going to play for that coach, not the parent.
I Have Been Invited to Their Summer/ID Camp, so They Must Want Me as a Recruit!
Since the NCAA restricts some of the types of communication that college coaches can have with prospects, one should not believe a camp invite equals a coach’s interest in you as a recruit. Having worked hundreds of camps as a college coach for my own program and being on camp staffs with schools in the ACC, SEC, Atlantic 10, Colonial Athletic Association, and many more, I want to tell you one simple fact that most college coaches probably don’t want to get out: Most college coaches use camps as a way to make money for their programs, their assistants, and themselves.
If you are looking to continuing to play your sport in college, do your research on the college to make sure it fits you academically, athletically, and socially. Make sure you let them know early in your high school career that you are interested by sending them a professional email so you won’t fall through the cracks of the college coach evaluating you!