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How Do You Get Recruited For College Sports?

Being involved in activities and sports can be a rewarding part of your academic experience. If you want to continue competing when you graduate high school, you might be wondering how to get recruited for college sports. This step-by-step guide will point you in the right direction, so keep reading to find out how to get recruited for college sports!

What is athletic recruitment?

Recruitment is when college coaches evaluate various high school sports programs to fill slots on their team’s roster. During this process, coaches and athletic scouts look for student athletes that will mesh well with their team and hopefully produce results. In exchange for attending their college or university, student athletes may even be offered athletic scholarships depending on the college division. As a result, recruitment is a competitive process. However, don’t let that discourage you from taking your best shot!

Further reading: What does being a D1, D2, and D3 athlete mean?

How do I get recruited for college sports?

Getting recruited is a process and requires a series of steps for you to compete at the school of your choice. It can be daunting when you start, but fortunately, this article can be a resource for you to build off of. Following these steps can help you continue your athletic career.

1. Create a list of schools.

Deciding what school you want to go to is one of the first steps you take in the college admissions process. However, you should still consider the quality of education at the college of your choice, even if you’re interested in their sports program. It’s a good idea to keep the tuition and expenses of each school in mind. While an athletic scholarship might cover some or all of your school fees, it’s in your best interest to always be prepared for different financial aid outcomes. 

2. Discuss recruitment with your high school coach.

Speaking with your high school coach is an essential part of the recruiting process. Through these discussions, you’ll be able to gauge what level you’re competing at and how you can shine during the recruiting process. Your coach can also point you in the right direction for schools to reach out to. Also, your high school coach might have connections to get you in touch with college colleges. 

3. Make a highlight video.

Your performance is one of the most important factors to securing a spot on your dream college’s roster. Coaches are interested in seeing what you might bring to their team, and you can do this through your highlight video. A highlight video is a compilation of your greatest moments as an athlete.

You can create your highlight video on a website like Hudl or use video editing software to do it yourself. First, put yourself in the shoes of the coaches. Try to figure out what a particular coach might need and want for their collegiate team, then demonstrate that in your video.

4. Maintain your eligibility.

Different schools and recruitment platforms have different requirements for eligibility. One of the common prerequisites is a GPA benchmark, so it’s imperative that you stay on top of your grades during this process. In addition, there are usually requirements for each sport, such as weight, statistics, and more. 

5. Talk to potential coaches. 

During this process, you want to connect with potential coaches as soon as possible. Whether it’s through your high school coach’s connections or simply emailing them, you want college coaches to remember you. This is especially important if you choose to opt out of recruitment platforms. Try to find recruitment events in your area for the schools you want to attend. Some teams might even host camps or combines to view your skills firsthand!

Related: Do college athletes get paid?

What should I do after I’m recruited?

During the recruitment process, schools will approach you with varying offers. Choose whichever aligns the most with what you want, especially which school you truly want to attend. Be sure to evaluate how much each school is offering and take campus tours to see how you feel about the university. 

Once you’ve decided, your offer is official when you sign your letter of intent, which means you’re agreeing to attend that school. Then all that’s left for you to do is get ready for this new adventure into continuing your education while playing a sport!

What if I don’t get recruited?

While you might be excited about recruitment, it’s not your only option. Put forth your best effort to get into the school of your choice because teams still host tryouts for interested students. Even though you might have the opportunity to “walk-on” to the team, you unfortunately won’t be receiving an athletic scholarship from that college. 

However, your financial aid options don’t stop there. Scholarships, grants and financial aid are all other avenues of paying for school that you should explore. 

Key Takeaways

Key Takeaways

  • Recruitment is when college coaches scout for high school student-athletes to fill their team’s roster
  • Being recruited for college sports is a competitive process, so the sooner you start the better!
  • Make sure you discuss your skills with your current coach and create a compilation of your greatest highlights 
  • Stay healthy and on top of your grades to maintain your eligibility for recruitment 
  • Matching a name to a face can improve your chances, so speak or meet with the coaches you’re interested in playing with
  • If you receive recruitment offers, try and visit the different schools before signing your letter of intent
  • If you don’t get recruited, there are still other options, including becoming a walk-on and applying for outside scholarships
Key Takeaways

Don’t miss: Top athletic scholarships

Additional resources

Now that you’re starting to secure your academic future, it’s time to think about what you’ll do while you’re there. One of the first steps you might want to take is deciding on your major! There are tons of different fields to choose from such as anthropology, IT, kinesiology, and many more. No matter what you decide, make sure it’s something you can look forward to doing every day. You’ll also have to juggle it with any other outside commitments you have like clubs and sports.

Frequently asked questions about getting recruited for college sports 

When do college coaches start recruiting?

Students can begin the recruitment process as early as January 1st of their sophomore year. However, all visits and offers between recruiters and recruits are unofficial until a student’s junior year.

Can I just try-out or walk-on to the team?

  Yes, you can absolutely try-out or walk-on to a college sports team. However, it’s unlikely that you’ll immediately receive an athletic scholarship with this route. You can eventually earn one depending on your performance.

Do I need to use a professional platform to get recruited?

If you are willing to put in the time and effort to get recruited on your own, a professional recruitment organization is not necessarily needed. Some high school students choose to use a recruiting platform such as NCSA Athletic Recruiting or the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) for the ease of doing so. Be aware that while a recruitment platform is free to sign up for, there are costs involved. NCSA packages can run into the tens of thousands of dollars.