College Recruiting Information
I like volleyball. It's an amazing sport. What do I have to do to get ready to play volleyball in college?
There are several organizations that determine if you qualify to play sports in college. Which organization applies to your situation depends on the college you choose. Three of the largest organizations are NCAA, NAIA, and NJCAA. Click on the logos below for more information on how to prepare to participate in college athletics.
I'm ready for college! But I don't know what college is best for me. What do I do?
That's easy! Go to collegeboard.org to find the right college for you.
Are you sure I can play volleyball for these colleges?
Check this list of colleges that have women's volleyball to make sure.
So I've done all of that now how do I get college recruiters to connect with me?
University Athlete is a website that does exactly that? They work with recruiters and with student athletes to connect the two of them. Check them out.
WOW! That's a lot of information. Can you boil it down for me?
Well, it's a complicated and lengthy process so committment to it is the most important thing. If you aren't willing to put forth the effort to find the right college are you sure you are willing to put forth the effort to be the best player for the college of your choice? That being said, we can offer a shorter list to help you stay on track.
- Keep your grades up. Every organization and every college has minimum entrance standards and they almost always include your grade point average. Keeping your grade point average high gives you the greatest opportunity when it comes to choosing a college. And as an added bonus you are more likely to qualify for scholorships which will reduce the overall cost of college for you.
- Evaluate your skills...objectively. Have qualified and disinterested parties give you feedback on your skill level. Parents and coaches often have a limited view of the talent out there. Having an outside person give you an honest assessment of your skills is the best way to start moving forward. After all, if you don't know where you are how will you be able to set goals to achieve the performance level you desire?
- Develop your skills. Everyone can get better. Even the best players in the world continuously practice and receive coaching to improve the skills they already possess. Coaches love to see athletes that aren't just satisfied but are hungry to learn more and get better. Remember that "getting better" doesn't just mean playing or practicing volleyball. A better diet and strength conditioning are two ways to improve your skills without ever practicing. And you'll be a better person all around!
- Enlist assistance. As you can see this is a lengthy, complicated and sometimes expensive process. You'll want any and all help to get you through it. Your parents will probably be your biggest assistance with the process but don't forget about your school counselors, teachers and coaches. There are even professional recruiters that can make the process much easier for everyone, especially you. Big tasks like this are much easier when each person involved carries a little of the load.
- Register with student-athlete eligibility centers. The NCAA, NAIA and other student athlete organizations can be the single most important people you interact with during your search. If you fail to work with them you may not be eligible to play at all when you do get to college. Even if you're too young to apply you can familiarize yourself with what you can expect. That will make the application process a lot easier when you are ready to commit.
- Be pro-active. Colleges can have literally hundreds of kids trying to get into their athletic programs, if you wait for them to find you they won't. You have to get out there and make sure that your top college choices aren't just aware that you exist but that you have an interest in them. Make sure that if there is a college you would like to go to and an athletic program you would like to participate in that they know that! Some of the top athletic programs may accept less than 1% of the people that apply. It's on you to make sure they understand that you are the 1%!
- Be a professional. All of your communication and interactions with EVERY school you are interested in or is interested in you is an important one. Word travels fast throughout the coaching community if there is a player out there that is a class act all around. So even if the school contacting you isn't one that you're interested in be polite and professional. You may find that they are able to find a better fit for you. Conduct yourself poorly and you may find that NO school has a place for you.
- Ask questions. The only stupid question is the one that isn't asked. If you don't know they answer and you can't figure it out on your own don't just sit on your hands and wait for it to come to you..... ASK! You've already got a ton of help from your parents, teachers, coaches and counselors so they're a great place to start. But don't stop with them if you don't get the answer you need, keep trying. Sometimes people you would think would never take the time to work with you are the first people to step up..... once you ask. Is there a college player you've always idolized? Maybe they've gone through the same thing. A short e-mail has never caused a problem and often creates a solution.
- Persistence Pays! You're going to run into some hurdles along the way. You're going to hit some walls and feel like you just can't do it any more. You're going to have days (or weeks) where you feel like it's just not worth it. Keep going! You're an athlete. You've committed time and energy. At the end of the day, if you just keep trying, you'll win. Nothing worth while is easy.
Here's a list of things that we've put together to help you stay on target. Download it and keep it handy so you know what you've done and what you still need to do. Yes, it's long but we know you can do it. Remember, we're here to help.