So you think you’d like to play your sport in college?
Use this webquest by your Junior year to help seek out your best opportunities…
Why participate in athletics in high school? Why look to participate beyond high school?
It is a researched fact that students who engage in athletics (or other forms of extra-curricular activity) while in high school have better grades, attendance, satisfaction with school, and long term career success combined with lower rates of disciplinary action, drug/alcohol and tobacco use.
In addition, the NCAA has determined that students who continue to remain involved in athletics at the college or university level have higher graduation rates (particularly female and minority students.)
Also, be prepared to have the “student” part of high school student-athlete given greater consideration by college coaches due to the NCAA’s recent academic reforms. Colleges and universities have to prove academic progress and satisfactory graduation rates among student-athletes in order to continue offering scholarships and aid in the amounts they are used to.
First: Get Organized:
The first thing you need to do is download and save the following Student-Athlete Organizer that you will use to keep on track through this process. Right click this Student-Athlete Organizer hyperlink and “save target” as a Word document to a safe and secure place.
Second: Make a Student-Athlete Profile:
Then you’ll need to create a Student-Athlete Profile (similar to a professional resume) that you will eventually send to the coaches or recruiting coordinator for the schools in which you are interested. This document briefly, but in a clear and organized fashion, describes who you are as a student, athlete, and community member. As you progress throughout your high school career you should revisit this profile to update or add to your accomplishments. Right click this Student-Athlete Profile hyperlink and “save target” as a Word document to a safe and secure place.
Third: Get to Know the NCAA:
To register with the NCAA upload the link from the NCAA’s Guide for the College Bound Athlete. Click here to access the NCAA Guide to the College Bound Athlete
After having read through the Guide for the College Bound Athlete and having registered for NCAA Eligibility Center, make an appointment to see your OHS guidance counselor, to complete the NCAA Request for Release Form.
Fourth: Research Schools:
You should also be considering where might be a good place for you to go: what schools compete in my sport? At what level of play? How do my skills, physical attributes, and academic performance match up with other students and athletes that are already there? Click here to access the www.NCAASportListing to find out which colleges and universities offer competition in your sport. You may search by geographic sport or sport and level of play or region of the country.
Once you’ve found out what schools sponsor your sport in a part of the country or at a level you believe might be right for you (list them in your organizer) it’s time to discover if you and that school are a good fit.
You should have already listed your current GPA and best PSAT or SAT score in your organizer. Now it’s time to find out how that matches up versus the schools that you are interested in and their average incoming freshman. Be sure to meet with your OHS Guidance Counselor in order to review, revise and refine your list of schools. Finding good matches for you is a complicated task which includes more than just GPA’s and SAT’s.
There are a number of resources available for your research:
- The Guidance Department offers Naviance to 10th, 11th and 12th grade students.
Naviance offers the ability to search 3700+ colleges and universities for information
on admissions and finance. Click here to access Naviance
- The Princeton Review’s website includes a search tool that allows you to enter
the school name and research school information including average incoming SAT and
- Or, use the internet to access each school’s homepage. The admissions
department is a good first place to seek this information. If the admissions department
does not list the information in an easy to find place try calling or e-mailing an
- When you find it list it in your organizer in the appropriate place.
Finally, don’t hesitate to use your OHS Guidance Department to double or cross check your research and information for accuracy.
Now that you have found schools that are good academic match for you (be sure some have an average incoming freshman profile that is better than your current scores and GPA) your next step is some research on the roster of the sport you are interested in. Go to the school’s athletic website (usually prominently linked in to school’s homepage). Not only is it standard for each team to have its own site within the Athletic Department’s, many also give detailed roster information or team media guides including player biographies. Many player biographies include their high school accomplishments and this information can be helpful in determining if you are the type of athlete this program typically recruits or attracts. Based on that information use the organizer to check off: possible match, possible mismatch, or inconclusive.
Fifth: Start Making Contact
By this point you should have identified schools that are interesting to you and (according to your research) may be interested in you. You should start to establish contact with the head coaches at these schools using the documents and contact information provided for your use.
A couple of helpful hints:
- Try to personalize the letter of introduction as much as possible. Refer to events in their
program; a recent big win, other team members from this area, etc.
- Do not be afraid to e-mail your letter of introduction. People feel more compelled to
respond to e-mails.
- Be prepared to be frustrated. Don’t pin too much hope on any one program and be
prepared to have to make repeated attempts. If you really want it, this should not bother
Oceanside High School Guidance Dept. Homepage contains myriad informational resources, including the Monthly Guidance Newsletter.
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